By Ben Cohen
Joe Conason skewers the real players responsible for blocking substantive health care reform:
Nearly every poll now shows the American
people demanding change in the health care system, with majorities
favoring universal coverage and, in many surveys, a government plan
that competes with private insurance. But powerful Democratic
politicians, especially in the Senate, are pretending not to hear. They
adopt all sorts of positions, from bluntly opposing any substantive
change this year to promoting bogus alternatives. They claim to be
trying to help Obama gather the votes he will need, or to assist him in
attracting Republican votes. They insist that the country can’t afford
universal care, or that the public option won’t pass (before debate has
Indeed, many of the most intransigent
Democrats don’t bother to make actual arguments to support their
position. Nor do they seem to worry that Democratic voters and the
party’s main constituencies overwhelmingly support the public option
and universal coverage.
If health care reform fails, it won’t be because of the Republicans. They aren’t powerful enough to block Obama’s proposals, and are consigned to screeching from the aisles. The behavior of certain Democrats proves the point that both parties have been bought by the insurance industry (amongst others), and have one political objective: To represent the interests of the companies who have paid for their careers.
The list of top Democrats opposed to reform:
Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
Senator Tom Carper (D-DE)
Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR)
Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL)
Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA)
Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC)
Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND)
Senator Max Baucus (D-MT)
If it fails, we’ll know exactly who to blame.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.