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North Korea, Iran and the Healthcare Debate

Friday, May 29, 2009  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The debate over Judge Sotomayor is fascinating, but also risks diverting conservatives into an ultimately fruitless expenditure of scarce resources in the coming three months.

With a 59-40 split in the Senate, Judge Sotomayor will almost certainly be confirmed, and though some sustained and focused questioning should occur at her hearings (especially on the subject of “superprecedents”), I expect that like Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito, she will shine in these hearings because federal appeals court judges are simply much more skilled in such settings than most senators. The controversies surrounding her that have surfaced will, absent some unknown series of revelations, not derail her confirmation, so time and money spent trying to do so is time and money wasted at a crucuial moment in the country’s life.

Abroad we face enormous dangers from the nuclear ambitions of Iran and the nuclear recklessness of North Korea. President Obama seems wholly unconcerned –removed even– from these twin crises, and as my conversations with Mark Steyn, Christopher Hitchens and John Bolton over the past few days demonstrate, this is alarming because the risks from both rogue regimes are so real. I wrote one of my radio colleagues yesterday that Benjamin Netanyahu is the de facto leader of the world’s realists right now, as both President Obama and Prime Minister Brown don’t seem to want to be bothered by these terrorist regimes, as though ignoring them can make them disappear. Conservatives must continually call attention to the fact that America is in fact doing nothing as the menace grows, and outline the sorts of steps that could be taken by President Obama if and when he awakens to the menace.

On health care the opportunities for activism and effectiveness are much more real. President Obama yesterday urged his national political organization to call Congress to press for passage of radical health care restructuring –a demand that his most loyal supporters in turn demand approval of a bill that hasn’t yet been written! The call for blind allegiance to an unwritten bill signals that the Administration has zero interest in anything other than a political triumph, no matter the cost or effect on the amazing health care system the U.S. currently enjoys. This attitude –political wins over everything else– has defined the first four months of the Obama Administration and will continue to dominate it unless and until Republicans and responsible Democrats join together to stop the sudden, hard left lurch of the Obama agenda.

That has to happen on health care, and it means identifying and lobbying the 50 or so House Democrats and the 10 key Democratic senators who are most likely to oppose the “government option”/single payer meltdown that looms. Why no such list of the Democrats on whom most of the attention must be focused has yet been developed is amazing, but hopefully it will emerge soon.

In the meantime, I continue to request that doctors who see what is coming if the Obama/Pelosi/Reid rationing plan advances send me their analysis at for posting here as appropriate (with or without names as requested), and for everyone to research the most moderate Democratic House members in their states and contact their offices to urge that American health care not be endangered by the radical rewrite being pushed by the president.

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