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Blanche Lincoln was for the public option before she was against it

blanchlincolnpublic.gif

Blanche Lincoln gave a real ripsnorter of a speech against the public option on Saturday. "I’ve already alerted the leader, and I’m promising my colleagues, that I’m prepared to vote against moving to the next stage of consideration as long as a government-run public option is included," she said. That's all well and good, but she should have had someone update her official Web site: As Igor Volsky pointed out, as of Sunday, it still said health-care reform "should include private plans as well as a quality, affordable public plan or non-profit plan that can accomplish the same goals as a public plan."

By Ezra Klein  |  November 23, 2009; 8:22 AM ET
Categories:  Health Reform  
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Next: Is the weak public option bad politics?

Comments

The pretenses are dropping all over. Lincoln still mouths the words, but isn't bothered enough by the hypocrisy to go fudge her website. Harry Reid claims he's going to "guarantee [...] people the right to live free from the fear of illness and death," apparently with a straight face. It's one giant disgusting joke, and Klein somehow imagines he's the emcee.

Posted by: msoja | November 23, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Lincoln voted for Bush's medicare part-D, trillion dollar boondoggle without a word of regret for the added debt, and she also voted for his costly Iraq War, again without regret. And yet now she fears voting for something that will actually help millions and will save $100s billions in the long-term. Lincoln is an example of what's wrong with the Democratic party.

Posted by: Lomillialor | November 23, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

not a twinge of moral accountability.


Posted by: jkaren | November 23, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Yes, we need more leaders like are Great Barack Obama who had the courage to campaign against the individual mandate when going against Hillary Clinton in the primary and also had the courage to attack John McCain for his nefarious plan to tax employer benefits in the general election but has now jettisoned both those positions and instead adopted as his plan what he attacked his opponents for. But at least his website is up-to-date.

Posted by: sgaliger | November 23, 2009 9:26 AM | Report abuse

sgaliger

"Yes, we need more leaders like are Great Barack Obama "(sp)


yes, we certainly do.
the great barack obama did not initially promise/demand health care reform that was not possible.
the fact that he has taken this wrenching battle on at this time, is entirely courageous.
everyday, i am so thankful that barack obama is our president , when it might have been edwards, clinton or mccain.
i think barack obama is doing the best that he can under nearly impossible circumstances. he will surely be included in my thanksgiving prayers, and i am ready to work my heart out for his reelection.

Posted by: jkaren | November 23, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

@sgaliger

The Senate bill taxes cadillac plans on the insurer end. It does not end the tax exclusion for health insurance on the employee's end... which is what McCain proposed. Now, McCain's idea (which was also key to the Wyden plan) was a great idea, but it's not the same thing as the funding mechanism in the Senate bill.

Posted by: eleander | November 23, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Shhhh ... let's not tell Lincoln about that little vestige of hypocrisy on her Web site. We don't want her to yank it: it could be the leverage Harry Reid needs to wrestle her to the floor of the Senate cloak room.

Posted by: JJenkins2 | November 23, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

whoa! a politician lying, quick call Mike Wallace.

Posted by: visionbrkr | November 23, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

I was struck by how she started talking about the public option as this insignificant part of the bill that won't really do anything before she declared that she would filibuster it because it was a massive government overreach that would destroy America.

Posted by: flounder2 | November 23, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I spend a great deal of time in Mountain Home and in that part of the woods she is considered dead meat.

She should consider moving to New York and run for the Senate from that State like Hillary did!

Posted by: mwhoke | November 23, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

--"that he has taken this wrenching battle on at this time, is entirely courageous."--

What fantasies you have. There is no "battle". There is nothing courageous about abusing the power that one has acquired through posing and pontificating. Courage is saying, "No," to usurpations of power and impending loss of freedoms.

What Obama & Crew are demonstrating is something much more base.

Posted by: msoja | November 23, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

If Lincoln votes to kill health care reform, she may well face a primary challenge from the left which, though likely unsuccessful, would weaken her, and she may not receive that much help from the Dem party--certainly no labor support. If she becomes an R, she would face a primary challenge from the right, essentially alone. Her best move is to support health care reform and get much party support. Still, it is uphill for her, maybe she has a cushy lobbying job set up if she votes no and loses.

Or maybe "gov ernment run" is code for some sort of compormise for a non-gov't, non-profit to run the "public option" with a trigger, of course.

Posted by: Mimikatz | November 23, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

"Courage is saying, "No," to usurpations of power and impending loss of freedoms"

No, courage is saying Yes to those who wrongfully equate taxation issues (in a country with the lowest taxes of all western countries) to matters of usurpation and losses of freedom.

Obama could have easily abandoned the health care battle months ago and blamed it on Republicans or the economy. So yes, Obama has been very courageous.

You can't expect good government from Republicans, rather just promises or more lower taxes and more defense spending, so instead we have to leave it to Democrats to, first, provide programs such as SS and medicare, which Americans love, and secondly, to work to maintain them and keep them going, albeit through some modest and occasional adjustments which the would-be killers of medicare and SS suddenly decry as Democratic attempts to kill grandma.

Posted by: Lomillialor | November 23, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

My feeling about Lincoln is that she just doesn't know what to do. Week to week or even day to day she changes her thinking about what her strategy ought to be.

In my opinion, she hurts herself much more by appearing as an indecisive, weak hack than she would by taking a stand on the merits alone in support of her states true interests. She refuses to accept that her reelection prospects will remain tenuous regardless of her stance and continues to hedge in a hopeless pursuit for near-term popularity.

Posted by: bcbulger | November 23, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I am of the opinion that Lincoln is personally for the public option but her constituency is not. She is already worried about losing re-election and probably thinks that a vote for the public option means that she is out come 2010. And I doubt that she wants to come out in favor of the public option when it doesn't seem to have the votes to pass. Even worse than going against something that would cause her to lose election is to be in favor of such a thing when it has no chance of passing.

Posted by: khamadanchy | November 23, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

According to polling Lincoln's constituency actually favors the public option. Not only that, they need it. But they don't like Obama, and that is apparently what she bases her vote on.

Posted by: Mimikatz | November 23, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

--"No, courage is saying Yes to those who wrongfully equate taxation issues (in a country with the lowest taxes of all western countries) to matters of usurpation and losses of freedom."--

I think you have that backwards somewhere in a couple of different ways, but I get your drift, as wrong as it is. Compared to those other countries, historically, the U.S. has enjoyed lower unemployment, a higher standard of living, etc., and greater freedom. I've said before, I wouldn't want to live in the cramped spaces the typical Frenchie enjoys, or drive the teensy cars, or put up with the regular country-wide strikes. Not compared to what freedom delivers. It wasn't that long ago that the United States was a beacon to the whole world, and it wasn't because it offered nanny state health care.

--"Obama could have easily abandoned the health care battle months ago and blamed it on Republicans or the economy. So yes, Obama has been very courageous."--

LOL. No doubt he's ready to write another memoir detailing his heroism. But there's nothing really laudable about the ability to spend other people's money for them.

Posted by: msoja | November 23, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

i guess she decided arkansans don't deserve better.

Posted by: schaffermommy | November 24, 2009 2:16 AM | Report abuse

This finding merely illustrates Lincoln's gutlessness. If MoveOn.org successfully persuades Arkansas Lieutenant Governor Bill Halter to mount a MoveOn-funded primary challenge to Lincoln, I would actually consider spending two-three months in Arkansas volunteering for his campaign.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | November 24, 2009 3:05 AM | Report abuse

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