Why The Supreme Court Overturning Obamacare Would Be Good For Stark, Dems

CONGRESS 15 NOTES | Nevermind, Robert Reich is predicting the U.S. Supreme will uphold President Obama’s Affordable Care Act Thursday morning. The diminutive sage of most everything political wrote on his blog Wednesday he believes Chief Justice John Roberts will join Justice Anthony Kennedy and the rest of the liberal wing of the court for a 6-3 decision in favor of Obamacare. Reich’s opinion is based on the rationale Roberts needs to build greater faith in the court’s impartiallity along with a judicially illuminating appellate decision handed down by a conservative jurist last year that upheld the constitutionality of Obamacare.

Nerves across the country will definitely be frayed Thursday, but for endangered Democrats like Rep. Pete Stark, the dispiriting news might actually help their re-election in the fall. As ironic as it would seem for one of the authors of the landmark health care reform bill to prosper politically from a negative outcome, a candidate like Stark would greatly benefit from anger that will surely emanate from liberals, especially his progressive constituents in the East Bay who consistently desire the even more expansive public-option .

Aside from a bizarre string of public antics by Stark in April, a good portion of his slim seven-point primary advantage over Dublin Democrat Eric Swalwell was the fault of almost historically low turnout in Alameda County. If anything, it was conservatives who were slightly more enthused than staid liberals and independents. Most already believe Democrats like Stark will benefit from the residual effect of a November presidential election, so a little more encouragement can only help.

However, the connection between Stark’s background in health care legislation and his hand in Obamacare in 2010 has not been effectively fused in the minds of voters. That should change regardless of the high court’s decison Thursday. Really, its a win-win politically for Stark. If Obamacare is upheld, he continues trumpeting his involvement. If all or part of it is struck down, he and the Obama administration ride the enormous wave of discontent all the way to November. The issue is so full of positives that it really doesn’t matter what Stark’s opponent has to say on the subject. The potential for sour grapes tomorrow from Mitt Romney’s camp will likely not be part of the narrative for the race in the 15th Congressional District. Why? Swalwell is also a Democrat.

MAYBE THE TEA PARTY ISN’T COMING The Campaign for Primary Accountability, a national super PAC previously making overtures about helping Dublin Councilman Eric Swalwell in his race to unseat incumbent Rep. Pete Stark, may not have enough money to make much of a dent in the East Bay or anywhere this fall.

The Washington Post reported last Friday the non-partisan super PAC is running out of money despite counting on some of the richest conservative donors in the country. Texas businessmen Leo Linbeck III and Joe Ricketts are now pleading poverty, says the Post. “It’s a real opportunity; I just don’t know if we’re going to be able to afford it,” said Linbeck.

Although the group had a modicum of success in defeating incumbents across the country, it recently failed in turning away Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.). Rangel, Stark’s colleague on the House Ways and Means Committee, was believed to be a valuable target for the super PAC, but the Post reported it spent only $4,000 as of last week in hopes of defeating the long-time Harlem House member.

With a dearth of fundraising dollars, the Campaign for Primary Accountability appears to be downgrading its mode of attack to merely churning out increased voter turnout. In the East Bay, presumably that would entail appealing to conservative and independent voters. The same ones possibly angered by Obamacare and other effusive talk radio rhetoric, including, you know, references to birth certificates.

PAREJA (R) Last week, former 15th Congressional District candidate, Chris Pareja finally got around to what he should have done a year ago–he officially became a Republican. Pareja tweeted about his unsurprising move to the Grand Ole Party at a meeting of the Alameda County Republican Party last week. In the months leading to the June primary, some political consultants called his decision to appear on the ballot with the moniker, “no party preference” was a mistake. In hindsight, they may have been right, although not anywhere close enough to change the outcome of the race. Turnout was not only low last June 5, but the group Pareja was, in part, attempting to court–independents–stayed home. One consultant this week said just having an “R” next to Pareja’s name would have goosed his final tally a couple of points. Nevertheless, Pareja still finished with a tad under 22 percent of the vote.

Categories: Campaign for Primary Accountability, CD15, Charlie Rangel, congress, Eric Swalwell, health care, Joe Ricketts, June primary, November election, obamacare, Pete Stark, President Obama

7 replies

  1. you could use an editor: “…that the U.S. Supreme will upheld …” it's upHOLD.


  2. Right on; it might be better if court overthrows the affordable care act-it could lead to medicare for all or universal health care for all should obama win and if it helps stark the better. Tony Santos


  3. Yea, some improper use of commas and you spelled said wrong at one point. Decent article otherwise.


  4. Sorry. I uploaded the wrong version. Not only wasn't it spellchecked, but it was missing a third section on Pareja.

    I've been having trouble concentrating at one particular coffee shop in Alameda. A few people think an empty seat is an invitation. No matter that I'm typing on a laptop, tapping on an iPad and wearing earphones. I don't know how many clues I can give people that I'm working.


  5. I think with all this talk about “repeal & replace” I'm hearing on the news, Swalwell would be wise to use some double talk when talking to Tea Party idiots in his area. If he isn't already. 😉


  6. By MW:

    In regard to the re-election chances of many Democrats, and including Obama, in the imminent November 2012 election, I suspect the effect of the Supreme Court's ruling on Obamacare might turn out to be be almost totally irrelevant.

    In other words, I suspect such immediate economic issues as the real inflation rate will sink Obama and many other Democrats.

    While the government puts out all sorts of statistics that purport to prove that inflation is not too bad, however virtually any ordinary person who goes shopping can easily see that the inflation rate is through the roof, and regardless of any lies and garbage from official sources that supposedly “prove” that inflation is under control.


  7. I think on effective of bogus claims…

    Medicare Utah


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