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Grassley Wants Political Cover, But Americans Want Health Care

Grassley & BaucusEJ Dionne:

Max Baucus, the Democratic chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has done everything short of making ethanol a reimbursable prescription drug to win the heart of his good Republican friend from Iowa, Chuck Grassley.

I’m told that Grassley, under immense pressure from Republican colleagues not to deal at all, has informed Baucus that he cannot sign on to a bill if it is supported by only one other Republican, the sensible Olympia Snowe of Maine. Grassley needs more cover from more conservative colleagues.

I understand the value of optics, and telling the GOP to publicly get stuffed is probably not the best idea. But bending over backwards to please people who are never going to be pleased, compromising the health care plan just so you can score a public relations victory, is bad policy and bad politics.

There was no loud cheering by anybody but members of Congress when ACES passed. The idea that we can pass something that is nothing more than an insurance industry bailout, and everyone will applaud because "something" was done, is a pretty remote fantasy.

The ultimate test is going to be the functionality of an overhauled health care system. If the GOP is marginally less unhappy and the whole thing sucks, I don’t know how that scores as a "victory."

Bottom line — if the "centrist" inertia is going to be overcome, it’s going to happen because the public demands it.

Use Our Citizen Whip Count Tool To Demand a Public Option

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Grassley Wants Political Cover, But Americans Want Health Care

EJ Dionne:

Max Baucus, the Democratic chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has done everything short of making ethanol a reimbursable prescription drug to win the heart of his good Republican friend from Iowa, Chuck Grassley.

I’m told that Grassley, under immense pressure from Republican colleagues not to deal at all, has informed Baucus that he cannot sign on to a bill if it is supported by only one other Republican, the sensible Olympia Snowe of Maine. Grassley needs more cover from more conservative colleagues.

I’m told that Grassley, under immense pressure from Republican colleagues not to deal at all, has informed Baucus that he cannot sign on to a bill if it is supported by only one other Republican, the sensible Olympia Snowe of Maine. Grassley needs more cover from more conservative colleagues. 

I understand the value of optics, and telling the GOP to publicly get stuffed is probably not the best  idea.  But bending over backwards to please people who are never going to be pleased, compromising the health care plan just so you can score a public relations victory, is bad policy and bad politics.

There was no loud cheering by anybody but members of Congress when ACES passed. The idea that we can pass something that is nothing more than an insurance industry bailout, and everyone will applaud because "something" was done, is a pretty remote fantasy.

The ultimate test is going to be the functionality of an overhauled health care system.  If the GOP is marginally less unhappy and the whole thing sucks, I don’t know how that scores as a "victory."

Bottom line — if the "centrist" inertia is going to be overcome, it’s going to happen because the public demands it.

Use Our Citizen Whip Count Tool  To Demand a Public Option

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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