‘Top Line’ — Who Really Wants Health Care to Pass — Really?

By Jonathan Blakely

Feb 24, 2010 5:11pm

ABC News’ Rick Klein reports: The expectations bar for tomorrow’s bipartisan summit on health care could not be lower, with Democrats and Republicans in agreement on one critical point: Broad agreement on a sweeping health care bill won’t happen across party lines. That raises a question that we posed to our Twitter followers today as part of the “Top Line” question of the day: Who would be happier if President Obama winds up signing a health care bill into law? Democrats, who would have something concrete to take to the voters this fall, even if it’s not something a majority of the public winds up liking? Or Republicans, who are convinced that health care reform is a political loser for the president and his party? On Twitter, @cmcabo97 told us Democrats would come out ahead: “The Dems. Worst outcome for them would be to have nothing to show for the last year. GOP will then have to justify obstruction.” We got the opposite response from @kippsterdc: “The GOP will benefit in November 2010 based upon independents voting in Scott Brown and GOP govs in NJ and VA.” We put the question to Ana Marie Cox, Washington correspondent for GQ, on today’s “Top Line.” She’s splitting the difference: “I mean, everyone gets to run on something if there’s a bill, right? I think the Republicans — you will get a tea party element, like, really getting even more energized possibly if there’s a bill. And then you’ll have the Democrats also being able to go home to their districts and present a piece of legislation that they’ve gotten passed. So everyone will be able to run on something.” At the summit, Cox told us that she sees a bigger upside for President Obama than for Republicans: “Talk about your teachable moments, right? I mean this is a chance for the president and for the Democrats to really explain what is in the bill, and to remove that misconception, that very dramatic misconception that the American public has about what actually is in this legislation. I think that is actually another really good thing that could come out of this.” Watch the conversation with Cox HERE.

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