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Va Dems weigh endorsing public option

Rosalind Helderman

It's snowing already this morning in Staunton, where state Democrats are gathering for their quarterly central committee meeting, the first since gubernatorial nominee Creigh Deeds was defeated by almost 18 points by Republican Bob McDonnell Nov. 3.

So is it the winter of the donkeys' discontent?

Sort of. There is acknowledgment all the way around that the election results did not turn out the way party members had hoped, but also a fair amount of brave face discussions that suggest the party's fortunes are better than they might first appear. After all, both U.S. senators and a majority of the congressional delegation are all Democrats.

Assuming the snow doesn't keep them away, Gov. Tim Kaine, Sens. Mark Warner and Jim Webb are all scheduled to speak this morning. And word is that former gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds has said he will pay a visit as well.

Still, there is a lot of talk in Staunton about whether November's true message was that Democrats must take bolder progressive stands so voters understand what they are all about. To that end, the central committee will today consider a resolution that would declare the party's support for health care reform including a public option.

As the resolution currently reads, it includes language indicating that the party "expects" every Democratic member of the Virginia delegation to support "health care reform legislation that includes a comprehensive Public Option similar to Medicare." That could be a bit awkward for Warner and Webb, neither of whom have exactly embraced the public option.

After a vigorous debate Friday evening about whether it is appropriate for the party to instruct its elected leaders on major issues, the smaller steering committee of the party voted to endorse the resolution but recommend that the full central committee to amend it to "encourage" elected leaders rather than "expect" them to support the public option.

"As we learned from the last election, we can't just run as Republican Lite and win," said steering committee member Linda Brooks, of Newport News, encouraging the group to back the resolution. "We want health care reform. They're watering it down. If we don't act like Democrats, we're going to lose. We'll keep losing.

By Rosalind Helderman  |  December 5, 2009; 8:38 AM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009 , James Webb , Mark Warner , Rosalind Helderman  
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Next: Deeds thanks Dems, exhorts party to keep fighting


HAHAHAHA . . . "There is acknowledgment all the way around that the election results did not turn out the way party members had hoped . . ."

Hey . . . I say let them switch from a Donkey to a Bullmoose . . . WeThePeopleofVirginia will Creigh Deeds them too.

Posted by: WeThePeopleofVirginia | December 5, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

If Dems are weighing endorsement of the public option . . . then November 2010 the public option will be to vote them out.

Here are three things they should be discussing . . . JOBS . . . MORE JOBS . . . and EVEN MORE JOBS.

Posted by: WeThePeopleofVirginia | December 5, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

"As we learned from the last election, we can't just run as Republican Lite and win,"

It's obvious from that quote that they learned SQUAT from the last election. The further they pull to the left, the harder Virginian's pull to the right.

It will be interesting to see if they learn anything from their upcoming 2010 defeats.

Posted by: JackESpratt | December 5, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Jobs. you thing your bozo right wing wacko will bring jobs?
You guys are so out of right wing palin land you are beyond help.
Go have some tea.

Posted by: lgb2931 | December 6, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

The fact remains that big insurance by refusing care to patients and reimbursement to doctors over typos has ticked everyone off. They have a monopoly over the whole process and a well financed lobby team (including Lieberman's wife) and representatives on both sides of the isle.

A friend of mine recently laid off just he and his spouse is paying $2,500.00 dollars a month for his COBRA. Health insurance costs more than his mortgage. Anyone taking up the insurance industry's cause doesn't know what they are talking about.

If you think the insurance companies are going to voluntarily lower their cost while having a monopoly over the process – you are being disingenuous …Over 60% of all US bankruptcies are attributable to medical problems. Most victims are middle class, well educated and have health insurance - (The American Journal of Medicine)

The insurance companies and their representatives in Congress would love to perpetuate a business model that is crippling our overall economy – a bunch of great Americans aren’t they?

90% of the wealth concentrated in 1% of the population is no way to run a country but a heck of a way to establish a royalty ruling class. Yacht sales can not sustain 350 million people. I'm for the public option, competition and a level playing field or break up the big insurers like we did AT&T.

A slavish focus on profit margin might be good for the individual or a business, but it is one helluva lousy way to "govern" a Country. The GOP being a wholly owned subsidiary of Corporate America has a hard time with that concept.

Paul Burke
Author-Journey Home

Posted by: JourneyHomeBurke | December 7, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

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