To "Protect" The Blue Dogs, Scrap Health Care Reform?

Digby gets it right:

According to Mike Viqueira on MSNBC, Obama told the progressives in congress on a conference call this morning that on health care, they need to worry about their fellow members in districts that voted with McCain in '08. I guess he figures that those conservative districts are going to be appeased by some sort of "trigger" or a plan without the public option and that those guys in tough districts will be rewarded for making that happen.

I think that's about as delusional as the teabaggers, frankly. If those McCain voters are upset about health care reform, the only thing that will appease them is total defeat. . . .

Yep. This is obvious. The strategy actually requires letting those Blue Dogs run as Republicans who can brag about stopping "death panels." Personally, I think this is disastrous for the Blue Dogs politically (and coincidentally Obama) also. For some reason, base intensity is a political concept not understood in the Beltway.

Speaking for me only

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    I think the GOP understands base intensity... (5.00 / 8) (#1)
    by jeffinalabama on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 10:42:51 AM EST

    Yeah I was going to say (5.00 / 8) (#2)
    by Faust on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 10:55:12 AM EST
    I'm pretty sure right wing base intensity is understood pretty well. They've been showcasing it for the last month and calling it the "American people."

    Can we call it the No We Can't (5.00 / 8) (#4)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:00:37 AM EST

    you're on a roll today, oldpro! (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by jeffinalabama on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:03:15 AM EST
    That's right (5.00 / 4) (#15)
    by SGITR on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:38:45 AM EST
    This protection of the Blue dogs, aka: give them all the power, which was predicted by many would happen if Obama were elected, isn't just a tip of the hand, it is an In Your Face of what Obama's full intentions are.

    Last Hope = Deaf Eared House Progressives who stand proud (A lot of good their letters to him did huh?).

    I would say that No We Can't is the underlying theme to the speech. But of course he is not going to say that out loud on TV. Even though we the base now know that his capitulation to the Blue Dogs is Presidential Seal Official he will stand up there like he has many times before "smiling and lying" to all of us in the most disrespectful of ways.

    No We Can't will be the silent undertone during his speech. But overtly his speech will try to be in so many different ways, as usual, CYA.

    Last night Obama officially gave us permission to give up on him. It's him and the Ben Nelson's versus us. Forget hopes of anything else.


    What's the point in keeping em' around (5.00 / 6) (#6)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:08:59 AM EST
    if the best we can say is they are ornamental and the worst we can say is they are obstructive to getting a liberal platform passed anyway?

    It's swell to say we have majority. It doesn't mean bupkiss though if you are unwilling to utilize(and yes take some RISK) to get your agenda passed.

    Well, actually there is a point (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:19:53 AM EST
    if you think back over the last 8 years and if you remember that Bill Clinton prevented all that for 6 years all by hisself...or put it off, anyway.

    Having the majority means setting the agenda...if you dare...but it also means preventing the enemy from setting it.


    But Blue Dogs aren't in the majority (5.00 / 6) (#10)
    by Cream City on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:22:10 AM EST
    since they're not voting with Dems.  Why "protect" people who won't vote with the Dems?  Why protect people who, therefore, really are Republicans?

    As regards to our negotiation discussions, (5.00 / 4) (#34)
    by ruffian on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:15:10 PM EST
    what is Obama saying we even get in return for protecting the Blue Dogs on health care? Are they going to go along with stronger environmental protection legislation, liberal SCOTUS nominations, a Truth Commission? Anything at all that makes this worthwhile?

    All the Senate majority gets us is guys like Max Baucus and Joe Lieberman retaining their committee chairmanships.


    We get to say we have the majority (none / 0) (#35)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:17:52 PM EST

    Well, the Blue Dogs will, in turn, (none / 0) (#55)
    by KeysDan on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:24:25 PM EST
    support any war funding requests.

    They 'make' the majority by (none / 0) (#12)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:26:11 AM EST
    voting with Dems on procedural votes...at a minimum.  They also, by vitue of being elected, prevent some Republican from having a platform.

    And they also (5.00 / 5) (#18)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:41:17 AM EST
    prevent Democrats from passing bills that are actually GOOD for people as opposed to the poison that the blue dogs propose....so back to CWaltz' point.

    Not that I really blame the blue dogs.  Obama (I almost said Bush) is the blue-dog in chief.


    Not really. Do the math. (5.00 / 4) (#58)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:40:46 PM EST
    Do the Dems in both houses have working majorities without the blue dogs?  In the Senate, probably yes.  House? No.  Hence, some compromise.

    But the House blue dogs only number 52 while the House progressive causes numbers 81...57 of whom have rattled the White House cage with a threat to vote NO nuless there is a strong public option...with no more concessions.

    So...this is a staredown.

    Which is why we need an FDR or an LBJ or even a Hubert Humphrey.  It's called leadership.


    Maybe it's part of my 2008 Obama love (none / 0) (#42)
    by magster on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:43:54 PM EST
    but I think Rahm Emanuel has been a much more pernicious influence on Obama and how Obama picked his cabinet, advisors and legislative strategies.  

    It's hardly an excuse for Obama since Obama picked Emanuel, but I would bet Obama's picks were Emanuel's recommendations, and Emanuel has had his own agenda all along that was not simpatico with Obama's campaign promises.  Now Obama relies on bad advice while Obama's agenda has been slowly eroded away over nine months into this joke of an already lame-duck administration beholden to the Blue Dogs.

    Ultimately, it's either that Obama is weak, or he is disingenuous. Which is worse?


    Ahhhhhhh it harkens back (5.00 / 2) (#47)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 01:11:54 PM EST
    to the good ol' days when my choices were corrupt or clueless. Gosh, how these past months have flown by.

    And (5.00 / 6) (#49)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 01:29:48 PM EST
    Bush was a good guy he just had that dastardly Cheney makin' him do bad stuff.  Bush is forgiven, right?

    Or as they say on Laugh In:  "The DEVIL made me do it!"


    The Devil Made Me Do It, (none / 0) (#56)
    by KeysDan on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:37:46 PM EST
    was also Alexander Haig's (Reagan's first Secretary of State) line in the Iran/Contra episode--even funnier (without the ha ha's) than Laugh In.

    Yeh, and Haldeman (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by Cream City on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:06:49 PM EST
    made Nixon do it, too.

    You wanted Chicago politics, you got it -- Obama and Rahm Emmanuel.  Maybe you just didn't realize that rough-and-tumble Chicago politics is not the way it works in D.C.?  (I recall JFK's great line on D.C. -- but he had been in the Senate for a long time so knew how it works there.)


    Mistakes were made? (5.00 / 3) (#64)
    by Spamlet on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 03:28:54 PM EST
    Why use the passive voice ("Obama's agenda has been slowly eroded away over nine months")? Rahm serves at the president's pleasure, as you pointed out.

    Picks for his (5.00 / 4) (#68)
    by cal1942 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 06:15:06 PM EST
    economics team were made by Robert Rubin's son.  

    Beyond that Obama is 100% responsible for everything in the White House.  Blaming advisors simply means that he's not qualified to be President.

    His staff is what he wants.  


    in other words (5.00 / 3) (#26)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:00:22 PM EST
    they are ornamental. They are going to stand in the way of any real reform just like the opposition party(heavy on the opposition portion) but they aren't REAL Republican opposition so somehow they should get a pass for standing in the way of real reform.

    I'm not anxious to spend years in stalemate(and I daresay the 40 million odd people without healthcare and the other portion of the electoraTE that has it but is waiting for the other shoe to drop would disagree) just to get out of a debate with the GOP on the merits of prioritizing problems(Let's face it there were something like 3 flag burning instances in 365 days I think its safe to say a flag burning amendment is a waste of time when you have 40 million instances of people without health care and another lord knows how many who have it but will go bankrupt anyway) By the way, we WON that debate which is why the Dems have the majority(and for bleepin sake the Presidency).


    If you are unwilling to (5.00 / 8) (#20)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:42:56 AM EST
    use the majority then your opponent is setting the agenda anyway. The electorate is not going to tolerate inaction or handwring where the Dems opine "If only we had 100 Senate and 435 House votes." They are perfectly aware that the GOP get things done with a SLIMMER majority. Heck, Bush got things done when his party was the MINORITY in the Senate and the House.

    I believe I did say... (5.00 / 4) (#30)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:06:42 PM EST
    "...if you dare..."

    Daring requires leadership.  Obama is a few quarts low.  He has the votes but can't seem to bring himself to use them.


    Leadership? (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:53:35 PM EST
    Hmmmmmmmm Do you suspect he didn't realize he wasn't solely applying for a marketing job and would need more than a good slogan for 4 years?

    i dont think obama is quarts low (5.00 / 4) (#45)
    by sancho on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:58:46 PM EST
    on leadership. he's an able blue dog leader. maybe even a fierce one. that's his political agenda.  

    Could be that Obama standing with (5.00 / 9) (#57)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:39:50 PM EST
    the Blue Dogs is not Obama failing to lead but rather him leading in the direction he wants to go.

    Nothing else makes sense (5.00 / 4) (#62)
    by ruffian on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 03:01:25 PM EST
    given all the facts. I think you nailed it.

    Could be. n/t (none / 0) (#60)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:43:19 PM EST
    Yeah (none / 0) (#22)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:46:21 AM EST
    but Bush passed bad policy, Obama wants to pass good pol....oh woops... ;-).

    Heh (none / 0) (#43)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:50:28 PM EST
    Apparently, he's content to pass NO policy if it means he has to take a calculated political risk.

    And this isn't even a huge risk considering a solid majority suppot a public option.

    As I said yesterday, can someone from the circular firing squad shoot me and put me out of my misery already. ;)


    Slightly disagree (5.00 / 5) (#69)
    by cal1942 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 06:30:39 PM EST
    As a man of no conviction he'll sign whatever piece of sh!t crosses his desk as long as he can disingenuously label it reform.

    He doesn't care if he throws the 'base' under the bus.  He doesn't like the 'base' anyway.

    So far as good policy is concerned it should be clearly understood that he has no regard for actual policy content.  His only regard is process.  To Obama, bipartisanship is an end not a means. When that's understood every act is clear and the outcome of every issue is unsurprising.


    We'll see (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 09:04:28 PM EST
    He strikes me as a guy who wants to have his cake and eat it too. I'm sure they are strategizing with how to toss enough under the bus but not "too many" that it might have a cost for him later on down the road. This is going to be about how cohesive the base can be IMO. If he senses a fracture somewhere in the public option folk he'll exploit it of that I have little doubt.

    Exercise in futility... (5.00 / 4) (#74)
    by NYShooter on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 10:40:31 PM EST
    Trying to figure out who, or what, Barack Obama is; or what, if any, base values he holds.

    C.E.O's, 4-star Generals, or committe chairmen, aren't necessarily the best choices, but rather are people who never stand out. By simply keeping their heads down, taking no risks nor making any controversial decisions, when the time comes, they're the last one standing.

    I will never forget the contribution that "great American," Sean Hannity, made during the primaries, when addressing a live audience of rabid Obamabots  he asked, "name me one thing Obama has done." The utter silence was so  thunderously deafening Hillary should've used the clip in every one of her ads.

    Governing was simply never his goal.

    And it shows.


    That incident you describe (none / 0) (#79)
    by cal1942 on Sun Sep 06, 2009 at 04:44:15 PM EST
    The silence in response to what has Obama ever done.

    I can see it all now ... after a couple of minutes of embarassing silence a guy in the back stands up and proudly shouts out

    'he backed down to the nuclear power industry when he was a State Senator'


    "I know, I know!" (none / 0) (#80)
    by NYShooter on Sun Sep 06, 2009 at 04:54:04 PM EST
    In its 104 year history, Obama was only President of the Harvard Law Review to have NEVER written a paper for peer, or any other review."

    What's that? Oh, you meant what he did do."



    As I recall, he was right about the Iraq War (none / 0) (#81)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Sep 06, 2009 at 05:29:04 PM EST
    without ever actually being personally responsible for a vote on the AUMF, and what he would have politically endured because of that same fictional vote :)

    And Obama is allowing the enemy (none / 0) (#39)
    by sallywally on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:26:35 PM EST
    to dictate nearly everything - and they're still screaming bloody murder about him.

    Where can this ultimately go? They're practically fomenting revolution.

    I wonder if they'll try to impeach him at some point. Maybe then he would "get it."


    Base intensity (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:17:18 AM EST
    Every time I see one of those PHRMA ads telling me I should thank my Democratic senator for supporting "bipartisan" reform, I have to change the channel.  Oh, freaking please.  Are Democrats trying to turn off the Democratic base?  Because that's exactly what those ads do.

    Did PHRMA know they would undermine base intensity when they "agreed" to air ads for Democrats? Me thinks so.  It almost feels Machiavelian. Did President Rahmbo know?

    No. But President Snowe did. n/t (none / 0) (#9)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:21:48 AM EST
    So many presidents . . . so little (5.00 / 7) (#11)
    by Cream City on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:24:01 AM EST
    power for Dems.  Huh, I guess that elections don't have consequences . . . or not quite as expected, unless all the presidents use their power, not just some of them.

    To govern is to choose. n/t (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:28:10 AM EST
    Channeling (none / 0) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:41:38 AM EST
    Jean Edward Smith.

    I try to be selective...only the best. n/t (none / 0) (#36)
    by oldpro on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:22:16 PM EST
    Film at 11: Dems hate the left (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by lambert on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:01:36 PM EST
    If the Blue Dogs didn't exist, it would be necessary to invent them.

    One word: Primary nt/ (none / 0) (#73)
    by Coral on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 09:46:17 PM EST
    Delusional is right (5.00 / 7) (#29)
    by ruffian on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:04:46 PM EST
    No Dem, in any district, gets helped by passing a crappy plan. That's what the WH seems to be missing.  It's like they really are playing chess-like political games, and forgetting there is real policy going on here, that people are either going to like or hate, and all Dems are going to get the credit or blame either way.

    Just frickin' do what is right and the elections will take care of themselves. I think the WH is showing just as little faith in government at the Republicans are. Maybe they know something I don't.

    The insurance industry gets quite a bit of help (5.00 / 2) (#61)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:44:54 PM EST
    if Congress passes legislation that contains mandates, subsidizes and no cost controls.

    IMO without government intervention and funding, the current private insurance and employer based system is not sustainable. Bad legislation will keep a very bad overpriced system alive longer at taxpayer expense.


    Sadly, I disagree. (none / 0) (#50)
    by ghost2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:00:05 PM EST
    No Dem, in any district, gets helped by passing a crappy plan.

    Unfortunately, the politics works differently, and the WH knows it only too well.  That's why the plan starts taking effect only after 2013.  By the time, its flaws are known, the midtern elections of 2014 are passed.  

    Meanwhile, no matter how ridiculous a plan it is, expect Democrats and the WH to shout about it as a major legislative accomplishment.  The media will repeat it, fawn over Obama yet again, and the democrats are in good shape for 2010 and 2012.  

    The democrats in congress and Obama will be fine.  People not so much.  

    The press hated Hillary, because she was a champion for the people.  Same concept applied to Gore.


    I expect them to shout about it and try to (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by ruffian on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 03:05:02 PM EST
    make it sound like a great accomplishment,  but I don't expect it to work with voters, especially if, as you say, there has been no benefit from it yet in 200 or 2012.

    I guess we'll find out.


    They might even (none / 0) (#75)
    by NYShooter on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 10:47:54 PM EST
    be planning to parachute Obama into the Coliseum, while reciting the accomplishments,  bullet point style, through a bullhorn on his way down.

    Maybe - maybe not (5.00 / 3) (#65)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 03:44:51 PM EST
    Lot of variables in play.

    Will the WH shout about it as a major legislative accomplishment? Of course they will. OTOH the Republicans will not be silent about it. As we have seen, the media is more than happy to regurgitate their talking points no matter how ridiculous.

    If it is really bad legislation, it will not take the Republicans much effort to prove to the American people that the Dems will force them to purchase junk insurance.

    Also, I think a lot depends on how much insurance premiums increase and coverage deceases between now and implementation. Heck, I could write the script for Republicans. "The Democrats spent $700 billion - $1 trillion dollars of your taxpayer dollars. Has this saved you even $1 on your health care. No today you are paying X% more than you were paying before the tax and spend liberals passed their give away program.

    Then you have cuts to the Medicare budget. The Republicans will have plenty of fodder to play with in that area.

    Some Democratic activist groups have already promised primary challenges if good reform is not passed. FDL already has a post of one such challenge to a Blue Dog. The main issue being discussed in the challenge is health insurance. If the groups follow through with more challenges, that will change some of the dynamics.  

    Finally, you have people like me who consider this a major issue and know enough about insurance to identify bad legislation when we see it.  My political activities in 2012 and 2014 will be comprised of only supporting primary challenges if the Dems sell me out to the insurance industry.  



    What if? (none / 0) (#66)
    by ghost2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 04:16:48 PM EST
    What if it's a bad legislation in terms of benefiting the wealthy and sc*&ing the poor?  What can republicans say about a plan without public option? Worse, a plan forcing a mandate on people (without a serious regulatory check) will be a windfall for the insurance companies.  Crazies would say anything, but sadly the press will annouce it a major achievement.  

    It will be like the TARP bailout.  Everyone in Washington says that it's a good idea and we all doomed without it.  The little squeak of doubt from the public will be drawn out by the megaphones at MSNBC and the like.

    Co-opting political parties by corporate interests have happened before.  What makes you think it's different now?


    Well Republicans have been (5.00 / 6) (#67)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 04:47:11 PM EST
    trying to scrap Medicare for years. Yet, all of a sudden, they are telling seniors that they are protecting them from the Dems on this issue.

    Republicans are in the cats bird seat on health insurance reform. They don't plan to vote for any legislation period. They are more than happy to let the Dems compromise and compromise and then pass bad legislation on a purely partisan basis. They will then jump in with both feet and tell the public just how bad it is.

    Do they want good legislation. Of course not. But they win if the Dems can't pass any legislation or if they pass bad legislation. Either way they have protected the insurance industry and have avenues of attack against the Dems. The only way they can lose in this situation is if the Dems passed good legislation. With the corporate Dems and Obama's help, don't see good legislation happening.  


    What you said about HRC and Gore. n/t. (none / 0) (#72)
    by sallywally on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 09:46:12 PM EST
    How to Respond (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by kaleidescope on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:06:55 PM EST
    Some of what Jane Hamsher would call the non-veal pen progressive organizations and labor should put up the money to run and finance progressive third party candidates in the districts of these Blue Dogs.  Dan Boren should be exhibit A.  Let Boren try to win without the votes of progressives.

    Politico reports (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by andgarden on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:23:39 PM EST
    that Obama will attempt to "thread the needle." in his Wednesday speech.

    Obama will try to reassure the left about his commitment to a public option, or government insurance plan. Aides said they are rethinking what he will say about this. He wants to thread the needle of voicing support for a public option, without promising to kill health reform to get it. But liberal congressional leaders were unyielding in their support for it on a conference call he held from Camp David yesterday, and he's going to meet with them at the White House early next week.

    The White House line has been: "We have been saying all along that the most important part of this debate is not the public option, but rather ensuring choice and competition. There are lots of different ways to get there." But now he's going to step on the gas a little harder. One top official gave this formulation: "He has consistently said that he thinks the public option is an important way to make sure that there is both cost and competition control. He's also said consistently that if someone can show him a better way or another way to get there, he'd be happy to look at it. But he's never committed to going with another way. He's always said he'd be happy to look at any proposal that gets to these goals, but that he thinks this is probably the best better way to do it."

    Takeaway: the pressure from the left may be working.

    Oh (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:58:47 PM EST
    geez this makes my head hurt. It's more of Obama sounding like a mealy mouthed trying to be all things to all people. You can't have it both ways is what someone should tell him. This sounds like he'll say something like he's really for a public option but will say it cant be done because of
    X and laying the blame elsewhere instead of taking responsiblity for it. This sounds like a lot of REpublicans who always blame someone else for thier problems.

    He doesn't have it both ways! (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by ghost2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:02:41 PM EST
    He speaks to fool the people, and acts to bring in an agenda to support the status quo and money men.  That's Obama in a nutshell.

    And this differs from his other (5.00 / 2) (#48)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 01:21:41 PM EST
    speeches exactly how? It has been advertised by the WH as Obama adding clarity to this issue. Seems to me he is just taking another opportunity to regurgitate the same double talk.

    When asked today, (5.00 / 3) (#76)
    by NYShooter on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 10:56:38 PM EST
    "Will Obama demand a Public Option?" Axelrod said, "President Obama is positively, absolutely, unequivocally committed to competition in the health care industry!"

    "But will he specifically demand a Public Option?"

    "I'm not going to get into the specifics..........."

    (excuse a little poetic license please, I was paraphrasing)


    Wouldn't that be great??? (none / 0) (#41)
    by sallywally on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:34:55 PM EST

    Okay (5.00 / 2) (#53)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:09:03 PM EST
    I officially declare myself a blue dog Democrat....now, Obama, protect me by giving me a REAL public option.

    I suggested yesterday (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:41:58 PM EST
    that half of us convert to GOP and the other half legal change our name to corporate names like AT&T or Cigna.

    Do you think he'd buy I'm a CEO and give me a bailout in the form of health care plan that works for America?


    What would you expect (5.00 / 3) (#70)
    by mmc9431 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 07:49:05 PM EST
    Obama's political philosphy is much closer to the Reagan Democrat's (or Blue Dogs) than the progressives.

    He earned his stripes with the progressive's solely on his anti Iraq War rhetoric during the primaries. This was done in spite of the fact that when he actually had a vote to cast, he backed every single war fundung bill Bush pushed through.

    So for people to sit around now and wonder where their candidate went astray, amazes me. He's the same politician today as he was a year ago. The real change is that people are seeing the man for who he is, rather than the man they hoped he would be.

    Obama doesn't really care what gets passed, (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by BrassTacks on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:30:37 PM EST
    As long as he looks good.  I'm really beginning to think that this man has no core values, other than him winning something, anything.  As long as he can continue to be Mr. Cool, The Winner, the nose held high in the air, speech peppered with big words, sounding ever-so erudite, that's all that matters.  It's ALL about his self image.  There's no there, there.   We've elected a very attractive shell of a man.  

    PLEASE let me be wrong, and let him come out strongly to help people AND to end the wars before we lose thousands more Americans.  PLEASE

    GWB understood base intensity (none / 0) (#3)
    by Radiowalla on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:00:23 AM EST
    when he was in the Beltway.  He understood it all too well.

    The Repub base and the Repub rich (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by sallywally on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:30:04 PM EST
    were all the same. They all understood base intensity.

    The Dems are split....because of Obama's lack of commitment to Democratic values and refusal to lead.


    "scrap reform"...no (none / 0) (#14)
    by diogenes on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:37:59 AM EST
    Examine your premises.  Many countries in the world have universal health care without a public option or single payor.  Just scrap the public option and stay far away from discussing single payor.  Win universal health care in this battle (really, the one Hillary lost in 1994).  If there are problems, the next step would be a public option in about 2020 if and when people actually see problems with the "reformed" system.  The concrete problems people have now with health care (access, lack of portability, price) have not NOW convinced people that having a public option and/or single payor is the only alternative.

    Heh (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:41:05 AM EST
    They seem pretty convinced (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:47:30 AM EST
    the public option is the best option from where I'm standing. The last poll still had a solid majority supporting a public option. It's beyond absurd to suggest tossing the electorate's opinion to placate the minority party(who are on record as saying this could be Obama's Waterloo. How about using that little soundbite DNC?)

    Support is up (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by waldenpond on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:14:38 PM EST
    Support dipped to a mere 55% at the worst part of the fight.  It's back up to 63-66%.  It increased when the pollsters gave a brief description of PO.

    That sounds about right (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:25:35 PM EST
    a little lower than the initial 77% but it's probably pretty safe to say heck will freeze over before we will get the 23% that was Bush's base and I figure there is always going to be a tiny percent of disinterested/apathetic/ confused people who don't want to pick a viewpoint for whatever reason. It's a solid majority. Why any pol. wouldn't USE that fact to get it done(particularly when he has himself on the record as saying he believes it to be the best policy option) I have no idea. Okay, I have an idea but it isn't a nice one.

    If only we had a powerful orator as President... (5.00 / 8) (#28)
    by lambert on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:03:04 PM EST
    ... who could sell real change to the American people!

    If only we had control of the House, the Presidency, and the Senate!

    Oh, wait...


    Obama's base values (none / 0) (#77)
    by NYShooter on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:10:42 PM EST
    " Who can take a sunrise
    Sprinkle it in dew
    Cover it in chocolate
    and a miracle or two?"
    The "Obama-man" can

    Who can take a rainbow
    Wrap it is a sigh
    Soak it in the sun
    and make a strawberry lemon pie?
    The "One" man can

    The "Pol-man" makes
    Everything he bakes
    Satisfying and delicious
    Talk about your childhood wishes
    You can even eat the dishes

    Who can take tomorrow
    Dip it in a dream
    Separate the sorrow
    And collect up all the cream?

    The "Con-man" can

    And he did.


    Did you all know Bush signed SCHIP bill? (none / 0) (#16)
    by kevsters on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:39:47 AM EST
    Republicans will stop at nothing to make themselves out to be the good guys in this health care debate. Even give credit to Bush for SCHIP. This video is unbelievable.


    Off topic (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:43:12 AM EST
    But funny.

    I actually think that is not smart politically for the GOP.

    They fool no one and damage their base intensity with stuff like that.


    Do they really though BTD? (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 02:16:34 PM EST
    It doesn't seem to me that the GOP base cares about facts....it seems to me to be more about a prevailing "attitude" they want their politicians to give off and not much to do with actual results.  Maybe I'm just jaded.  Maybe living in one of the reddest of red spaces is distorting the whole reality of what the GOP being hypocrites will mean in the end.

    How absurd (none / 0) (#24)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:49:52 AM EST
    considering he wanted it cut when the Dems expanded it.

    That being said The GOP Congress actually did have the majority when SCHIP was created(Hatch was a co sponsor).


    Of course (5.00 / 6) (#25)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 11:57:01 AM EST
    Hillary was co-president then (along with a guy named Bill).

    Kennedy and Hatch get all the credit for it, but it wouldn't have happened without Hillary.  Of course, she couldn't make that fact obviously known, because at that point she was so radioactive from the "Hillarycare" debacle that she was practically glowing green.  She remained stealthy on SCHIP while working behind the scenes.

    (and Kennedy admitted in 2007 that Clinton was instrumental to SCHIP, and then claimed in 2008 that she wasn't).


    Yepper (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by cawaltz on Sat Sep 05, 2009 at 12:08:27 PM EST
    From what I understand she did some behind the scenes legwork and heavy lobbying to get it done. I give her alot of credit for trying to tackle healthcare before it was popular opinion to tackle it.

    I also like how she got her dig in when they were passing the Bankruptcy bill(back when she was in Senate)about the large portion of bankruptcies that are the result of medical misfortune. And how she was able to work with Gingrich to explore health care in US(I daresay she would have been blindsided by the reasons the right would give against reform with that in mind).

    Sigh. Can't go back though and could'ves can't count. We have to the best we can to make a difference just like she has tried to do.