Concord Coalition chief economist Diane Lim Rogers, a former Clinton White House economist, counts herself among those who think the problem is in the messenger.
"The Massachusetts race is not the real issue. The bigger issue with the Democrats is not that they don't have good ideas, because they do have a lot of good ideas. It's that they have not kept the American people engaged in the process," Rogers said.
"Take the example of health care," Rogers suggested. "The American people know that health care reform is going to be difficult and they intuitively understand that there are trade-offs in life and that health care reform can't be a win-win situation for everyone. Unfortunately, the president has not explained how health care reform will help the American people, preferring instead to just ask us to trust him. But, Obama needs to be more explicit than that. The fewer details the president provides about the true costs of health care reform and that enacting reform requires making tough choices, the more likely it is that the American people will say that 'It sounds like fantasy.'" "Many of the president's health care reform ideas, such as reducing the growth in health care costs by reducing wasteful spending, sound too good to be true," Rogers said.