RAMESH PONNURU: Why Obama Won’t Listen to Reason on Obamacare.
The core problem with his speech was not that he overestimated the merits of Obamacare (as much as I believe that he did). Nor was it the partisan silliness in which the president sometimes indulged. It’s that he refused to acknowledge that conservatives have reasonable disagreements with him about the direction of health-care policy.
Obama believes that only comprehensive insurance policies are real insurance. Conservatives generally believe, by contrast, that people should be free to buy cheaper policies that protect them only from financial catastrophes arising from their health needs.
It’s a difference that leads to others. Obama says that people who are having trouble buying insurance on Obamacare’s exchanges should receive more generous subsidies. The conservative alternative — relax the regulations that make the insurance unaffordable for them — is unacceptable to him because it would be a retreat from comprehensiveness.
All of the president’s shows of open-mindedness include similar caveats.
“I won” is not indicative of a open-minded thinker willing to listen to others and reach a consensus.