Carville: Political Advantage To Dems If GOP Kills HCR

Interesting thought;

On CNN's "State of the Union," Democratic strategist James Carville became the first leading Democrat to suggest publicly that there might be political advantage in letting Republicans “kill” health care. “Put a bill out there, make them filibuster it, make them be what they are, the party of no,” Carville said. “Let them kill it. Let them kill it with the interest group money, then run against them. That's what we ought to do.”

If the notion that the GOP killing health care hurts them politically, then I assume that also is true for Blue Dog Dems. It means that progressives can be much more aggressive with health care reform, including the public option. I do not know if Carville really thinks what he said, nor do I know id he is right, but I think if people start to believe it is true, then that strengthens the bargaining position of progressives.

Speaking for me only

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    The problem is that (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by andgarden on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:49:32 PM EST
    Republicans cannot kill the public option or healthcare reform by themselves. They would need assistance from the Ben Nelsons of the world.

    My proposition is that a bill comes out of conference with a public option, it will become law. No one Democrat wants to be responsible for causing the President to fail.

    It's true (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by The Last Whimzy on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:58:55 PM EST
    You can have 45 republicans vote against something and two dems vote against it too and then everyone says it's the dems fault it got voted down.

    I agree (5.00 / 2) (#5)
    by Steve M on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:59:08 PM EST
    they got away with it in 1994 because it was all done under cover of darkness.  If it's all out in the open, it will be very difficult for even the most conservative Democrat to join a partisan Republican filibuster of health care reform.

    I wish (none / 0) (#46)
    by weltec2 on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 07:35:31 PM EST
    this were true. I just don't see the Blue Dogs falling in line.

    This is why people (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Bemused on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:50:59 PM EST
    like him sicken me. It's a game and a way to make money and get publicity for him and his ilk.


    Yeah... (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by kdog on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:49:46 PM EST
    and why politics is a rather sickening business no sane person would seek employment in.

    I couldn't imagine going to work tomorrow and purposely f*cking up a task because it would make a co-worker look worse than me, and benefit me in a backdoor way...could anybody else here even imagine doing such a thing?  

    Of course not, the TL community has class and work ethic.  We should run the joint...well maybe not me, but the rest of you lot:)


    Nah (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 07:06:31 PM EST
    We suck too. Power corrupts.

    Ain't that the truth... (none / 0) (#37)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 08:37:19 AM EST
    that was the strongest message I got from the Marion Barry doc HBO is running...there was a guy who did a lot of good for DC before becoming mayor, and during his first term as mayor...but by the second and third term it was all about chasing tail, drinking, and drugging...high on power, living in the bubble.

    i don't think carville is saying (none / 0) (#19)
    by The Last Whimzy on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 07:10:23 PM EST
    purposefully screw it up.  

    to make your analogy work, you have to imagine your co-worker has made it his goal to keep you from accomplishing the tasks given to you by management.  

    and if you're certain your goal best reflects the goals of management, then by all means give your co-worker enough rope.  Get a new co-worker and then achieve your goals.

    in short, if the tasks don't get completed you have to prove due diligence on your part, and build a record of all the things your co-worker did to keep you from completing those tasks.

    you have to make it clear to management why it didn't get done.  otherwise, you're the one who might be filing for unemployment by the end of the day.


    I hear ya... (none / 0) (#36)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 08:33:41 AM EST
    he's not really saying screw it up on purpose...more like don't worry about trying too hard, when you fail you can always blame the other guy and still look good by comparison.

    Not as bad as failing on purpose, but almost.


    No (none / 0) (#38)
    by The Last Whimzy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 10:33:56 AM EST
    He didn't say that either.

    Then what does.... (none / 0) (#39)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 11:01:44 AM EST
    "let them kill it" mean if it doesn't mean "don't try to hard"?  Doesn't the Dem base want the D's to keep the GOP from killing it, or is the base only interested in Dem majorities like the party?  

    It means try hard (none / 0) (#40)
    by The Last Whimzy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 01:22:39 PM EST
    without worrying so much that they will kill it.

    If that's the message... (none / 0) (#41)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 01:30:48 PM EST
    my question is, that needs saying?  Good grief.

    I thought you always do your best, do what is right...and come what may.  If congresspersons need a reminder of that, they need to go back to 1st grade.


    sigh (none / 0) (#42)
    by The Last Whimzy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 01:38:03 PM EST
    yes.  i thought it would have gone without saying.

    Whew... (none / 0) (#43)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 01:41:24 PM EST
    I thought it was just me for a second there!  I'm glad this still goes without saying for at least two of us outside the beltway Whimzy!

    btw...is your moniker based on "The Last Waltz"?  


    could be anything (none / 0) (#44)
    by The Last Whimzy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 02:55:32 PM EST
    but it was inspired more by the movie "the last mimzy."

    really the point I think Carville was trying to make is that you can provide due diligence to prove you tried to work with someone to get something done but in the end if that person is hellbent to keep you from accomplishing that thing, so much so that you concede so much of the goal to make accomplishment null and void....


    That's politics (none / 0) (#12)
    by The Last Whimzy on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:10:14 PM EST
    I think there's a choice between tea that's become so it makes more sense to just put it up for a vote and take advantage of the electoral consequences.

    I don't always drink tea, but when I do ... (none / 0) (#13)
    by cymro on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:41:18 PM EST
    ... I prefer Earl Grey.

    But why are you posting about "a choice between tea" ?


    You are the most interesting tea drinker (none / 0) (#15)
    by andgarden on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:42:39 PM EST
    in the world.

    What do I know, but (none / 0) (#28)
    by lilburro on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 10:35:43 PM EST
    I think Carville wants this passed.  He's just willing to be far more hardcore than Obama about it.    What Carville is saying makes far more sense than anything Obama has said about his own health care ideas recently.  Throw down the gauntlet, and we'll boil down through the BS - do you really want to deny people healthcare?

    I think he's a necessary evil (none / 0) (#29)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 06:39:05 AM EST
    If he wasn't there the masses would be looking for someone like him to weigh in with some sort of commentary. I expect truth and justice out of bloggers.  It's the perfect forum for that.  But so many of them wish they were Carville and then they wonder why they aren't getting paid....cuz the Carville slot is taken.  If Carville and Begala where babysitting for you and the baby needed changed, after they had made that assessment they would then discuss the virtues of Pampers over Huggies in various situations.  Then they would note the baby did not have a rash but would discuss last weeks rash and argue about its core cause.  And when you got home the baby would still be dirty :)

    I would like to see the Dems say (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by MO Blue on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 05:52:32 PM EST
    You don't plan to vote for any health care plan. Based on that, we are going to rewrite the bills taking out the concessions we made to get your support.

    Is this 15-dimensional chess yet? (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by Cream City on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:00:24 PM EST
    It sounds too complicated and risky to be a reliable strategy.  The Obama administration does not seem as capable of creating public opinion as did the Obama campaign.

    Um no (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:04:51 PM EST
    One dimensional politics - if you are hurt by blocking my bill, I have leverage on you.

    Oh, good. So we're back to KISS (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Cream City on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:08:06 PM EST
    as in Keep It Simple, Stoopid?  Carville uses that acronym sometimes.  I rather wish he was running a war room on this effort.

    Of course, it's the opposite of PPUS.  So it's wait and see. . . .


    Shades of the 2005 confirmation fights (none / 0) (#11)
    by andgarden on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:09:45 PM EST
    Well, if that's the case, (5.00 / 3) (#7)
    by Radiowalla on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:01:01 PM EST
    then the progressives better get off the stick and start fighting for what they want.  What happened to all that enthusiasm and fire in the belly?    

    The Clinton health plan was killed by Democrats (remember Daniel Patrick Moynihan?)  and history is in the process of repeating itself.
    The GOP won't be the ones to kill health care reform.  It will be the lilly-livered, yellow-bellied Democrats.


    Huh? (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by weltec2 on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:07:39 PM EST
    I don't think James Carville merely thinks of it as a game. I think he is thinking like a strategist. If he can put a flicker of doubt into the minds of the Blue Dogs and Repugs that this can backfire on them, they might relent

    Carville is probably beingn straight (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Pacific John on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:41:19 PM EST
    This is in contrast to the Begala WaPo op-ed the other day that compared Obama to FDR. It was a more strenuous sales pitch than even Bill's at the latte convention, but too strenuous to be believed.

    Carville favors winning both in Congress and popularly. It will be fun to see if the brilliant people in the White House can figure it out.

    So (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 06:45:55 PM EST
    why aren't Dems throwing everything we want into it and letting the Republicans try (just try) and kill it?

    Because maybe Dems want what Republicans want?

    I'm off to see if I can invest in Maybelline or Clinique.  Lipstick stocks may be doing well soon, I hear.

    Great Idea (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by kidneystones on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 07:20:12 PM EST
    Carville is thinking like a strategist fighting the next election and if that's all that matters: winning elections, he's probably right.

    So, health-care fails, anticipated Dem losses in 2010 are kept to a minimum and Dems have another year to build support for a program they can then 'allow' Republicans to kill and maybe win again in 2012.

    The only folks who lose are those actually expecting Dems to, you know, govern.

    At the moment Dems are supporting a war without end in Afghanistan that British generals believe will continue for forty years.

    I politics of attack and destruction currently being practiced by Dems over the last two years pale before those practiced by Republicans over the last eight.

    Dems need to understand that if most Americans wanted universal health-care, America would have universal health-care. Some Americans want universal health-care of the sort we enjoy in Canada and the UK. But not all.

    As a fan of national health-care, it isn't clear to me that the 'public option' is workable or even benign. Dems have been talking out of both sides of their mouths for too long, indifference to the war is, IMHO, the most notable example.

    The UK news is filled with stories of soldiers being killed in Afghanistan. Now that a Dem is President opposition to US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has evaporated.

    The problem is that the public (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 08:02:34 PM EST
    does not want the planS being pushed by Obama.

    Somebody should tell James.

    Can the Repubs capitalize on shutting down Obama's plan? Hard to say, but it certainly won't hurt them with the Medicare crowd who have gotten a different view of them than they previously had.

    Will the Demos gain voters who wanted health care reform? No. They had those already.

    In the mean time a true single payer national plan modeled on Medicare is not in the picture because Obama doesn't have enough courage to introduce one and spell out what it will do and what it will not and most of all, what it will cost and how it will be paid for.

    And the reason is simple. Everyone is going to have to pay. If the Demos come in with free coverage for some they will lose and they know it. Yet if they tell their base that the "poor" is going to have to pay they will lose their base.

    It truly is a lose lose situation.

    We can find out (5.00 / 0) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 08:21:57 PM EST
    in 2012.

    We will find out (2.00 / 0) (#25)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 10:09:56 PM EST
    in 2012.

    Since you and I are at opposite ends on so many things I trust you have noted that I am, for a single payer national health care system and have been so stating for years and years and years.


    Single payer nice but tougher (none / 0) (#26)
    by Rashomon66 on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 10:29:14 PM EST
    I think single payer is the tougher sell here.
    But the Public Option should not be a loser at all. Matt Taibbi pointed out that this whole Health Care issue is like an auction with one bidder and that one bidder is the Democrats. They need to just ignore the GOP and the Blue dogs and dare them to filibuster.
    I mean it really is time to get this done. In 2012 we may still have the White House but the chances of having a strong Senate and House is not as assured.

    The issue is that the public (2.00 / 0) (#33)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 07:23:30 AM EST
    sees Obama's current planS as containing rationing, especially in Medicare.

    That may not be a problem for you, but it sends a chill up my old spine and the spines of millions like me.

    AARP has admitted within the past few weeks they have lost 60,000 plus members directly due to their position on the so-called health care reform which has turned into welfare for insurance.

    That has the politicians shaking in their boots.


    Ugh, the suffering of a lot of people (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 06:44:05 AM EST
    isn't going to have improved at that time either with this economy.  Yes, we will see.  What we will likely see is that what the Republicans have now become will set something else on fire again.  As people they are fine burning things to the ground.  They still don't seem to understand that it will burn your reelection down with it.

    Ummm (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by jarober on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 09:32:32 PM EST
    How exactly does a GOP with only 40 votes in the Senate, and a minority in the House, kill anything the Democrats want to pass?

    It's time for Democrats to "man up" and accept the reality that this bill will live or die based on one thing: Democrats.  Republicans can advocate and yell, but in the end, they simply cannot stop it on their own.

    just spin (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by diogenes on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 09:48:11 PM EST
    Carville's the biggest spinmeister in the world.  Nothing more.

    Do you want a single player plan (2.00 / 0) (#34)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 07:34:40 AM EST
    without rationing and the same services for everyone or do we  want a plan passed so that the Democrats can claim victory for a "plan?"


    Is this about politics or is this about health care for everyone?

    thread cleaned of a personal spat (none / 0) (#47)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Aug 19, 2009 at 05:57:11 PM EST
    between these two commenters. Stop the personal attacks please.

    Gotta love Carville! (none / 0) (#27)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Aug 17, 2009 at 10:35:40 PM EST
    He's awesome!  

    Wouldn't a REAL filibuster be fun?!  Let it rip!  

    I hope so (none / 0) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 06:48:28 AM EST
    but the punderings of Carville are very morphic.  Of course nothing stays the course like this new brand of Conservativism.  Even if the course is taking you over a cliff....you just ride it over and wave a flag all the way to the bottom, after the splat you can get a spot on Dancing with the Stars.

    I Think Carville Is Right (none / 0) (#32)
    by bob h on Tue Aug 18, 2009 at 06:49:41 AM EST
    Obama and Axelrod will move with alacrity to put the blame where it belongs, and the public will need little convincing.