Avoid the terrorism comparisons

AVOID THE TERRORISM COMPARISONS…. Rep. Virginia Foxx’s (R-N.C.) looked pretty ridiculous yesterday when she said Americans have “more to fear” from health care reform than “from any terrorist right now in any country.” But it seems the health=terror concept is catching on in GOP circles.

House Republican Conference Vice Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), who is leading this week’s campaign by GOP women to attack the House Democratic health care bill, on Tuesday compared the proposal to an “internal” terrorist attack.

McMorris Rodgers initially avoided endorsing comments made Monday by her colleague, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.)…. But when pressed on whether the bill represented something as grave as a terrorist attack, McMorris Rodgers drew a line between the nature of terrorism and the effect of the Democratic proposal.

“I would say it’s the difference between an internal versus an external attack. Yes,” McMorris Rodgers said. The Democratic bill “is internal. This is rocking our foundation.”

Given the prevalence of this talking point, it almost seems coordinated. Foxx compared reform to terrorism yesterday. Rep. John Shadegg (R-Ariz.) made the same comparison last week. McMorris Rodgers raised the point today, as did Glenn Beck and conservative radio host Neal Boortz.

Far be it for me to give reform opponents advice, but my hunch is this isn’t going to sway people — equating health care reform and terrorism tends to appear insane to casual observers, and Democrats aren’t exactly going to feel intimidated by unhinged rhetoric that sensible people won’t take seriously.