August 18th, 2009
06:00 PM ET

Pres. Obama tough enough for the job?



FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

"Could Hillary Clinton have been right about Barack Obama?"

That's a quote from a Politico piece titled "Does Obama have the guts?" In it, Roger Simon reminds us how during the campaign, Clinton warned voters that Obama gave great speeches, but lacked the strength, toughness and will to get the job done.

Well, Americans will now get to see how President Obama governs when it comes to a divisive issue like health care reform. Even though there are many critics, will he push through on the public option - which is probably the best way to compete with the insurance industry?

And it's not just about health care... Some suggest the president is beginning to appear weak and wishy-washy on a range of issues - from gays in the military to immigration reform to apologizing to foreign countries, etc.

At times, the president appears to be ineffective at even leading his own party - as the Democrats wander around like a gaggle of unruly children. Mr. Obama ought to call a meeting of the Democratic leadership and tell them, "Look, I am the boss. If you don't like that idea, there are ways I can make your life miserable... especially when it comes time for re-election."

After all, there is something to be said for declaring: "I am the decider." President Bush may not have been our smartest president, but he made an effort to communicate that he was running the country.

President Obama is many things, including articulate, smart, polite, a gentleman... but can he govern when the going gets tough?

Here’s my question to you: Is President Obama tough enough for the job?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: President Barack Obama
August 18th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

People legally carrying guns permitted near president?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

In the Situation Room yesterday, we showed you video of a man in Phoenix, Arizona carrying an assault rifle to a protest outside President Obama's speech. Police say he was just one of about a dozen demonstrators carrying weapons.

A man is shown legally carrying a rifle at a protest against President Obama on Monday in Phoenix, Arizona.

In Arizona, anyone allowed to have a gun can carry it in public as long as it's visible. And the man - who had the semi-automatic rifle slung over his shoulder - said he was doing so because it's legal and he thinks others should do it more often. Just what we need… people wandering around with assault rifles slung over their shoulders at events where the President of the United States is present.

This is the second time in as many weeks that weapons have been seen near presidential events. In Portsmouth, New Hampshire last week, a protester had a gun strapped to his thigh.

Gun rights advocates say they're exercising their constitutional right to bear arms and protest - but critics say this is a disaster waiting to happen.

They insist people shouldn't be allowed to bring guns to an event where the president is - that it only distracts Secret Service and law enforcement who should be focused on protecting the president.

Secret Service has acknowledged the events in Arizona and New Hampshire... but says it's not aware of any others.

When asked if these individuals carrying weapons jeopardized the president's safety, they say "of course not," adding these people would have never gotten close enough to the president.

Here’s my question to you: Should people who are allowed to carry guns be permitted near the president?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: President Barack Obama
August 18th, 2009
04:00 PM ET

How should health care reform deal with illegal aliens?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

When it comes to the health care debate - many Americans are fired up about what reform could mean for illegal aliens. One Blue Dog Democratic congressman says the issue comes up at every town hall meeting he holds.

Many constituents at Congressman Allen Boyd's events have been opposed to the idea that illegals would get any benefits under the new bill. Boyd insists that won't happen. He quotes directly from the House Bill:

"No federal payment for undocumented aliens; nothing in this subtitle shall allow federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States."

But here's the problem: The way the system works now, illegal aliens - who often don't have health insurance and don't pay taxes - can go to a hospital emergency room and get treated for free... and nothing that's in this bill would change that.

Supporters of the president's plan mostly dismiss the impact of illegal aliens on our health care system... while critics argue that illegals are part of the reason costs are so high.

Since hospitals don't collect immigration figures... it's unclear how much people who are in this country illegally add to health care costs - but it's probably a pretty significant chunk of change.

Consider this: There are about 46-million people without health insurance in the U.S. Of those, the Pew Hispanic Center estimates that there are about six-million uninsured adults who are illegal; and 700,000 uninsured children.

Here’s my question to you: How should health care reform address the issue of illegal aliens?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Health care • Immigration