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Dean: "Sanders has got the right idea, You might as well kill this thing"

connecticut man1's picture

Gov. Howard Dean on MSNBC talks about the BIG *IF*:

"The biggest time bomb in the short run is the Public Option. Without a Public option, basically the activists of the Democratic party sit on their hands in 2010. Obama is not on the ballot. There's no reason to go out and vote for a Democratic Congressman or give them any money if they can't pass a healthcare bill that's worth anything. And that's a huge problem for the Democrats if its not in there and so it looks like some of the, a few of the folks aren't going to let it in there. [snip] [The Public Option] has been watered down, it's about as as watered down as it can get and still be a real bill. So there's not a lot left in this bill. For example, there's really no insurance reform in this bill. [snip] I think Sanders has got the right idea. You might as well kill this thing because the people are going to be furious if it passes if it doesn't have a Public Option."

Also, over at HuffPo and via TomP at dKos, Howard Dean makes a few points that some who are willing to pass a crappy bill are ignoring:

Dean continues:

"So this is really tough. I didn't anticipate being in this position. I thought it would pass. Maybe Harry has some magic up his sleeve. But I don't see how he gets those four votes [Sens. Joseph Lieberman (Conn.), Mary Landrieu (La.), Blanche Lincoln (Ark.) and Ben Nelson (Neb.)] without compromising the bill," Dean concluded.

Huffington Post

So we can kiss the already weakened public option good-bye. It's going to be a mediocre or shitty bill, but probably an improvement to what we have now. That's my view, not necessarily Gov. Dean's view.

But Gov. Dean does identify the real future:

"If you have members refusing to vote for Reid on procedural issues you will have a revolt in the party," Dean said. "What is the point of having a 60-vote margin? This is going to be death for the [Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee] and the [Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee]. Why would anyone donate to them if they're supporting candidates who defeat the Democratic agenda?"

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connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

of whatever they talking about. Even the House version would be little to work with if there is no real public option. Take the best stuff in both the House and Senate versions and there is something to work with to move towards "better". Not best, not great, just a little better.

And as Dean notes: That still leaves people waiting years for help.


If there is one good sign? They are already talking about going around Lieberman to get Snowe or Collins which, IMHO, is just a way of telling Lieberman that they aren't going to play ball with his stupid and will probably go the route of reconciliation to get what they can passed and blame him for having to do that. 'Cause they can't be frickin serious about trying to get trigger Snowe and No PO Collins to vote for anything.

Submitted by lambert on

[a|the] [strong|robust]? public [health insurance]? [option|plan].

Dean's a little behind. And he should never have claimed that public option was like Medicare to begin with; that wasn't accurate, and trashed his credibility among anybody who's been following this.

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

I don't think he is trying to sell "Medicare" as the public option. He is pretty clear about what the PO is and what he thinks it should be this time around.

All of this could have been avoided if every Dem had just started their "public option" as a real "Medicare" option from the get go.

The right wing GOP and Dems would be viewed as even more extreme for opposing it and settling on "Medicare +5" as a more open and available public option to anyone would have been an easy compromise to push the idiot side into.

And the people would have been excited about it, from top to bottom, I am guessing. Probably even most of the Single Payer supporters.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

I'd be much more willing to buy this, All of this could have been avoided if every Dem had just started their "public option" as a real "Medicare" option from the get go., if it weren't so painfully obvious that this whole charade was very much planned. Obama ran Harry and Louise ads during the fucking primary and we didn't hear much of a peep from any Democrats. On the contrary, more and more Dem officials jumped to endorse him. That should tell us something obvious. Dems know and knew exactly what they are doing and are getting exactly what they want. If they wanted something better, they could get it: they have the numbers and have a president who until recently could kill puppies on national TV to thunderous applause. We are getting what we are getting because that's what the Dems wanted to force upon us.

DWCG's picture
Submitted by DWCG on

Just let people/businesses buy into Medicare. Screw the "Exchanges" "public option" simple message:

"If you're a fricking idiot and like your private health insurance you can keep it, but if you're a sane person/business owner we're going to let you buy into Medicare."

That's much more difficult to demonize than either single-payer or Obamacare.

(And incidentally, only allowing the 55-65 buy-in will likely increase cost of the program. You can't just make it accessible to those who are sick/high risk you have to make it accessible to the healthy and young.)

Submitted by hipparchia on

the exchanges aren't being set up to give people a choice, they're being set up to save the insurance industry. allowing people to buy into medicare would mean allowing people to kill of an industry they hate.

Submitted by lambert on

That would be great!

Of course, the boards are also going to cut Medicare in the name of "entitlement reform," but it's certainly better than junk insurance.

connecticut man1's picture
Submitted by connecticut man1 on

Dean wants people from 55 to be able to buy into Medicare (with the stipulation of "+ 5") as soon as a bill is passed. That is not under consideration at all, but like he says, it gives them something to show the people that is happening right now for the next round of elections.

In regard to the reality healthcare reform? That probably helps the largest segment of the population with serious health issues. I am guessing there but the 55 and older people are the more likely to be having expensive health issues.

In regard to the politics of it? That is prime baby boomer voting ages there and the starting age where Democratic party and Obama voter support dropped off in the last election. Pandering to them in a way that will improve Medicare's "efficiency/costs/etc." while saving them money for themselves might change that.

gqmartinez's picture
Submitted by gqmartinez on

You know, actively trying to harm us all by lying?

In my youthful 20 something days, I initially jumped on the Dean bandwagon. I went to several Dean speaking events and one thing I noticed was that Dean was constantly shifting his rhetoric. One day he would be praising the Clintons, the next time he'd attack them viciously, often for the same things he applauded them for previously. Eventually, I stopped trusting him and the suspicion proved warranted after the RBC and primary fraud.

When I view Dean through what I've observed in the past, I can't help feeling that this is just a play for this duplicitous Villager to have the best of both worlds. He pushed and prodded for the faux "Public Option", engaging in the bait N switch. *NOW*, he's against it, after its passage is almost assured. He helped force this monstrosity on us and is now saying its bad so he can help "save" us from what he did to us. That's exactly how the revolving door works in the Village. Dems have to actively prevent good from happening so that they can "save" us from the evil GOP. It's a well orchestrated sham and I have a hard time taking Dean seriously now, after what he's recently done vis a vis the bait and switch. But the online left will sop it up like juicy Thanksgiving turkey smothered in gravy*.

* I'm a vegetarian so I have to assume that most meat eaters find that appealing.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

we can't get anything done as long as special interests can buy off a handful of Senators and block progress. The public interest is a trifle more important than the traditions of the Senate.

oh, and Barbara Boxer for Senate.

jumpjet's picture
Submitted by jumpjet on

Because in that case I agree. Boxer is a good liberal in general, and she's a fantastic mover and shaker. Just recently she used an obscure wrinkle of Senate procedure to bypass all the conservatives on her Environment and Public Works Committee and bring her climate and energy bill to the floor of the Senate.

Boxer knows how to get shit done, and she wants to get the right shit done. A shame she's not next in line after Reid goes down.

DWCG's picture
Submitted by DWCG on

Don't think we should allow radical judges to sit on the bench and rule because a party has a 1-seat majority. We have similarly high thresholds for treaties.

But everything else should be majority-rule. And it's not about the special interest per-se (that can't be stopped without real campaign finance reform). It's about democratic and functional governance.