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Sarah Palin Suggests Passing Health Care Reform By Reconciliation Might Be A Good Thing Because It Would Elect More Conservatives

Reported by Ellen - February 26, 2010 -

Sarah Palin was the lead-off guest for two segments on Hannity last night (2/25/10) to discuss the lengthy health care summit earlier in the day. Although she accused President Obama of using the summit for “political posturing,” Palin spent her time on Hannity doing exactly that. Unlike Obama, she had little to say about health care policy other than a few well-worn talking points worked into vague, rambling declarations that first pronounced the summit unproductive and then later called it “very, very productive.” Then, in a shocking display of putting politics over public policy, or at least on equal footing, which seemed to fly right by Sean Hannity, Palin announced that if the Democrats passed their health care reform bill via the reconciliation process, it would only be a half-bad situation because it would ensure that more conservatives would be elected and “clean house.” UPDATE: Palin's own Tweet says she didn't watch the entire summit. With video.

Before bringing on Palin, Hannity falsely griped that the summit “wasn’t an event where dissent was permitted,” meaning, of course, that the Republicans had somehow been stifled. I don’t know what summit he watched but the one I saw showed plenty of debate from the Republican participants. House Republican Whip Eric Cantor seemed to agree with me. He told CNN that both sides had gotten an “adequate airing.”

But next to Palin, Hannity never sounded so intelligent, well-informed or insightful. Whatever coaching and grooming is being done for her, it clearly has not helped.

Palin started off bizarre, by conducting her interview from Alaska, outside, in what she said was 20 degree weather, without a coat.

She began by saying that she agreed with Michele Bachmann that, “Maybe the beer summit was more productive and fruitful than what we saw today coming out of the health care summit.” Palin added, “These guys shoulda popped some tops off some MGD’s and… gotten the work done.”

I hate to say this, but even Bachmann sounded intelligent, well-informed and insightful next to Palin.

Palin went on to complain about “political posturing” and then spent the rest of the segment avoiding any other kind of discussion – but with her unique syntax.

“The President kinda slid from the professor-at-the-lectern mode and slid right on into the moderator-at-a-meeting mode. Um, not a whole lot of passion for meeting the challenges that are brought to light when he talked about his proposal to reform, or take over health care, really. So, um, I don’t think a lot of success came out of this in speaking on the president’s behalf. But for the Republicans? Again with their free-market, pro-traditionally American, uh, free market principles that they want to see applied in solutions to health care challenges, I think that they did a great job.”

In fact, the Republicans did such a good job in Palin’s view that this unproductive, unfruitful day was actually a victory for them.

“See the Republicans have been asking for an ear in the White House to hear what their proposals have been… and yet they’ve been accused of being the Party of no… Today was an opportunity for them to show what they had been talking about all along and so again, that was a victory on behalf of Republicans to finally be able to express what some of these free market, patient-oriented solutions are… so that we can start meeting the challenges in health care.”

Somehow, though, Palin never got around to the particulars of any of those challenges or their wonderful solutions. But that didn’t stop her from deciding that the day had been “very, very productive” after all. Helpful and healthful, too.

“I think that some of the details we didn’t hear a whole lot about coming from the president and the bill that he is supportive of had to do with like price controls? Which, of course, will manipulate and distort America’s traditionally free market, um, way of doing business in our economy. And the price controls and other things we’ll hear more about in days to come. And in that sense, Sean, this was a very, very productive day. It was painful to sit there and watch this but very productive and healthful and helpful for Americans to see what had been discussed all along now out in the open and now Americans can start asking more questions, hopefully getting more answers to things like the price controls.”

Hannity asked what she thought the “political fallout” would be if the Demcorats used reconciliation.

Now, I can understand Palin relishing the idea that such an event would bring about great good fortune for Republicans. But I can’t understand how, if she really believes that the health care bill is so awful, she could even consider whether its passage might be a good idea. But she described reconciliation as a “double-edged sword,” which she repeatedly pronounced “double-edge-ed sword.” “Politically, this would be good for common-sense conservatives who want to get elected and clean house in (Congress) …but we have to ask ourselves is that worth it though… because the risk is this one-sixth of our economy… being so controlled by government?

In an obvious slap at Senator John McCain who, unlike Palin, was actually at the summit, Fox News producers slotted him after Palin and for only one segment. I wonder if they feel they got their money’s worth out of Palin. As her favorability numbers continue to plunge (and there’s no reason to think the trend won’t continue), you have to wonder how much longer Fox News is going to continue to enable her career.