That’s because he’s given up even pretending to be concerned with all Americans. In this election year, he has decided to focus only on helping those who will likely vote for him, trying to bribe them into turning out for him in November in large numbers. His focus has been on traditionally Democratic voting blocs, but his handouts for these groups have been nothing but gimmicks and distortions designed to make it seem as though he is doing more than he actually is.
This election year tactic actually began late last December, when the Secretary of the Health and Human Services Department announced it would mandate all employers – regardless of religious or moral objections – to provide contraceptives, abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization without co-pay. To the women who support President Obama, this sounded like free contraception. In reality, it means higher premiums in return for that nonexistent co-pay.
Not only this, but monthly contraceptives can be obtained for $9 a month, meaning this bill will only save women that amount in return for much higher premiums. Not to mention the attack this launched on freedom of religion. Yet the President is touting this move as if it will open access to women who want to receive contraceptives without co-pay. But remember you have to first have a job in order to receive this “benefit,” and the women the President targeted for this handout (young women) are facing a painful job market. Indeed, the youth unemployment rate is nearly 50%, and even if a young woman is lucky enough to be employed at this time, she might not be working somewhere that offers health insurance to begin with.
But it doesn’t matter to the President. He can travel the country claiming he’s done a great thing for women everywhere and that he should be re-elected for it.
No surprises here. The President’s favorite voting bloc has been receiving handouts since the beginning of his term (think stimulus). The most recent handout came earlier this year, when the President traveled the country imploring Congress to pass the transportation bill so that construction crews (mostly unions) could go to work “building roads and bridges.”
To union members, it sounded like work was on the way. In reality, very few – if any – projects will be started before the election, or even in the next several years. But the President got his talking point to use to shore up the union vote, despite not standing with them in states where collective bargaining has been limited.
Students have received several handouts this year. The President allowed student loan debt to be forgiven after 20 years and kept government-subsidized loan interest rates artificially low. The interest rate move will save students just $7 a month…four years from now. To current students who support the President, it sounded like they will be saving a ton of money when they graduate, but the reality is that current students aren’t even eligible for the lower rate, as only those students who apply this year can receive the lower rate.
This artificial rate cost taxpayers $6 billion but saves just $7 a month. And with the way the economy is going now, who knows if those students can even find jobs after they graduate.
The President gave us a glimpse of his next target two weeks ago when he called for the farm bill to be passed. Now he could have been speaking to farmers, but it’s more likely that he was talking to the 46.3 million Americans who receive food stamps thanks to the bill. Eighty percent of the farm bill is spent on food stamps, and welfare recipients who want the government trough to keep flowing are a large voting bloc that could help the President win re-election.
Expect to see more handouts to welfare recipients in the months to come.