Saturday, September 12, 2009

Obama needs to be LBJ to Pass Health Care... but I don't Think that He is.

Eleanor Clift argues that Obama needs to be LBJ in order to get health refrom passed - she's probably right. The problem is - Obama is not LBJ, to be fair few could be such a giant. But Obama's short time in the Senate did not provide him with the skills and insider knowledge that LBJ used to get Civil Rights, Voting Rights, Medicare, and Medicaid.

From Clift "Lyndon Johnson was a master of the legislative arts, having served as Senate majority leader before moving to the White House. Washington lawyer Harry McPherson, who served as counselor to President Johnson, recalls how LBJ used flattery to gain support for a civil-rights bill from Republican leader Everett Dirksen. Johnson reminded Dirksen of the statue of Abraham Lincoln that stood in the town square in his hometown of Pekin, Illinois. Then he'd lean in close and suggest Dirksen's leadership on this historic bill would make it possible for him to be memorialized alongside Lincoln."

Can anyone really see such an approach working for President Obama?

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