David Brooks: Romney Has a Secret Health Care Plan No One Knows About, But It's a Good Plan
From this Friday's PBS Newshour, we have yet another example of how PBS is doing their best to show they can be as bad as Fox or some of the other cable media outlets, with the inclusion of hackery like this from David Brooks every week.
While discussing the fact that Mitt Romney doesn't want to let the public know too many details about his plans for the economy, or health care, or much of anything else for that matter and would prefer to spend his time "laying low" and trashing President Obama and hoping the voters turn to him as an alternative, we found out that apparently David Brooks is capable of reading Mitt Romney's mind.
That or he knows what the rest of us know, and that it's no secret at all what Mitt Romney would do if elected, which is overturn the Affordable Care Act if he regains the Congress as well, take us right back to the status quo before the law was passed, tort "reform," deregulation and enact Paul Ryan's budget. And as E.J. Dionne rightfully pointed out, Romney doesn't want to talk much about the details of what he'd like to do because the public won't like it and it will lose him the election.
David Brooks on the other hand, just loves Romney's "secret" plan that he is supposedly yet to tell us about. That goes without saying of course, because Brooks is paid enough in wingnut welfare every week to write his terrible column at the New York Times and to appear on shows like this one, that he doesn't have to worry about not having insurance or adequate medical coverage.
Transcript below the fold. It's a pretty sad day for Brooks when even Judy Woodruff does a double take on him and has to ask him what the hell he's talking about as she did here.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal is out editorializing, saying that if only Mitt Romney would put out some policies of his own, that it is not enough to, hey, remind everybody that the president's policies are working.
They said something like, Americans already knows the president's policies aren't working. We want to know what his prescription is.
DAVID BROOKS: Yes. Well, that is what we pundits do.
DAVID BROOKS: We always want details. We want something to write about.
And so I believe that too. There is a big debate.
JUDY WOODRUFF: But are you surprised The Journal is -- a conservative. . .
DAVID BROOKS: Right. Well, there are a couple things here.
Why The Journal and Rupert Murdoch have been critical -- and they are sharing a lot of criticism floating around conservative circles, which the Obama camp -- which is that the Romney campaign has not been sure-footed, doesn't have the A-Republican team on board. They have just been less than aggressive.
And so I sort of agree with some of that. But there's a difference between campaign people and pundits. And we always want the substance. We want something to debate. And their strategy, whether it's right or wrong, their strategy is let's lay low. Let's focus all the attention on Obama. Just lay low, be as boring as possible.
The country likes boring right now. Let's focus on that guy. And that is their strategy. It's really bad for us. And maybe, if you were running a campaign, it may be what you would opt for too.
JUDY WOODRUFF: What do you make of the criticism from The Wall Street Journal?
E.J. DIONNE: Well, first of all, it is a really bad day in a Republican campaign when there is a long Wall Street Journal editorial criticizing your campaign.
And I think, on the one hand, conservatives have a point, because with 8.2 percent unemployment, the incumbent is not supposed to be ahead of the challenger by eight points in the swing states, which is what some of the recent polls show. So there is something to that.
I think the problem for conservatives is, what they want Romney to do is to go out and defend very, very conservative policies. The Romney campaign knows that a lot of these policies will not be popular. But Romney also doesn't want to break with the conservatives. So, they're stuck in this netherworld.
I think, if Romney did what the conservatives want him to do, it wouldn't help. But, in the meantime, it's not clear what his convictions are. So he's in a real box.
DAVID BROOKS: Right.
And if I were Romney, I would probably err on the side of, I am going to say something unpopular, but this is what I believe. I think his primary challenge right now is to show the country that he actually believes in stuff, he's consistent.
JUDY WOODRUFF: So, you think he's being too cautious by doing what you were describing. . .
DAVID BROOKS: I do.
JUDY WOODRUFF: . . . just playing it close?
DAVID BROOKS: Right.
So after the health care decision, Romney could have come out there. He has a health care plan. And it's pretty detailed, at least within, I would say, this little box he keeps in the subbasement of his 12-car garage in deep secret.
He's not letting anybody know it, but it is a secret plan, and it's a pretty good plan.
And I would like him to say what it is, in part so he can say, this is what I believe.
JUDY WOODRUFF: You know that he has a plan, but you are saying. . .
DAVID BROOKS: Well, he has announced the outlines of his plan. That's public. I also know that he has the private details of the plan which is in secret.
But it's just fleshing out the plan he has announced publicly.
E.J. DIONNE: And the problem is, it looks like the plan that John McCain put on the table four years ago, which President Obama, then Senator Obama, trashed to great effect in the election.
I don't think the plan would be popular if he put it out there, which is why it is in the subbasement.
DAVID BROOKS: It happens to be popular with people like me.
JUDY WOODRUFF: So that's why he's keeping it secret.
E.J. DIONNE: Right.
DAVID BROOKS: That's why, yes.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Because you are in the minority. You are a columnist.
DAVID BROOKS: Well, I like. . .
E.J. DIONNE: He leaks it to you, but not to the public.
DAVID BROOKS: I like being a part of the reality principle.