Tuesday, September 01, 2009

It Is Possible To Pass A Public Option Now

It is possible to use reconciliation for some sort of non-co-op public option, and to find a majority in both branches of Congress for some sort of non-co-op public option. As such, a public option currently has not been passed because of political calculation, not because Democrats have no other choice.

Here is the choice:

  1. Pass a public option in health care reform, either using reconciliation or convincing some Senators to vote for cloture even if they don't vote for the final bill. The methods required to do so will cause damage to the Democratic congressional leadership and Obama administration's attempts to look bipartisan. Private health insurance industry groups will likely severely hold back donations, and target quite a few "moderate" Democrats in swing or Republican-leaning districts.

  2. Don't pass a public option in health care reform, either by trying to force the progressive block to fold or by passing nothing at all. This will probably mean fewer uninsured people are provided insurance, and that health care costs neither stabilize nor reduce their share of GDP. Further, progressive grassroots blowback will be immense, at least by the standards of progressive grassroots blowback.

This is a choice. Democrats can pass a public option if they want to. If all goes awry, don't let Democrats tell you after the fact that they had no other options. Tell them that there was a viable path to the public option they could have followed, but they chose not to follow it for political reasons.

Read it all at Open Left

No comments:

Post a Comment