The End of the Public Option?
Hurray! Now all the Teabaggers will go home and tons of Republicans will get on board with health care reform, right?
President Barack Obama’s administration signaled on Sunday it is ready to abandon the idea of giving Americans the option of government-run health insurance as part of his ambitious health care proposal. Facing mounting opposition to the overhaul, administration officials left open the chance for a compromise with Republicans that would include health insurance cooperatives. Such a concession is likely to enrage his liberal supporters but could deliver Obama a much-needed win on a top domestic priority opposed by GOP lawmakers.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that government alternative to private health insurance is ”not the essential element” of the administration’s health care overhaul. The White House would be open to co-ops, she said, a sign that Democrats want a compromise so they can declare a victory on the showdown.
So Obama campaigns for 2 years with the public option as the centerpiece of his health care reform. He’s elected by the largest majority in 20 years, and the public gives him 60 Democratic seats in the Senate and 256 Democratic seats in the House. Obama then publicly lobbies for said public option after he takes office.
Then Kent Conrad, who represents like 7 people, and a handful of corrupt Blue Dogs say "No way." And Obama caves.
Oh well. At least Ezra Klein and Matt Yglesias will be happy.