Rewarding Good Behavior
We’ve been working since June 23 to get progressive members of the House to draw a line in the sand on health care: no public option, no health care bill.
Yesterday 60 members did just that when they sent a letter to Kathleen Sebelius saying they would stick together through conference, all the way to the bitter end, to oppose any bill that does not have a public plan.
Marc Ambinder is right:
The basic calculus here: the White House thinks that House Democrats won’t be able to say "no" to a reform bill in the end, even without a public plan, and is going to try other inducements — money for favorite programs, promises down the road, maybe even some threats and pressure — to keep them aboard.
The battle is not won, not by a long shot. Our Act Blue donation page includes the 60 members who signed the letter, plus five more that our whip count effort have secured promises from that they will not vote for any bill that does not have a robust public plan. Thereisnospoon and Hekebolos over at Daily Kos are also on board.
Democracy for America is letting these members know that they have the support of their constituents, and Howard Dean — well, he’s been on fire. Eat it, Rahm.
Meanwhile, HCAN is going to spend $650,000 — attacking Republicans. If grass roots efforts weren’t underway to fight the real battle here, and we had to rely on the big moneyed interests, the public plan would have been lost a long time ago.