President Obama put on a man-behind-the-curtain act for an obliging national media Monday to say the health-care reform plan that bears his name is working just fine – except for a few technical problems.
Pundits, and probably most of the conscious public who aren’t wearing Obama blinders, saw it differently, according to the early Twitter reaction.
This is just incredible. Utterly incredible. It is as if nothing has happened.
— Charles C. W. Cooke (@charlescwcooke) October 21, 2013
Well, Obama acknowledged a few things had gone wrong. But the big thing was that it’s heading in the right direction.
“We did not wage this long and contentious battle just around a website. That’s not what this was about,” Mr. Obama told supporters during 25-minute remarks in the Rose Garden, according to the New York Times.
The statement alone indicated ignorance, some tweeted.
Serious question: Is Obama being accurately and fully briefed on the problems with the site? Because it sounds like he isn’t.
— jimgeraghty (@jimgeraghty) October 21, 2013
If he isn’t, it would mean he’s also not reading newspapers and has no idea what’s on the evening news. In other words, he has no clue what a disaster the rest of the country is seeing happen before its eyes.
But pay pay no attention to the website issues, the president said.
“The product is good. The health insurance that is being provided is good. It’s high quality and it’s affordable,” Mr. Obama said. “We know that the demand is there. People are rushing to see what’s there.”
Even liberal columnists weren’t buying that, though. One of Obama’s chief cheerleaders, the Washington Post’s Ezra Klein, wrote that the speech sounded oddly disconnected from reality.
So far, this seems weirdly similar to the speech Obama would’ve given if the exchanges were working fine
— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) October 21, 2013
As a whole, though, at least so far, the national media lapped it up. The Times first story never even mentioned the woman who almost passed out on stage right behind Obama. USA Today, continuing to cover itself in shame as an administration mouthpiece, =mentioned her at the end of a story that led with “A defiant President Obama ….”
CNN, to its credit, led with the embarrassing spectacle, saying the moment “summed up … Obama’s effort to downplay problems” with Obamacare.
Conservative radio host Laura Ingraham summed it up even better.
— Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) October 21, 2013