Sanity Injection

Injecting a dose of sanity into your day’s news and current events.

Posts Tagged ‘Jay Cost’

Health care? It’s the economy, stupid.

Posted by sanityinjection on July 9, 2009

I commend to your attention this superb piece by Jay Cost over at Real Clear Politics. Cost’s main forte is statistical election analysis, but in this piece he examines the Obama Administration’s priorities and suggests that the President is making a mistake in trying to expand health care coverage while the conomy is still in crisis.

To briefly summarize Cost’s analysis: He argues convincingly that America elected Obama primarily to fix the economy. He then criticizes the President for allowing the Democrats in Congress to craft a stimulus bill that would not meet the goal of a short-term boost ot the economy (as we are now seeing all too clearly) and ramming it through so quickly that there was no opportunity to improve it. Now he’s trying to move health care legislation while voters are still waiting for the promises made when the stimulus bill was passed to be fulfilled. Cost argues that by misreading what is most important to American voters, Obama runs the risk of damaging his political fortunes along with those of the Democrat Party.

It’s not that health care reform is not needed. It’s that you have to clean up one mess before you create a new one 🙂

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The truth about voter turnout

Posted by sanityinjection on August 22, 2008

It has been a truism so far in the media coverage of the Presidential race that a big part of Obama’s strategy is the assumption that Obama’s unique qualities will drive up voter turnout among populations that have been underrepresented in previous elections, and that these groups (especially African-Americans) will make the difference in the election.

Jay Cost addresses this in the context of analyzing what Obama needs to do in order to win the state of Virginia, a traditionally Republican state with a large chunk of African-American voters and a demographic trend that favors the Democrats. Cost points out that any surge in black turnout for Obama may be offset by backers of Hillary Clinton who switch to McCain:

“Every previous non-voter who votes Democrat this cycle nets Obama one vote, but every typical Democrat who backs McCain nets the Republican two votes.”

For political junkies, Cost’s full analysis of Virginia is here: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/horseraceblog/2008/08/swing_state_review_virginia.html

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