WASHINGTON (CNN) – On the heels of Congressional Democrats rolling out a draft of their health care reform proposal, a Republican strategist said Sunday that President Obama’s ambitious plans to remake the nation’s health care system are part of a larger pattern of government spending and intervention that should be cause for concern.
“The Barack Obama experiment is beginning to scare people,” Republican strategist Alex Castellanos said on State of the Union before he cataloged the hundreds of billions the new administration has spent helping General Motors and putting in place an economic stimulus package.
“When we’re talking about 17 percent of our gross national product - on health care, that’s what we spend. But, if that Barack Obama experiment with our health care, if that doesn’t work, we’re also talking about human lives. We’re also talking about the quality of our health care.”
Democratic strategist Donna Brazile sees the Obama administration’s unprecedented intervention in the economy and private industry very differently.
“We’re in this position because we’re in a deep recession and the financial markets collapsed and credit dried up and the government has intervened,” Brazile said Sunday in response to comments by persistent Obama critic Republican Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama.
“I don’t think this is a long term solution but I think we’re taking the necessary steps as a country to ensure that we rebuild the private sector so that every American can enjoy the benefits of living in this wonderful and prosperous country.”
As for the impending fight on Capitol Hill over health care, the Democratic strategist was blunt.
“This is going to be a long, hot summer . . .,” Brazile told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.