Jonah, I think you are exactly right about much of the political press misreading health care and then downplaying the degree to which it has hurt the Democrats in this election season. The same dynamic has caused some political reporters to ignore the trends in public opinion on health care since the legislation passed, which have not been very encouraging for the Democrats. The polls are reported on (here’s an example from Politico just this morning, for instance), but they don’t seem to get integrated into the larger sense of what’s ailing the Democrats in this election season. Health care isn’t the whole story, to be sure, but it’s an important part of the story, and I think Jay Cost is (as usual) quite right to say that it was especially important in first separating many independent voters from Obama — putting them in the habit of not agreeing with him or trusting him. He has not given them much reason to break that habit since.
by Yuval Levin