at least asking one of the candidates about the problem of pre-existing conditions and how their approach would deal with it?
Those are the first words I wrote on a napkin watching the debate. I was at the National Democratic Club, waiting for my wife, who arrive part-way through. We lost signal (Direct TV) at about 9:40 so I did not see/hear the entire debate. And as I write this with MSNBC playing in another room I just heard an ad attacking Rick Perry for running Gore's 1988 Texas Campaign - didn't hear whose ad it was.
Tomorrow my students - AP and regular - will have a discussion about what they noted watching.
Below the fold I will offer my other notes on the napkins at the Club.
I wonder how you can talk about energy policy without some discussion about air and water pollution.
I heard attacks on "imported oil" as part of energy policy, with no mention of the new pipeline, which if the oil were used in the US would be imported oil. I wondered why no followup.
And in noting that, I think in general the quality of the questions were good, but that appropriate followup was sometimes lacking.
I listened to Ron Paul come out against Medicaid - thanks for the gift!
I also heard Ron Paul say "It was not all that great in the 80s" - cannot we find someway to use those words in the general when whomever the Republican nominee is starts waving the flag of Ronald Reagan?
Then in defending his inoculation of young girls, Rick Perry said "There's a long list of diseases that cost the state, cost our country" as a justification for the program. Hmm, is not that the first step towards insisting upon mandatory things in medicine in order to save the governments (and thus the taxpayers) money, and would not that lead towards justification for individual mandates - how different is that than mandatory inoculations?
"This is a human tragedy we're talking aboutn " - Jon Huntsman on unemployment. If that is a tragedy, why is not raising taxes a greater priority for the Republicans? Cannot the Dems use that line in the general, and not just in the Presidential race?
I heard Rick Perry blame the low education performance in Texas on Mexican immigrants, and oh by the way, Texas does NOT graduate over 80% of its students - not if you track them from 7th grade, and not even if you give them an extra year to get through 6 grades. Try real numbers statewide in the low 60s, and in the inner cities below 50%.
"First we have the fence" - Mitt Romney on fixing immigration. And when asked he was never willing to say fine or otherwise punish employers of any kind for hiring illegal immigrants - I wonder if that might have been influenced by the fact the lawn care company working at one of his properties used primarily illegals
and Michele Bachmann's answer on illegal immigration in the Southwest is to quote Hispanics in Florida, in other words, she can tell us the Cuban Americans resent Mexican Americans.
Herman Cain said bluntly "empower the states" on economic matters, health care, but then the logical followup was not asked - would he or anyone else on that stage (except Huntsman) so empower the states on marriage equality?
"We've elected a guy who's never worked in the private sector" - Mitt Romney attempting to institute a new qualification that would disqualify among others FDR and for all practical purposes Dwight Eisenhower (a couple of years in a sinecure as President of Columbia University while preparing to run for President).
I wondered why no followup to Perry on Libya. But Harris did challenge Obama on Reagan's "freedom agenda" which would seem to have supported the idea of intervention in Libya. I noticed that none of the other candidates really seemed to want to deal with that.
Santorum challenged the others on their isolationsim "Ronald Reagan was was committed to a vision of America as a force for good around the world."
Only HUntsman was willing to challenge the group think on Global Climate Change.
And Perry would not cite a single scientist who agrees with him on climate change and anthropogenic causes.
Oh, and by the way, there were no scientists who with respect to Galileo "outvote him for a while."
Perry bragged about reducing emissions in Texas - but should not he then be challenged on why bothering to do that if in fact science did not support human influence in climate change? Why was he not nailed on that contradiction.
My sense is that were lightening to strike and Huntsman actually got the nomination, he is by far the scariest possible opponent of the 8 on the stage.
I wanted to get my thoughts down before I hear from my students tomorrow.
But what do I know? Just a high school teacher of government.
It was "very interesting" as Arte Johnson used to say on Laugh In. But then I remember the rest of his line "but stupid!"
Oh, and folks - Social Security is NOT in immediate trouble, and the easiest fix is to simply raise the cap on earning subjected to the taxes.