March 27th, 2012
05:18 PM ET
11 years ago

Carville: A Supreme Court loss will help Democrats

(CNN) - While the Obama administration fights to protect the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, Democratic strategist and CNN contributor James Carville said a Supreme Court overruling may not be such a bad thing for the president, politically.

"I think this will be the best thing that has ever happened to the Democratic Party," Carville said Tuesday on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer."

He added: "You know, what the Democrats are going to say, and it is completely justified, 'We tried, we did something, go see a 5-4 Supreme Court majority'."

Carville, who gained fame working on Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign, predicted health care costs will only increase in the future, in which case Republicans will be to blame for leading the drive to expel a federal program designed to help Americans cover those costs.

"Then the Republican Party will own the healthcare system for the foreseeable future. And I really believe that. That is not spin," Carville said.

Republican and editor Erik Erikson, meanwhile argued that an overruling would represent more mainstream sentiments than not.

"Both sides, not just the Democrat side, even if the laws were upheld or struck down, there is a 5-4 conservative majority, and historically you see Republicans picking justices who have a greater propensity to gravitate to the left than you see Democrat judges propensity to gravitate to the right," Erikson, also a CNN contributor, said. "This will be an undercurrent issue for both sides, though."

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soundoff (153 Responses)
  1. Nancy Redmon

    Health care would improve with increasing the doctor's and nurses in this country. We could bring cost down with the simple thought of supply and demand.

    March 27, 2012 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  2. Tocelp

    If it looses the narrative will be: Look here, President Obama tried to do the number one thing that would give total control to the Government i/e The Democratic Party. Free Healthcare-vote for the folks that gave it to you!

    March 27, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  3. bemusedvoter

    It's instructive to listen to the recording of the session and strip away the partisan interpretations of the judges' words. It seemed to me that ALL were very thoughtful, and well-reasoned. Justice Kagan has asked some particularly cogent questions and has not followed the expectations of some of her detractors. Although I don't thin I would agree with her on many issues, I respect the thought she and the other justices are obviously putting into this serious issue.

    March 27, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  4. Abrevaderci

    Jimmy, is bailing as fast as he can. But his thimble size bucket (his argument) just isn't large enough to right Obama's sinking ship.LOL

    March 27, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  5. bemusedvoter

    I don't see that any of these justices are "activist". Listening to the give and take in the audio, I'm really impressed by all of them, whether I agree with them or not, and believe each is anchored in the law. It is still possible to interpret the law differently, as some of them do, without being "activist."

    March 27, 2012 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  6. Randy, San Francisco

    If the Affordable Care Act is invalidated by right wing conservatives on the SC, it will be a death sentence for many sick people.

    March 27, 2012 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  7. Falcon78

    No American can look themselves in the mirror and say that the government can force you to buy something. Case closed. Next case ...

    March 27, 2012 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  8. GonzoinHouston

    The SCOTUS has swung too far to the right in the last few years. Obama needs to replace at least one conservative with a liberal or at least a true centrist. First he has to win re-election, then the Dems can modify the filibuster rules to reduce the excessive (100+ per year) filibusters. Then we can see some of the changes this country desperately needs. The GOP has fought a 4-year obstruction battle, largely successful, to defend the laws passed in the W administration. We voted for change in '08 and the GOP has largely prevented it. Hopefully Obama will do better in his second term.

    March 27, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  9. Steve

    Overruling Obamacare would remove a major campaign issue from the Republicans, but not one the presumptive nominee would make. Whether the Supremes overturned Obamacare, the Republicans would not own the issue. It isn't like they repealed it.

    March 27, 2012 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  10. obamasux

    If James Carville says its the truth, not spin, you can take it to the bank. James is a paragon of truth, integrity and honesty........ No, I wouldn't buy a used car from this demagogue.

    March 27, 2012 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  11. Charlie from the North

    There has been a string of incredibly bad decisions that can be traced back to Bush V Gore. The court has gotten worse during the Bush Error and while I applaud Obama's appointments he has been replacing thinkers with thinkers. We need to send Scalia and Thomas and Roberts brochures for retirement communities. Theirs would be some pensions I would not mind paying.

    March 27, 2012 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  12. Sound of reason

    James Carville? Seriously? His 15 minutes were up a long time ago. HIs wife makes more sense than he does nowadays.

    And in light of the fact 72% of America thinks Obamacare is designed poorly, maybe flushing this smelly mess and starting over is what we need to do.

    March 27, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  13. Bounds Auctions

    Carville was right once: Its the economy stupid.
    Since then, a second rater. Why pay any attention to his opinion?
    It is imperative to the continuation of the American legacy of individual soveriegnty that the Obama/statist agenda be stopped somewhere. Here is a good place to draw the line. Its you or the state. Who do want making the decisions that will define your life, your health or your death ? You or the state?
    You or the state?

    March 27, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  14. Thom

    Thankfully there is a razor thin majority on the SC to support limited government. As I read the comments of leftists who are claiming there is a "right wing activist court" it really proves how divided we are as a nation. Listen, at least half of us in this nation don't want a nanny state. You're free to secede and form a totalitarian utopia but please, for those of us who value the individual over the collective and liberty over security – leave us alone.

    March 27, 2012 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  15. nopcspokenhere

    It is illegal. What will they mandate next that we HAVE to buy? Oh, James you people are going to spin yourselves into the dust bin of history right along with barry! Wait, no WE THE PEOPLE will sweep him OUT the house, so to speak!

    March 27, 2012 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  16. westandfree

    This dude has been out in the sun too long. Here is how you fix it without the mandate:
    1) Reform tort law. Most lawyers in Congress avoid this but, this will have the largest impact over anything. Mitigate insurance companies' risk and costs go down. Stop unfounded lawsuits, make the incapable pay court costs when they try to extort, it fixes itself.
    2. STOP MEDICARE AND MEDICAID FRAUD! The government can administer nothing! The reason everything in the federal government is politicized, is that it exists. Let privates markets work but, get a private enforcement bureau incentivized to identify and prosecute fraud.
    3. Reform the tax code. IT IS NOT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT'S MONEY!!!! People can buy what they want or need if you shrink government and create jobs. Carville isn't famous as far as I am concerned. He is blowhard who wants to grow government and hasn't earned a damn thing in his life.

    March 27, 2012 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  17. alwayswise

    Gotta love Carville. He keeps spinning and spinning and spinning just like a top, making lemons into cow urine that dems actually want to drink. How DOES he do that?

    March 27, 2012 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  18. Zadig

    In your dreams Carville>

    March 27, 2012 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  19. AZFelix

    Carville, Obama, democrats... all ready to tout their talents at being able to pick up a turd by the clean end and present it to you with a smile.

    March 27, 2012 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  20. alex

    Reading your comments here I see the stupidity of right vs. left. The supreme court far right? Do you people ever read the opininons after each case. Was the supreme court far right when they ruled on eminant domain? Have any of you ever read Ruth Bader Ginsburg's opinons, stop the nonsense. Hey Claudia, did it ever occur to you that Big Pharma will make out like bandits with Obamacare? Do you ever see how the gov't is going after raw milk, supplements, and other helath industries, especially non-gmo. Medicare broke, Social Security broke, I just moved in a new house and filled out a post office form to forward my mail, guess what happened? You already know. Now you people think gov't is going run all healthcare, you are out of your mind! Also, all freedom and liberty will be dead! Gone! Stop acting like SHEEP!

    March 27, 2012 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  21. Larrybudwiser

    James, love yah dearly, can't not like an old school dem but your party has been overrun by the looney left, seems like the party's over Jimbo. It is the economy stupid!! My bothers in the Operating Engineer's are all jumping ship now that barry nixed the XL Pipeline. The ship strated to turn when only 7% of stimulus went to infrastructure and Peliosi was screaming nonsense. Jimmy carter 2.0

    March 27, 2012 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  22. dryden01

    Progressives like Carville are masters of spin and self delusion. It is difficult to look and listen to him and not think how much he reminds you of the hillbilly from Deliverance. Even now he is telling Obama apologists to squeal like pigs over a predictable failure at violating the constitution. Bitter failure has a silver lining for Carville but all that will be recalled when the history is written was how naive Obama was in trying to get away with his political ploy. How quickly the world forgets that Roosevelt had the same problems with his progressive agenda and tried to resort to stacking the court Surely now Obama will want to add enough left wing degenerates to tilt the court in his direction.

    March 27, 2012 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  23. Ronnie

    Dems already trying to spin up en excuse if the mandated is thrown out.

    March 27, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  24. Ken

    One itty-bitty problem with all of these political comments. Federally mandated ANYTHING is unconstitutional. Politics really shouldn't have anything to do with it. (Wishfull thinking, I know.) Hopefully, the justices will all take a good fresh look at the Constiution. If they do, there's only one decision they can honestly make.

    March 27, 2012 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  25. CAWinMD

    With any luck, if the Supreme Court finds the individual mandate unconstitutional, they will keep the rest of the law, and send it back to Congress to find a different funding mechanism. That would be a hoot to watch during an election year...

    March 27, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
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