Democrats often refer to President Obama’s health care reform law as one of his crowning achievements in his first term. However, very few words were uttered during the President’s nomination speech regarding his flagship legislation. Furthermore, there were limited references to President Obama’s first stimulus plan passed in 2009 which Democrats point to as a saving grace of an economy which was in free fall.
With so much put into defending these programs, why no mention in the speech?
Report from Politico:
Barack Obama’s health care law consumed much of his presidency and much of the Democratic National Convention, but you wouldn’t have known it Thursday night.
In back-to-back speeches, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden all but ignored the Affordable Care Act.
Obama didn’t mention the Affordable Care Act or “Obamacare” even once.
In a passing, oblique reference, he credited the American people with ensuring that “a little girl with a heart disorder in Phoenix” will “get the surgery she needs because an insurance company can’t limit her coverage.”
In the address he could have used to celebrate his historic achievement, reintroduce it to the voters, or push back on Republican attacks, Obama had just that one line about it — and a couple of passing references to the dangers of repealing it.
Obama also hinted at Mitt Romney’s threat to repeal the health law and the plans to cut Medicare and Medicaid. Obama said he would “never eliminate health insurance for millions of Americans who are poor, elderly, or disabled — all so those with the most can pay less.”
And in a warning about Republicans’ repeal efforts, Obama described their attitude this way: “If you can’t afford health insurance, hope that you don’t get sick.”
Vice President Joe Biden — who was famously caught calling the health law a “big f—-ing deal” at the signing ceremony — passed over the health care law in his speech too, except for an indirect reference to Obama’s mother fighting her insurance company while she fought cancer.
Another report from Politico regarding the stimulus program:
They are the missing pages of a convention story line, ideas and initiatives once prominently featured in President Barack Obama’s agenda.
Climate change. Economic stimulus. The massive bank bailout known as TARP. The stimulus and the bailout remain politically poisonous while regulatory remedies for climate change have receded as a priority in a poor economy.
All three were central elements of either Obama’s last campaign or his first years in office. But at the Democratic National Convention, they barely rate a mention, even as they complement or undergird some of the president’s top policy goals: shoring up the economy, reversing a financial crisis and achieving energy independence.
Those are the most obvious pieces wiped away from the Democrats’ image-making this week.
There are topics that Mitt Romney chose to avoid as well (I’m looking in Todd Akin’s direction) which were also notable. The entire topic of social issues including gay marriage and abortion were mentioned very little by Romney or Ryan.