It’s Not Governing from the Center Just Because You Talk Out of Both Sides of Your Mouth
So, the Obama administration got a wake-up call suddenly concerned about the health care reform drubbing it was taking in the progressive blogiverse, and held a conference call to try to stop the bleeding:
White House senior advisor David Axelrod and health care adviser Nancy-Ann DeParle held a conference call Thursday night with progressive bloggers — in what Axelrod described as a bid to clear the air after several tense days.
… In response to one blogger who chided the White House for failing to fight for the public option while taking “potshots” at the liberal activists, DeParle said: “The president is fighting for this. … You have no idea how many hours, how many hundreds of hours he has spent, how many phone calls he has made, how many meetings he has had. … We need your help and we don’t mean to be chiding you. But please appreciate how hard this is.”
… According to an account on DailyKos, DeParle said the provisions in the Senate bill need to be improved and moved closer to what the House bill includes, particularly on affordability.
Awww, I feel all warm and fuzzy now. They like us, they really like us after all! Except someone had to go and step on the (revised) message right away (via the Wall Street Journal):
Turn off MSNBC. Tune out Howard Dean and Keith Olbermann. The White House has its liberal wing in hand on health care, says White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel….
… Emanuel pointed to a New York Times column by economist Paul Krugman and another coming from National Journal writer Ronald Brownstein pressing for passage of the Senate health bill. “What you’re seeing is the progressive backlash against the progressive backlash,” he said.
Nice going, Rahm. Whatever small amount of goodwill the Axelrod-DeParle call created, you just undid it. The boss must sure be glad he has you as his political mastermind.