While Lou Dobbs has always been an independent populist with some conservative bearings on certain issues -- illegal immigration chief among them -- conservatives should heed the old Reagan maxim when it comes to the former CNNer's populist conservatism: Trust, but verify.
After all, back in December 2006, fresh after the election which saw the return of Democratic control to the House of Representatives, Dobbs voiced support for Democratic universal health care proposals on a CNN special entitled "War on the Middle Class":
[T]his country has a responsibility to all the people in this room and Americans, all but the very poor and the very rich, are the ones being hammered because there is no program for the middle-class.
Julia Seymour documented the story at the time over at the Business & Media Institute Web site. You can find the full story below the page break:
The election has come and gone, but CNN’s Lou Dobbs continued pushing Democratic Party talking points in his latest “War on the Middle Class” special December 7.
The House Democrats Web site states, “We will make health care more affordable for all Americans” within the first 100 hours of their control of Congress.
Dobbs was paving the way with his town hall meeting, broadcast from Buffalo, N.Y., proclaiming that the middle class is nothing but “cannon fodder” in the battle to cut health care costs.
“We can talk about national health care, universal health care coverage call it what you want to, but this country has a responsibility to all the people in this room and Americans, all but the very poor and the very rich, are the ones being hammered because there is no program for the middle-class,” said Dobbs.
Dobbs blamed capitalism for the problem, saying that corporations are outsourcing because of high health care costs and “the federal government is saying we’ve got to have these laissez-faire capitalist policies because we want to be competitive.”
The CNN special also depicted outsourcing as a great evil and public education in desperate need of more “investment.” Dobbs let his personal bias shine through:
- “The too often unreported reality that more and more people in this country are simply falling from the middle class and fewer and fewer people who aspire to the middle class are able to achieve the American Dream.” Dobbs repeated the “death of the American Dream” media mantra, one of the Business & Media Institute’s Top 10 Media Myths of 2006.
- “The idea that corporate America can continue the business practice of outsourcing jobs, good paying American jobs, overseas to cheap labor markets, many times offsetting a job that pays $15 to $20 an hour, perhaps more, and replaces it with a job overseas paying about $0.42 an hour, let’s say, for example, I don’t know what it’s going to take for corporate America to find a conscience.” Dobbs regularly ignores jobs "outsourced" by foreign-based companies to the United States -- at least 5 million of them.