If Democrats really want to see health care – the cornerstone of the Obama presidency – succeed, they might want to consider putting a muzzle on their two highest ranking leaders in congress – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Harry Reid.

Having trust in their elected officials in Washington is something Americans are not taking lightly these days. No one likes to be lied to and it's especially grating to hear a Washington insider acting like a snake oil salesman when trying to push forward an agenda.

Earlier this week, Pelosi made a healthcare pitch at a conference for the National Association of Counties that punched her ticket for the Crazy Comment Hall of Fame. The speaker, who has been promising to put a health bill up for a vote since she took over the House gavel, started innocently enough, telling the audience it's "going to be very exciting."

Then came her comment that knocked many Democratic incumbents in this year's elections on their heels. She told the county officials that congress must pass the health care bill "so you can find out what's in it, away from the fog of controversy."

Passing legislation and not knowing what's in it is not a good line to sell to the American public, madam speaker.

Can you imagine a person buying a home without seeing a contract? Or a person buying a new car without knowing the model, the price or the warranty?

The team of Obama and Pelosi is the same that preached "transparency" in government after being swept into their leadership positions after the 2008 presidential election.

Pelosi's remark about approving a bill without knowing what's in it smacks of both arrogance and stupidity. Whether she gets enough cohorts in the House to follow her off the cliff remains to be seen.

Pelosi has stumbled over her facts before. During a speech early last year, she remarked that "500 million Americans lose their jobs every month."

The speaker's latest gaffe came only days after the unemployment figures were announced and Senate leader Harry Reid gleefully announced that only 36,000 people lost their jobs "today," therefore making it a good thing.

It's pretty certain that the 36,000 wage earners and their families weren't jumping for joy as Reid seemed to be doing after hearing that jobs report.

The public, tired of being lied to by elected officials in Washington, is now being asked to swallow a health care bill that will cost $1.5 trillion over 10 years. If incumbent Democrats are losing sleep these days, much can be attributed to the bumbling messages being delivered by Pelosi and Reid.

By Jim Zbick

jzbick@tnonline.com