TPM: Obama Pressuring Reid To Drop Public Option

Brian Beutler:

Multiple sources tell TPMDC that [. . .] the White House is pushing back against the [public option], in a bid to retain the support of Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME). "They're skeptical of opt out and are generally deferential to the Snowe strategy that involves the trigger," said one source close to negotiations between the Senate and the White House. "they're certainly not calming moderate's concerns on opt out."

This new development, which casts the White House as an opponent of all but the most watered down form of public option, is likely to yield backlash from progressives, especially those in the House who have been pushing for a more maximal version of reform.

The good news is Harry Reid is up for reelection next year. As I have written before, Obama has to publically take the heat for this if he wants it to happen. Reid can not, and imo, will not do Obama's dirty work for him.

Speaking for me only

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    Could (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by lentinel on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:20:54 PM EST
    anyone tell me why in the world Obama is so desperate to have Snowe's solitary vote?

    Is he so desperate for the appearance of bi-partisanship that he is willing to sacrifice us all?

    I think it's his own ass he's looking out for (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by NealB on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:53:34 PM EST
    Not that "bipartisan" cover for his failures will do him any good, and not that he's going to get it; but it's pretty clear to me that Rahm and the other political geniuses at the White House have persuaded him he's going to need it as the economy stays stuck in neutral for the better part of his whole first term. Typical politician looking out for his own interests.

    Typical politician (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by lentinel on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:26:41 PM EST
    "Typical politician looking out for his own interests."

    That pretty well defines someone willing to sacrifice us all.


    The messaging coming from the WH is fricked! (5.00 / 3) (#28)
    by ChiTownDenny on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:39:17 PM EST
    Multiple WH sources?  Valerie Jarrett?  What's the messaging?
    My understanding is that the WH doesn't think Reid has 60 votes with opt-out; the thought is a trigger gets 60 votes.  
    This WH has to think not only about its messaging but about its priorites, or, put simply, Sarah Palin may well have a career in politics in 2012.  
    I have never been more baffled by this administration as I have been the past couple news cycles.  This WH better understand HCR will determine election results for Dems beyond 2010.

    Quid pro quo (none / 0) (#43)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:27:50 PM EST
    So, if WH backs Snowe's trigger plan, has she agreed to back another stimulus package?  Joblessness is increasing, and Prez is taking the heat in the polls.

    You might have that backward (none / 0) (#64)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 11:14:05 AM EST
    if WH backs Snowe's trigger plan, has she agreed to back

    If Snowe agreed to vote YAY to get the bill out of the Senate Finance Committee looking bipartisan, what favor does Obama owe her?

    I think Obama's pattern is to take before he gives.


    Backroom Deal (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by BDB on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 08:51:05 PM EST
    The WH struck one with Billy Tauzin and my guess is there's one with health insurance, too.  Either that or they're raising money for Obama's re-election campaign early.

    That's the only reason that any of this makes sense.  The removal of single payer from the table (that pushes from the left for better policy).  The sacredness of mandates.  The unwillingness to commit to something most Americans want (even if I think they have no idea how watered down the real bill is).  

    The only reason single payer or a true public option or perhaps even the watered down House public option aren't moving is that what Americans want is no more relevant to President Obama than it is to President Bush.  If it were, he would not have handed trillions to the banks and failed to fight for cramdown.

    Obama is dancing with them that brung him and that's not the people who voted for him.


    He's still trying to work both sides (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by nycstray on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 10:22:53 PM EST
    Taking the big bucks from his buddies and working the OFA angle getting the grassroots to donate time and money. He's going to totally destroy his grassroots support by the time he's done with insurance "reform".

    Sooooo . . . . . (5.00 / 5) (#2)
    by nycstray on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:24:05 PM EST
    In less than 24hrs the WH has come full circle back to President Snowe's trigger?

    What dimension are we in now?

    This story after Valerie Jarrett... (5.00 / 4) (#3)
    by magster on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:26:14 PM EST
    ...makes the strongest statement in support of the PO that I've heard her make in a long time.  I do not know who or what to believe.

    I sure would like FDL, Kos and Open Left to expand their action alerts to Obama himself.  


    The changing story (5.00 / 5) (#14)
    by christinep on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:56:26 PM EST
    This seems to be a "batten down the hatches" time. The rumors, innuendo, different versions of reality or unreality fly.  In earlier days, my primary legal role was that of negotiator. What these swirling words and overall eddy effect bring to mind: The penultimate jabs and thrusts before we see the actual outline.  Everyone goes running to his/her favorite source and even the simplest statements sound contrived or forced or false. Certainly, we all have our favorite assumptions here. One of my assumptions is that each side (or variation of a side) has a special and timely reason to undermine the opposition with altered facts, versions, etc.  My question: If 5 people share different stories--each having been slightly or more altered to fit that person's own purpose--what do you get? For starters, those of us supporting a strong public option need to up the ante during the next 48 to 72 hours...then, hold on tight as the room and all the furniture spins wildly.

    They've got a house of cards (3.00 / 1) (#51)
    by NealB on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 07:12:34 PM EST

    I think we have left the land of (5.00 / 8) (#5)
    by Anne on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:29:59 PM EST
    dimensions, and entered into the Twilight Zone.

    Or maybe we have left the land of dimensions and entered the land of dementia; it's making me crazy, anyway.

    In any event, I'm glad we have finally settled on Republicans as being the ones with the best ideas for health care reform; I'm sure that will make for bang-up campaign material.



    We are back to where we started (5.00 / 7) (#6)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:30:54 PM EST
    the B.S. dimension.

    Seems to me that Obama has been wanting the public option to go away for some time but wants someone else to be held responsible for killing it.



    At the same time, (none / 0) (#44)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:30:02 PM EST
    he wants to be able to say he was for it if important for buoying his numbers in the polls.

    Nowhere (5.00 / 4) (#23)
    by lentinel on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:22:04 PM EST
    We are in the oneth dimension.

    What a different a couple of hours makes. (5.00 / 3) (#4)
    by lentinel on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:26:48 PM EST
    At  12:46 we read that Obama is pushing for a public option.

    At 3:15 we read that Obama is pressuring Reid to drop it.

    Alka Seltzer.

    Bungee-jumping on dry land (5.00 / 8) (#18)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:06:12 PM EST
    I'm beyond sick of it.  THe only thing worse than this was the night of the 2000 vote.

    Nice lotta games these folks are happily playing with our lives, eh?


    Great line (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by lentinel on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:20:57 PM EST
    " Bungee-jumping on dry land".

    What an image!


    If this is designed to keep (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by desertswine on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:30:56 PM EST
    people off-balance, it's certainly woking.

    It might be designed... (5.00 / 2) (#8)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:38:49 PM EST
    to get us all to just throw up our hands and say "forget the whole thing, I'll take chances in the emergency room and with the insurance sharks, you cats just give me a headache."

    11 dimensional chess baby (none / 0) (#16)
    by pluege on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:03:08 PM EST
    from the mind of obama.

    The result is revealed: (5.00 / 6) (#9)
    by pluege on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:42:43 PM EST
    Obama pushes out the pubic option in favor of snowe triggers.

    snowe votes against the HCR bill

    its play 97 from the democratic handbook: How To Pretend to Be For The Average American While Looking Out Only For Big Business.

    The play is: give the republicans what they demand even though they have no intention of supporting what they demand. Everyone thinks the democrats have just been tricked again when in reality they got exactly what they, and their republican cohorts wanted.  

    McCain's Style (5.00 / 5) (#10)
    by Stellaaa on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:45:01 PM EST
    This reminds me of the McCain style.  He is against torture, then votes for it.  Yet, what stays in people's minds: McCain is against torture.  

    We have moved from chess to three card monty.  Where is the queen, oops, there she goes, oops!!

    The confusion serves the Obama team well, it looks like he worked for it but does not have to risk anything.  The Kreative Klass will be telling us after they read one of those headlines, how he was for it and fought for it.  Axelrod at work.  

    This sounds like (5.00 / 4) (#47)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:35:18 PM EST
    Dem Prez's campaign strategy continuing:  He's against torture, but doesn't fully end it; he's against FISA, but votes to extend; he's the peacenik early opponent of the Iraq War who's still in it and expanding U.S. role in Afghanistan; he's the one who has the better plan to reform healthcare who will settle for a plan that provides little reform at great cost to average taxpayers and the government; etc....

    Good Gawd (5.00 / 9) (#11)
    by Faust on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:45:28 PM EST
    Can't he even have the common decency to remain irrelevant?

    It sure looks like the progressive campaign (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by magster on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:51:49 PM EST
    to pressure Reid has been working.  If Reid puts in public option and it doesn't garner 60 votes, there will be no option for Obama other than budget reconciliation.

    can't it just be revised and put up again (none / 0) (#15)
    by jes on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 03:56:29 PM EST
    without the the trigger. That is what I hear CNN is reporting.

    The role of the conference committee (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by christinep on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:04:41 PM EST
    Depending on the initial numbers reality (apart from leaks, hopes, fears and all that), the public option can always reemerge in the eventual House/Senate Conference Committee.  Right now, we are in political mettle-testing time.

    Time for a few progressive Senators (5.00 / 8) (#19)
    by magster on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:07:39 PM EST
    to indicate they'd join the filibuster of a plan that has a trigger.

    The incoherent chaos (5.00 / 6) (#21)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:16:43 PM EST
    of the "message" coming out of this White House has been baffling me since about January 21.  When you had an occasional burst of this kind of thing from the Clinton White House, there was an immediate uproar, people were reassigned or resigned, vows to "tighten up" were repeated, rumors of Clinton temper tantrums were leaked, etc.

    I don't get at all why this keeps happening and why Obama doesn't seem to care.  Either it's intentional or he's completely unaware of it because somebody <cough, Rahm, cough> is keeping press reports from him, or it's the strangest dam* way of running a White House I've seen in my 50 years of politics junkie-dom.

    When different close advisers keep going on television and contradicting each other, it's always been a sure sign there's bare-knuckle, sharp-fanged internecine warfare going on inside the White House.  Yet that doesn't seem to be happening, either.

    What on earth do Valerie Jarrett and Rahm Emanuel say to each other in meetings, I wonder?

    Well, if this is like sausagemaking (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by nycstray on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:42:52 PM EST
    this is going to be one heck of a bad batch of sausage. To much garbage in (you need decent ingredients to make good/great sausage) and definitely overworked. Going to be tough and hard to swallow . . . .

    Well, there's certainly some of that (5.00 / 3) (#31)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:52:24 PM EST
    but here, it's "BTD reports, you decide."  Ignore the blogs and just read the mainstream newspaper reports and you get the same chaos and incoherence.  It's absolutely emanating from the White House big-time.  That that makes the resultant daily "analysis" incoherent isn't really the analysts's fault.  They're perfectly capable of incoherence all on their own, but in this case, there's no way to even figure out what's going on, never mind make any sense of it.

    I take exception to your calling my analysis (none / 0) (#35)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:22:25 PM EST

    My analysis has been perfectly consistent.


    You talking to me? (5.00 / 3) (#41)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:06:57 PM EST
    I sure didn't call your analysis "incoherent."  Quite the contrary.  I think it's been superb on this issue, and have said so repeatedly.

    I was objecting to the suggestion that your analysis, by implication, was incoherent.



    My apologies but . . (none / 0) (#46)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:34:20 PM EST
    you did write "That that makes the resultant daily "analysis" incoherent isn't really the analysts's fault.  They're perfectly capable of incoherence all on their own, but in this case, there's no way to even figure out what's going on, never mind make any sense of it."

    I think my analysis has not been "incoherent" and I think I have figured out what is going on.


    One more time (none / 0) (#52)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 07:15:12 PM EST
    I Was Not Talking About You.

    I was talking about the folks whose analysis has been incoherent, and there are quite a few out there.

    I'm not sly, BTD.  If I disagree with you (or anybody else), I either say so clearly and directly, or I keep my mouth shut altogether.


    My analysis has been quite consistent (none / 0) (#34)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:21:50 PM EST
    of you actually paid attention to it.

    you never have so why start now?


    IMO it's part of a strategy to (none / 0) (#48)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:37:27 PM EST
    ensure plausible deniability on whichever course turns out to be most reviled by the public and/or most unsuccessful politically.

    My guess is that the Prez has taken each (5.00 / 3) (#26)
    by Radix on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:32:13 PM EST
    and everyone of these positions. A very skillful speaker can make every person listening to any speech, believe that they, the speaker, has just said exactly what they, the listener, wanted to hear.

    Excellent point, Radix (none / 0) (#38)
    by christinep on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:03:25 PM EST
    Duplicity (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by Coral on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:39:39 PM EST
    So that's what the eleven-dimensional chess game amounts to. And who are the dupes in this game?

    O.K. We've taken the bait (5.00 / 7) (#33)
    by NYShooter on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:15:16 PM EST
    The anonymous source bilge, projectile vomiting out of Washington, has created a  schizophrenic mish-mash, impossible to decipher. Some of the leaks are true, some not, some from knowledgeable sources, and some from trouble makers.

    So, why are we jumping at every comment; are we circus seals trained to snap at sardines? Isn't there even one reporter in Washington who can publicly put the question straight to Obama?:

    "Mr. President, are you aware that the information coming out of your administration regarding the Public Option is so convoluted, contradictory, and confusing that it's making your leadership a tragic joke? Do you, or do you not, intend to honor your campaign pledge, and throw your support to the Public Option, which is now being pushed by the Speaker of the House, The Senate Majority Leader, and the vast majority of the American people?

    No more speeches, Mr. President. Yes, or No?

    Oh, I would listen to one more speech (5.00 / 5) (#36)
    by Cream City on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:48:32 PM EST
    from Obama, if he would be about what he really believes, really will do, really will draw the line about, etc.

    But we are not going to get that from this guy.

    So I don't listen to his speeches anymore.


    Litmus test (5.00 / 3) (#37)
    by blogtopus on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:53:06 PM EST
    If anyone off the street can get decent cancer treatment next year without going bankrupt, then Obama has my vote in 2012. Otherwise, no.

    It lies at his feet; he could have taken steps, pushed hard, but he did not. I do not blame the Senators for watching their *sses; I blame Obama for not taking the reigns like he should have.

    Jeezus this was such a slam dunk this year. What a spineless twerp.

    Well, by that criteria, by all means vote (none / 0) (#42)
    by steviez314 on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:27:23 PM EST

    Considering all the wars they want to start, we'll need a bigger military.  And people off the street can then volunteer or be drafted and get excellent health care.


    Well, they are not spineless, the GOP. (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by Cream City on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 08:28:08 PM EST
    Twerps, yes.

    But spineless like these Dems -- including Mr. Post- or Bi- or Whatever-the-Prefix-This-Week- Partisanship?  No. The GOP never seems to feel the need to play nice.  (And that was the commenters' point.)


    not sure if this post means anything. (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by jeffinalabama on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:04:12 PM EST
    I had a 'minor' stroke while working to get in shape for Afghanistan. I am not ruled out fr xivilian deployment yet. Think i might have a year or so to wait... apropos of nothing, Harry Ried (sp?) was a boxer. He is used to geting hut, If Obama wants to hit him he knows how to take it and stillget his end result.

    Obama cand 'come after him' if harry wants the bill, but harry can deliver whatever bill he thinks.  

    I have criticized harry, but he's tought. if he decided on something, i will wait.

    right now i am waiting anyway. i need my eyes back.

    I Don't Get It (5.00 / 6) (#40)
    by john horse on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:05:01 PM EST
    Obama supposedly needs Snowe's support so that he can claim his bill is "bipartisan".  Reminds me of when Bush was pushing for privatization of social security.  He was able to get only 1 Democratic congressman to support it, the despicable Alan Boyd who represents (and I mean that loosely) my district.  Getting Snowe's vote will make Obama's healthcare plan about as bipartisan as Bush's effort to privatize social security. So if Obama guts the public option in order to get Snowe's support, people aren't going to look at this as a "bipartisan" bill.  The public will associate this as a Democratic party bill.  And if healthcare reform fails because it doesn't include a public option, then the public will associate that failure with the Democratic party.

    Obama has done one thing (5.00 / 5) (#45)
    by Fabian on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:33:26 PM EST
    consistently - failed to live up to my very modest expectation.

    No one seriously expected single payer health care, but we all expected something significant, some change that would make a difference, a step in the right direction.

    And yet...where I'm standing now, it looks like the only thing Obama has managed to do is to screw up health care reform in a largely novel way.  It's as if he looked at the Clinton attempt and said "That didn't work, so we won't do it that way." without deciding exactly HOW he would do it or WHAT exactly his goals were.  (Outside the apparent goal of passing some bipartisan bill that won't torque the big money insurance donors.)

    I wonder if Bush and Cheney are wondering why they didn't do this themselves!  Their bill would have been even more of a giveaway to the insurance companies, and it would have added to the already steaming pile of dung that their successors had to deal with.

    There it is: Obama is Not Bush (none / 0) (#55)
    by Cream City on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 08:29:10 PM EST
    and also determined to be Not Clinton.

    What does that leave?  Not Anything.


    He's the Zaphod Beeblebrox (none / 0) (#61)
    by Fabian on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 06:59:03 AM EST
    of the Powers That Be.

    Reference for anyone who doesn't know this fictional character:

    Zaphod is a self absorbed. charismatic pop idol who managed to get elected President of The Universe.  His job is to play the Ultimate Shiny Object so the powers that be can run things without interference.  Zaphod has no interest at all in governance and uses the perks of the office to jet set around the universe doing wild and crazy things, with the media hot on his tail.


    I love it! Zaphod Obama (none / 0) (#65)
    by allimom99 on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 12:04:22 PM EST
    Thus spake Cream City (none / 0) (#67)
    by Politalkix on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 12:57:05 PM EST
    that outside of Clinton and Bush, there is no politics!
    A lot of other people who were not indoctrinated into such bipolar thinking will beg to differ.

    Steps are being taken in the right direction (none / 0) (#66)
    by Politalkix on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 12:52:34 PM EST
    without the theatratics that most in TL can relate to. Link

    There is no question that steps (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Anne on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 05:07:51 PM EST
    are being taken, but whether one thinks they are headed in the right direction depends on where it is one wants to go - and where one is coming from.

    If one is looking for health care to be more accessible, more affordable and more portable, I don't think that's where this effort at reform is going.

    By delaying implementation for three years, and extending transition for some 4-6 years after that, the reform currently on the table is giving the industry a head start on making as much money as possible before they might be somewhat constrained by the legislation.  Who is going to be paying?  My guess is, people who already have insurance.

    By restricting any public option to those who cannot get insurance through an employer, the legislation is restricting the size of the pool and limiting its ability to have a significant effect on costs across the private insurance spectrum.

    With some 46 million people uninsured, and millions more who are underinsured or who still cannot afford the care they need after paying premiums and co-pays and meeting deductibles, a public option that might only cover some 10 million people eventually does not go far enough to help reform the system, and it is debatable whether this "camel's nose" plan can ever get the rest of the camel into the tent if it isn't structured to succeed.

    Steps, yes; destination? Like I said, whether one is happy at where this ends up depends a great deal on where one is coming from in the first place.


    Show me the bill. (none / 0) (#68)
    by Fabian on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 02:18:22 PM EST
    That's the only thing that matters - and the upperdown vote on it.

    Come On Fabian! (none / 0) (#69)
    by Politalkix on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 02:55:05 PM EST
    I wish you had stuck to the same demands in the 1990s (when you did not get a HCR bill during 8 years of a Democratic Prsidency) and during the Democratic Primaries when a candidate that most of TL fell in love with, only promised HCR with mandates and fines but no specifics on cost and coverage.....
    However, that is water under the bridge. I am confident that we will get a pretty decent HCR bill passed. If you have been patient all these years, you can surely be so for a few more months! HCR is closer to the finish line than it has ever been!

    "a bill" is all that Obama (none / 0) (#70)
    by Fabian on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 04:17:24 PM EST
    has promised us.  We've watched health care go from something that was largely accessible to something that separates the haves from the have-nots.  What people want out of HCR is something that fundamentally changes that inequity.

    Although people whine about Medicare and how few doctors take it, it's still a far cry from the reception people get when their answer is "Do you have insurance?" is "No.".  


    The HCR bill that Obama has promised (none / 0) (#72)
    by Politalkix on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 05:33:56 PM EST
    will definitely help people with no health insurance.
    I would like to understand better how you define "haves" and "have nots" before I write any further. Are non-unionized workers (accountants, engineers, etc), who get medical coverage through their employers but have to live paycheck to paycheck, "haves" or "have nots" according to you?

    Obama needs to realize... (5.00 / 3) (#49)
    by Jerrymcl89 on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 06:57:48 PM EST
    ... that even people who may not love the public option will respect him more if he shows a little spine.

    And if Reid succeeds in getting the Senate (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by kempis on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 07:09:43 PM EST
    to pass the opt-in PO--Harry Reid, of all people--then he will appear stronger than Obama....Think about that.

    what i want to know is, who's the gimp? (5.00 / 2) (#53)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 08:06:05 PM EST
    If the public opinion on public option is over 50% why has there been no strategy to bring the message to the hometowns of republicans?  Is every republican state against HCR?  Seems to me that PAC spending on saturating the market with the many benefits of Public Option would bring the citizens to ring their representatives.  

    You make them vulnerable, not your bill.  

    The difference between now and 1994 is people want it.

    In fact, the presidential approval rating is lower than the percentage of people who want a public option.

    The strategy of twisting the arms of people who have insurance is inferior to one of getting the people unhappy with their insurance to raise their hands up.  

    Ok, sort of off topic, (none / 0) (#20)
    by Stellaaa on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:14:10 PM EST
    But did you guys see the Billionaires for Wealthcare, Public Option Anne flash mob at the AHIP meeting?  

    They need to do that on a larger scale. (none / 0) (#25)
    by nycstray on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 04:31:35 PM EST
    Catchy little tunes work . . . and get on the news :) It would be great to see a large flash mob Annie.

    I'm willing to believe that (none / 0) (#32)
    by mg7505 on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 05:14:34 PM EST
    Snowe's vote or some equivalent gimmick is necessary for getting 60 votes. But only because "progressives" believed it to be so - this is the definition of a self-fulfilling prophecy. And shooting yourself in the foot. And criminally screwing over millions of Americans.

    health bill is a lemon (none / 0) (#56)
    by diogenes on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 08:42:01 PM EST
    Doesn't even start until 2013 and will go WAY over budget and make thousands pay to buy insurance they don't buy.  It will be unpopular (why do you think it won't fully take effect until after the presidential election?) and Obama desperately wants Republican support as political cover.

    The report is false. (none / 0) (#59)
    by s5 on Fri Oct 23, 2009 at 11:20:08 PM EST
    The White House has denied this report on the record.

    The White House is denying reports that officials are pressuring Sen. Harry Reid to scale back the scope of the "public option" that'll be attached to the Senate health insurance bill.  Talking Points Memo reported, based on unnamed sources close to the negotiations, that the White House is "skeptical" of a public option that includes a state opt-out choice, preferring -- and advocating for -- a public option that would kick in only if the private exchange failed to lower costs.

    "The report is false. The White House continues to work with the Senate on the merging of the two  bills," said Dan Pfeiffer, a top White House aide whose portfolio includes health care. "We are making good progress toward enacting comprehensive health reform."

    The TPM notes that Sen, Jay Rockefeller sent out a seemingly unprompted press release rejecting the "trigger" option.  It claims that the White House's pressure on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is based on President Obama's desire to accommodate the wishes of Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME), who supports a trigger-only public plan and who voted "yes" on the Senate Finance Committee's health care draft.

    Honestly I'm really sick of all these "some anonymous sources say" reports. If it's not on the record, I'm not listening.

    I'm more convinced than ever that the (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Anne on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 10:18:19 AM EST
    anonymously-sourced leaks are being engineered by the WH just so they can come out on the record and deny them.

    Note, if you will, that Pfeiffer's statement that the WH is continuing to work with the Senate on the merging of the two bills is not a denial of what was leaked; they could certainly be continuing to work AND be undermining whatever efforts the Senate is making to include a public option, no?  And how does saying the WH is working toward comprehensive health care reform dispute the leak?  It just doesn't.

    But it gives them an opportunity to talk about the process as if they are actually working for the American people, when it's been pretty clear from the get-go that they are determined to preserve as much of the industry status quo as possible, with some token and full-of-holes unenforceable "concessions" as the lipstick for the pig.

    I just find it hard to believe that the no-drama Obama WH would be so tolerant of the leaks if they weren't behind them in the first place.


    Someone said the report is false (none / 0) (#60)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 05:44:54 AM EST
    Other people say it is true.

    Not really the point though.


    sounds like (none / 0) (#63)
    by pitachips on Sat Oct 24, 2009 at 10:23:40 AM EST
    "journalists" and bloggers trying to get the story before it's even played out. at this point, i believe absolutely nothing and will simply wait until the bills come out of the house/senate.