My RedState post on Trump and the public option.

Found here. Short version: dude’s for it, man.  It’s pretty clear that Donald Trump supports a public option, because as recently as last September he was describing either that, or something like a federal Medicaid expansion, as being part of his plan.  I dunno why this hasn’t been mentioned more.

James Clyburn (D, SC-06) dangles potential public option carrot.

(Via AoSHQ) Rep. James Clyburn went out there today to promise that, if only Democratic voters come out and keep their feckless legislators in control of Congress, said feckless legislators will maybe get a public option going next year. Although one suspects that if Democratic voters just elect Clyburn he’ll hold up under the strain somehow.

“Reelect me, keep Democrats on the field. And when we come back next year, maybe we will get to the public option,” Majority Whip James Clyburn (S.C.) said during an appearance on the Tom Joyner Morning Show.

Maybe.” Some thoughts on this: Continue reading James Clyburn (D, SC-06) dangles potential public option carrot.

Rep. Clyburn abandons public option on behalf of Democratic party.

Here we go.

The House’s third-ranking Democrat said Sunday that he can support a healthcare reform bill without a public option.

House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) — a proponent of a government-run public plan — said that he could back the bill as long as it creates more choice and competition in the insurance industry and reduces costs. “It’s of no consequence” whether it’s done via the public option or not.

(H/T: Hot Air Headlines) Translation: House Democrats are going to abandon the public option. Ignore the nonsense about more choice and reduced costs: that’s for the rubes and the netroots. They went with the #3 House Democrat to make the announcement because both Pelosi and Hoyer want to appear to be reluctantly going along with this, instead of enthusiastically: if the endgame ends up reminding you of their FISA ‘capitulation,’ well, there’s a reason for that.  Anyway, this is probably back on track for being settled by the State of the Union address.  In fact, they’re probably right now working out how many liberal House members can vote ‘no’ on the bill and still get it to pass.

I’d be offended at the Democratic leadership’s upcoming betrayal of their own (loudly stated) principles, if only I believed that they had them in the first place.  As I didn’t and don’t, the best that I can muster is a slightly cynical moue of distaste.  And that’s only because I’ve never gotten to use the word ‘moue’ in a post before.

Moe Lane

PS: The final language on federal funding on abortion will be at whatever point between Stupak’s and the Senate’s version that will cause the NRLC to stop threatening to score the final vote.  If that call hasn’t been made yet, it will be.

Crossposted to RedState.

Democrats contemplating just passing the Senate HCR bill?

(H/T Instapundit) While I see Mickey Kaus’ point in the abstract:

People in the know in Washington appear to have already considered and dismissed the “ping pong” option–the possibility that if the Senate finally passes a compromise health care bill, Pelosi’s House might simply vote “yes” on the exact same bill, avoiding the need for a “conference” to reconcile the House and Senate versions and instead sending the bill directly to the President for his signature. But from outside Washington, out here in the real America, this “ratification” route still looks awfully appealing–especially this week.

…there are pragmatic problems to consider: the House health care rationing bill passed with only two votes to spare, and only because of the Stupak amendment.  The Senate version currently lacks similar language, and it will probably not even get to a vote unless ‘public option’ is removed.  Put another way: for this gambit to work it’ll require no public option and hefty rules against federal funding of abortion.  Put yet another way: this gambit doesn’t just metaphorically gut-shoot progressives.  It requires that progressives metaphorically gut-shoot themselves as part of the process.

I’m not saying that they won’t do it.  Progressive Democratic legislators are quite good at emulating jellyfish.  But this would be above and beyond the usual spinelessness.

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.

Senate Majority Leader Reid’s successful public option rollout.

No, seriously: successful.  You see, by Mary Katharine Ham’s count Reid only explicitly lost Senators Lieberman and Lincoln from his own caucus, and Senators Collins & Snowe from ours for his clumsy and ill-planned advocacy of a government ‘public’ option in the Senate health care rationing bill.  It was not unreasonable to expect that Reid would not only alienate those four, but Senators Ben Nelson and Landrieu as well; so if one looks at this result and squints it sort of looks like a win for the Senate Majority Leader.  If one grades on the curve, that is.

Then again, while the question is not yet moot, there’s a certain amount of mootness creeping in right now…

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.

‘Rod Blagojevich, THOU ART AVENGED!’

Have I used that one before?

Doesn’t matter if I had: it’s worth repeating. Via @MelissaTweets comes the wonderful news that Roland Burris is giving this ‘run for election’ thing serious consideration.  Yes, I know that the conventional wisdom is that he won’t, but Roland Burris is neither conventional, nor particularly wise – and he’s not actually ruling out a run. Admittedly, right now his major problem is that he’d need to find some surefire and very public way to appeal to the liberal faction of the Democratic party.  But how to do that?

…Sen. Roland Burris just put out a statement saying he won’t vote for a bill that doesn’t include a public option, which is not supported by many of his moderate Democratic Senate colleagues.

Yeah. Yeah, that’ll do it.

Moe Lane

PS: Just remember: if he does run, and you’re a Democrat who votes against him in the primary, it’s because you’re a racist. Just ask Jimmy Carter.

Crossposted to RedState.

Sen. Susan Collins (R, ME) rejects trigger for ‘public option.’

(via @seanhackbarth) For the very commonsense reason that you can’t trust the people who would be pulling the trigger. No, really: that’s what she said.

A moderate Republican who has previously broken with her party to support President Obama’s $787 billion stimulus bill said Sunday that she does not support the idea of using a so called “trigger” on the public health insurance option as part of health care reform legislation.

Asked on CNN’s State of the Union if the use of the trigger would make inclusion of the public option more acceptable, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, unequivocally replied “no.”

“The problem with trigger is it just delays the public option,” Collins told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King, “because the people who are going to be making the determination about whether the market is competitive enough, want the public option.”

Note that this doesn’t mean that Sen. Olympia Snowe is going to take the same position (although it doesn’t mean that she’ll be taking a different one, either); but Sen. Collins’ position on this does make it clear that the ‘public trigger’ scenario for a government option in health care is not actually bipartisan. Please also note that Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D, NH) apparently needed only eight months as a Senator to forget how to answer straightforward questions in a straightforward manner:

New Hampshire Democrat Sen. Jeanne Shaheen refused to answer directly when asked whether Collins’ position indicated that President Obama should either not fight for inclusion of the public option in the final bill or, alternatively, pursue a legislative strategy that relied solely on Democratic votes for health care reform.

Continue reading Sen. Susan Collins (R, ME) rejects trigger for ‘public option.’

Bill Bradley wants to trade tort reform for the public option.

Good luck with that.

The best that I can say about the former Senator’s plan is that he means well:

Whenever Congress undertakes large-scale reform, there are times when disaster appears certain — only to be averted at the last minute by the good sense of its sometimes unfairly maligned members. What now appears in Washington as a special-interest scrum could well become a triumph for the general interest. But for that to happen, the two parties must strike a grand bargain on universal coverage and malpractice tort reform.

It’s also unfortunately the worst that I can say, too. Democrats in Congress had their opportunity to seek a bargain, and they deliberately spurned it. Since then, they have libeled, slandered, lied, and schemed against not only Republican legislators (which is part of the game), but the American people (which is not). And now they are poised to try to pervert the rules of the Senate itself in order to pass corrupt legislation that ignores the concerns of… pretty much everybody in the country who isn’t a major contributor for the Democratic party, really.

So no deal.  If this distresses former Senator Bradley, then he should have spoken up before this: say, at the beginning, when Madame Speaker and Reid decided to freeze out the GOP.  But it’s so easy to go along to get along when things are coming along well for your party…

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.

Steny Hoyer goes off-message on health care rationing.

Assuming that there’s any sort of on-message at this point. Via Hot Air, here’s the latest cloud of ink from a Democrat perhaps worried about the way things are going:

Hoyer (D-Md.) emphasized his support for a public option in a teleconference call with reporters, but also said he wants to ensure Congress sends a bill to the president.

“I’m for a public option, but I’m also for passing a bill,” he said. Democrats believe the public option is necessary, useful and important, he added, “be we’ll have to see.”

No doubt we’ll soon enough get a clarification of the explanation of the correction of the restatement of whatever the heck it is that the Democrats want to do this week. Although what are progressives going to do with Steny, anyway? Give money to Charles Lollar?

Well, they should. But that’s just the Marylander Republican talking.

Moe Lane

PS: In other words, it is not yet time for me to publicly join in the Crowder Victory Dance.  And I am sure that the world finds this delay much to its liking.

That being said, drop some money in the tip jar and I’ll think about doing it and taping the results.

Heck, drop some money in the tip jar with the message “Don’t. Please, Moe: DON’T!” and I’ll think about not. I’ll be happy to start a bidding war; it’s all going to go towards assemblingmy blogging wish list, anyway.

Crossposted to RedState.

Now it’s the *administration* who’s using the term ‘Waterloo.’

Non-ironically, to boot.

But at a time when the president had hoped to be selling middle-class voters on how insurance reforms would benefit them, the White House instead finds itself mired in a Democratic Party feud over an issue it never intended to spotlight.

I don’t understand why the left of the left has decided that this is their Waterloo,” said a senior White House adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “We’ve gotten to this point where health care on the left is determined by the breadth of the public option. I don’t understand how that has become the measure of whether what we achieve is health-care reform.”

Bolding mine, and via Patterico’s Pontifications, who is laughing as hard over this as I am. Please also note that being for a public option is now being seen as being a non-mainstream position by the White House culture itself: the tone-deafness exhibited there is staggering, particularly since it was guaranteed that the WaPo would run with that.  Which suggests one of two alternatives: either the White House is going to drop the public option, or the White House has precisely zero message discipline.

Or both, I suppose.

Moe Lane

Crossposted to RedState.