No, Pres. Obama, the health care vote was not “of the people”

I have repeatedly defended Obama against what I’ve considered unfair attacks from the right. I believe his actions for the most part have not been nearly as “liberal” as some have claimed. It’s wrong to use his middle name of “Hussein” used against him, as if he could have chosen it in any case. And I don’t care for the conspiracy theories such as his alleged foreign birth.

But one of my objections to all this is it weakens legitimate arguments against those actions and words of his that truly threaten our nation.

That includes his utterly outrageous claim following the House vote approving the health care bill.

The vote, he said last night, “proved that this government – a government of the people and by the people – still works for the people.”

Just for using that cliche he merits 20,000 years in purgatory. I trust even my non-Catholic friends will stand by me on that.

But beyond that, we have those pesky surveys that repeatedly showed “the people” opposed the legislation. They include Gallup, Rasmussen, Fox, Pew, NBC/Wall Street Journal, and others. All were released anywhere from days to a week before the vote. All show only about a third of the electorate wanted the legislation to pass.

Then there are the numbers in the House vote itself.

It squeaked by with just seven more yeas than nays, or 50.8 percent of those voting. It got zero votes from opposition party and had 17 defectors from the majority party. That doesn’t invalidate the vote, of course. It legally passed. But is that the kind of victory margin you’d really want for sweeping legislation that will affect all Americans presumably for the rest of our history?

Obviously it’s not what Obama would have wanted. But what he wanted more was a political victory and a massive expansion of government, and now he’s got them. Goody for him. But don’t pretend this is what we wanted.