Howard Dean: Obama faced “populist revolt”

Howard Dean has revealed key polling data which shows that the defeat in Massachusetts was due to dissatisfaction with Obama caused by his moderate healthcare bill.

Former Democratic president hopeful, Howard Dean, has revealed key polling data which shows that the Democrats’ defeat in Massachusetts was due to dissatisfaction with Obama caused by his healthcare bill being too moderate.

Speaking on BBC Newsnight last night, the architect of President Obama’s 50-state strategy said:

“We did some polling on that overnight, it was very interesting. Eighteen per cent of the people who voted for Scott Brown were Obama voters; of those, by 3:2 they wanted a public option in the healthcare bill which meant they thought the bill didn’t go far enough.

“We then polled Obama voters who didn’t bother to vote – of them, 6:1 decided they wanted a public option and they didn’t think the bill went far enough.

“So this is not, contrary to what a lot of American pundits are talking about, this is not a revolt of the right, this is Barack Obama’s core base not thinking that we’ve done what he was asked to do.”

Watch it:

Mr Dean added:

“I think in general the President’s done a very, very good job and he doesn’t get much credit for it. He’s done a teriffic job on the environment, he’s restored America’s good name around the world. I am disappointed in healthcare, I think we’ve missed a golden opportunity, I don’t the opportunity is over yet and frankly I think it maybe healthy to have lost a seat…

“He’s a very smart president, I think there’s a lesson for everybody – I hope they draw the right one. The lesson is not to move further to the right and compromise more, that’s clearly that’s a losing proposition. The message is to speak to your base, to stand up for what you believe in …

“I think strong leadership matters a lot, I think the President’s capable of strong leadership and I think you’ll see that from now on.

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12 Responses to “Howard Dean: Obama faced “populist revolt””

  1. Peter Ptashko

    RT @leftfootfwd: Howard Dean: Obama faced “populist revolt”:

  2. Clay Harris

    RT @leftfootfwd: Howard Dean: Obama faced “populist revolt”:

  3. John Booth

    Howard Dean wasn’t so conciliatory in December, when the Senate bill was being debated. He really should challenge Obama in the 2012 Democratic primaries. WE NEED DEAN

  4. Matt Volatile

    If the polling truly reflects this attitude – and I have no reason to believe it doesn’t – then those people are self-defeating idiots. How does voting for someone whose election will make it harder for Obama to pass his reforms help anyone who wants more reform? The bill is in the sorry, toothless state it is because Obama had to clip it to appeal to the ignorant Blue Dog democrats and their ignorant constituents (Death Panels! More Deficit! Socialism! Fascism!), so voting for a situation which will necessitate more clipping and more emasculation of the bill is entirely counterproductive!

  5. Claire Spencer

    Reading about the "populist revolt" against Obama on @leftfootfwd. If true – wtf? How will that strengthen the Bill?

  6. Thomas Byrne

    I wouldn’t trust merely his word to be honest, has the polling data been released?

  7. John Booth

    @Matt V

    There are two things here. There are Democratic-leaning independents who didn’t turn out to vote, and so made it easier for Brown to win. There are Republican-leaning independents who may have voted for Obama last year, simply for change. And this year they went back, for change. I mean, it’s analogous to anyone who has voted for Labour in the past few elections, voting Tory this year because they want better economic management. It is stupid, but it’s how at least 50% of global citizenry work.

  8. Benjamin A'Lee

    Republicans won in Massachussetts because people think Obama is too moderate, on healthcare etc.

  9. Tony Yarusso

    RT @bma Republicans won in Massachussetts because people think Obama is too moderate, on healthcare etc.

  10. jacksmith

    A LINE IN THE SAND – From jacksmith – WorkingClass

    My Fellow Americans and People Of The World

    A strong Government-run MEDICARE like Public Option is STILL! CRITICAL!

    We have had a long hard struggle to find out what would be the BEST! that this congress and the Whitehouse could do to fix our highly dangerous, poor quality, most costly, and MOST! disgraceful healthcare delivery system in the world. It is clear that congress can do much more for the American people than what is proposed so far.

    It is clear that congress can pass a strong GOVERNMENT-run public option CHOICE. Available to everyone on day one. Expand Medicare and not levy any new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. LET THIS BE YOUR LINE IN THE SAND!

    Lastly, there can be NO! INDIVIDUAL MANDATES without a strong Government-run MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. Or the American people WILL! and SHOULD! revolt with an all out CIVIL WAR against congress and this Government.

    House and Senate progressives and the tri-caucuses should aggressively push for the inclusion of a strong Public Option, Medicare expansion, and no new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. If the obstructionist kill meaningful healthcare reform, then you should kill this bill. Because it will be far worse than the healthcare disaster we have now. It’s failure will be on the obstructionist heads. And they will be punished and replaced.


    What is proposed in the Senate bill is the worst case scenario for health-care reform. It would shift trillions of taxpayer, public and private dollars into the hands of the private insurance industry (The single most costly, deadly and dangerous product sold in America). And it would compel by law millions of Americans to financially support this oxymoronic criminal enterprise. You cant have a individual MANDATE WITHOUT A STRONG PUBLIC OPTION CHOICE!

    You will have NO! realistic way of controlling cost and quality. Cost will continue soaring through the roof bleeding the American people dry, and KILLing our economy. And our quality of healthcare will continue to decline below our current ranking of “WORST! quality of healthcare delivery in the developed World”.

    From the very start, the American people have been crystal clear about what they wanted. They wanted a humane single payer system like the rest of the developed world has (HR676). Or at least a humane strong GOVERNMENT-run public option CHOICE!! This is what the American people gave the democrats control of the house, control of the senate, and control of the Whitehouse to do.

    Those of you that can, should prepare now to remove every member of congress that fails to support YOUR healthcare reform with a strong Public Option, Medicare expansion, and no new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. Run against them in teams if you have to. But take them out. And replace them with a strong single payer or PRO PUBLIC OPTION CHOICE candidate.

    Now! is the time to bring maximum pressure on your members of congress. Contact your representatives and spread the word.

    The Public Option


    I have to tell you now that the H1N1 virus is a man-made WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION! and TERROR! It is a WEAPONIZED version of a flu virus. It has swept the planet infecting millions. And causing a global pandemic that has killed tens of thousands, and injured millions.

    The H1N1 virus is the product of the DISGRACEFUL, GREED DRIVEN PRIVATE FOR PROFIT MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX! It was released in the U.S. in Texas in early January of last year, but not recognized until around April 2009 in California. The reason I know this is because when it came to America, it came to see me FIRST! How sweet…

    This was around the time the MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX! assaulted the Whitehouse with all their devils deals to cripple and weaken YOUR! healthcare reform. Especially your right to have a single payer system like HR676 (Medicare For All) which most of you wanted.

    They don’t even want you to have your HUGE!!! compromise position of a strong government-run MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. To compete with their DISGRACEFUL, GREED DRIVEN, MURDEROUS, PRIVATE FOR PROFIT PRODUCT (The single most costly, deadly and dangerous product sold in America).

    They also wanted to take away your rights to have your government meet it’s responsibility to use it’s full power to regulate, negotiate, and control drug cost, healthcare cost and quality. Something every other civilized country in the developed World has done for it’s people. Their Greed! moral degeneracy and lack of patriotism knows no bounds.

    Many of you will remember that before we knew about H1N1. I posted a open message to the President and Congress warning them to be vigilant about their health, and cautious about any medical advice they received. As I said then “they will not hesitate to try and hurt you”.

    The U.S. and the World have been under a BIOLOGICAL TERROR ATTACK! for over a year now. It is CRITICAL that We The People Of The United States take away control of our healthcare system from the GREED DRIVEN MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX!

    For our own National security, and the security of the world.

    A Strong, government-run, MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. Available to everyone on day one, with the full unfettered power of the federal government to regulate, negotiate, and control cost and quality. Would be the most workable way to deal with this global crisis at this time. Including patent suspensions as needed for national security or the greater good.

    As an American I invite the peoples of the World to help us fix our healthcare crisis. And bring pressure on our government to meet it’s responsibility to protect global security by controlling, and removing the corrupting influence of GREED and the PRIVATE FOR PROFIT motivations from healthcare in the U.S. and around the World.

    I call on the governments of the World and the global intelligence community to track down these MASS MURDERERS, and bring them to justice. CONNECT THE DOTS! And be vigilant that they don’t slip in another viral strain on you under the cloak of H1N1 sequestration.

    Further, the proposed patent protection on biologic’s must be stripped from the US bill. And greatly shorten/restricted, or abolished completely. This is a grave danger to humanity and global security.

    I think President Obama is doing the best he can at playing the disastrous deck of cards he inherited from the previous administration. And I think he is doing an excellent job. But the wolves and devils of the medical industrial complex! are trying to exploit, and take advantage of his good heart, and desperate desire to help suffering Americans. But we must be strong and insist that healthcare reform be done right for the American people. Or everyone loose’s.

    This is all I can say in a message post. I’ll try to find a way to tell you more later.

    God Bless You My Fellow Human Beings

    jacksmith – Working Class

    p.s. The so-called nominal H1N1 virus is designed in such a way as to make it more lethal to children and young adults. The medical community must be more vigilant of secondary bacterial infections in the young caused by H1N1. And remember, a viral infection is also a transfer of genetic code to you. Think about it, and be vigilant. 🙁

  11. Elaine Decoulos

    I am on the ground here in Massachusetts and will give you my view of what happened in this extraordinary election. For the record, I was in the minority and voted for Martha Coakley on Tuesday. I think Howard Dean’s polling is probably right, as illogical as it seems. Scott Brown charmed the electorate and they fell for it. Martha Coakley has limited charm, but I believe most Mass residents agreed with her policies. That is the madness of it all.

    It also appears Mitt Romney may have masterminded Brown’s campaign, judging by the huge smile on his face when he introduced Scott Brown after winning.
    Scott thanked two politicians: Mitt Romney and John McCain. Very interesting indeed and no one is picking up on this. Note that Mitt Romney once ran against Ted Kennedy in the fight of his career.

    Although I was not in Mass for the Democratic primary in early December, I was in London trying to resolve my long standing libel claim(!!), this appears to be what happened. Martha won the primary and assumed she had the election in the bag and went on cruise control, apparently with the state Democratic Party in tow. She and they did not believe they had a fight on their hands to secure a seat held by Ted Kennedy for 47 years. If Rep. Mike Capuano had won the Democratic primary, I believe he would have beat Scott Brown and as I seasoned politician, would have noticed what was happening.

    Scott Brown then started with a TV ad in late December/early January using of all people, President Kennedy, talking about lowering taxes. It caused an uproar. Martha then started with her very negative ads, overlearning the negative and previously effective ads used by the Republicans, normally abhored by the Democrats. She is an effective prosecutor and knows how to attack, but the Republicans changed strategy. Scott Brown did not have any negative ads. Rather, his other ads showed him going around city neighborhoods, meeting, greeting and shaking people’s hands, something Martha did not do.

    Scott Brown also had lots of internet ads, asking people to donate or volunteer, the week before the election. Martha’s internet ads started the day before the election. So, he modeled Barack Obama’s use of the internet in his campaign with Teddy Kennedy’s meet and greet in the neighborhoods! He used Democratic tactics, charm and personality to get elected. I do not believe it had anything to do with issues. People in Mass are also fed up with their local state Democratic politicians, some of whom have recently been charged with corruption.

    It was all about charm and personality and Howard Dean’s polls suggest this. That Mass voters fell for it is unbelievable. They are usually not so easily duped and I believe will be greatly disappointed. He said he was an independent, but who did he meet with in Washington today? John McCain!

    As I stood in the voting booth to cast my vote, I was tempted to write in a candidate: Ted Kennedy Jr.!

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