What is truly remarkable, is that this legislation is the single largest spending and tax bill in our history that was passed solely along partisan party lines. To make it even more astonishing is how unpopular this piece of legislation is, the real problem is with how substantively awful the bill is but also how deeply dishonest and (possibly legally) corrupt the whole course of action has been. Real Clear Politics poll averaging site gives 57% against and only 36% in support of this bill. With this background, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, the majority leaders of both the House and the Senate expect to lose 20-30 seats in the House and perhaps 3-4 in the Senate.
Democrats currently hold an 89 seat majority in the House, and 8 seats in the Senate, with 2 independents caucusing with the Democrats to give them a filibuster proof 60 seat total. Commentators are predicting that Mr. Reid will lose his seat as he is currently polls worse than Danny Takanian (38% to 49% with 13% undecided) and Sue Lowden (40 percent to 45 percent, with 15 undecided). Mr. Reid will be the 2nd Democratic Senate Majority Leader to fall in an election (Tom Daschle of ND was the 1st).
Already 4 Congressmen from marginal districts have announced that they won't seek reelection next year because they don't want to face voters over their votes on the "Stimulus Package" as well as the health care bill. Even so, very few Democrats in Washington comprehend the depth and the intensity of the opposition to those bills. Nor should the health care bill be viewed in isolation. It is merely one part of the package that has seen passage so far. The omnibus spending bill included 8,500 earmarks, which vastly bloated it beyond what was necessary and was another record sized budgetary bill.
Jim Manzin in National Affairs magazine points out that,
"[Under Obama] the federal government has also intervened aggressively in both the financial and industrial sectors of the economy in order to produce specific desired outcomes for particular corporations. It has nationalized America’s largest auto company (General Motors) and intervened in the bankruptcy proceedings of the third-largest auto company (Chrysler), privileging labor unions at the expense of bondholders. It has, in effect, nationalized what was America’s largest insurance company (American International Group) and largest bank (Citigroup), and appears to have exerted extra-legal financial pressure on what was the second-largest bank (Bank of America) to get it to purchase the ¬country’s largest securities company (Merrill Lynch). The implicit government guarantees provided to home-loan giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been called in, and the federal government is now the largest de facto lender in the residential real-estate market. The government has selected the CEOs and is setting compensation at major automotive and financial companies across the country. On top of these interventions in finance and commerce, the administration and congressional Democrats are also pursuing both a new climate and energy strategy and large-scale health-care reform. Their agenda would place the government at the center of these two huge sectors of the economy…"If the deep-seated dissatisfaction that has been building since the passage of the swollen and mispent "Stimulus Package" continues, it's not out of the question that the Democratic Party could see a tidal wave of voter anger cause them to lose as many as 100 seats in the house and 13 in the Senate.
When viewed as a whole, these actions spell out a very different story than the one carefully crafted for Mr. Obama during last years campaign. He has (in concert with Mr. Reid and Mrs. Pelosi) revived the most awful feelings of the Democratic party – that of profligate, undisciplined, arrogant, lovers of overweening government programs, as well as a party that increases of taxes. The problems and tale for American politics in the near future has been set — traditional small government versus a gigantic bureaucratic government, capitalism versus European chic socialism, accountable and considered policies versus reckless and radical ones.