Blogger polls: political benefits of health care bills and Nobel prize, alienation of independents?

This week´s National Journal poll of leading political bloggers had three questions. In the first, Left bloggers were asked “on health care reform, what outcome would most benefit Democrats in the 2010 midterms?” Right bloggers were asked the same question about Republicans. Nobody picked the Baucus bill as likely to lead to the best political outcome for one party or the other. The vast majority on the Left said that something like the House Committee bills would most benefit Democrats. A slender majority on the Right said that the passing nothing would most benefit Republicans.  I disagreed, and wrote, “The worse the better, from a purely political viewpoint; so passage of something like HR 3200 would be best for Republicans in 2010. But for the physical and fiscal health of the American people, the alternative approaches proposed by Cato and the Independence Institute would be far better.”

The second question asked Left bloggers how worried they are that Democrats are alienating independents. Right bloggers were asked the same question about Republicans. The Left was more worried about this than the Right. This made sense to me, as I wrote “”The national Democrats are alienating independents so fast that the Republicans can’t keep up.”

The final question aksed “On balance, does winning the Nobel Peace Prize help or hurt President Obama’s image at home?” Almost all the Left thought it helped, and most all the Right thought it hurt. I agreed with the latter: “Even the strong Obama supporters who I’ve talked to think the prize was ridiculous. For swing voters, it highlights Obama’s rhetoric/achievement gap. The principle that good intentions and sincere effort are good enough for a Nobel prize suggests that Sarah Palin’s autobiography should win her the Nobel Prize in Literature.”

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