Matt Patterson

It's not just Reid, but his entire caucus that appears less than sane these days: According to pollster Scott Rasmussen, on December 14 "Fifty-six percent (56%) of U.S. voters now oppose the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That's the highest level of opposition found - reached three times before - in six months of polling." And yet Democrats insist on marching toward the health-reform cliff in an apparent lemming-like political suicide.

Why? Is the Democrats' obsession with health care driving them batty?

No, actually. Everything the Democrats are doing in regards to health care makes perfect sense if you remember 1) government-managed health care has been a fervent dream of the political left since Harry Truman, and 2) the election of an apparently popular liberal President in 2008, coupled with Democrats' simultaneous control of Congress, gave them a unique opportunity to realize this dream.

But the Democrats' window for action is shockingly narrow, and they know it -­ they not only need the political cover given by Obama (whose popularity has already eroded precipitously), they need to move as quickly as possible before the 2010 mid-term elections approach, the proximity to which will make the Blue Dogs increasingly skittish. That leaves 2009.

This is the reason the President and his allies are desperate to pass health care before the end of the year. They know that the political clock is ticking, that their dream is closer than it has been in decades, but is already receding from grasp.

With so much at stake, it is no wonder that many foolish, inappropriate, and uncalled-for things are being said. I just never thought I would see the day when a Democratic leader would compare Republicans to past Democrats.

As a slur.

Matt Patterson

Matt Patterson is senior editor at the Capital Research Center and contributor to Proud to be Right: Voices of the Next Conservative Generation (HarperCollins, 2010). His email is