Monday, January 18, 2010

Let the Panic Begin.

Andrew Sullivan of the Daily Dish, has officially given up all hope, for a Coakley win and a Health Care Reform Bill in his lifetime.

Democrats can stop hoping at this point.

I can see no alternative scenario but a huge - staggeringly huge - victory for the FNC/RNC machine tomorrow. They crafted a strategy of total oppositionism to anything Obama proposed a year ago. Remember they gave him zero votes on even the stimulus in his first weeks. They saw health insurance reform as Obama's Waterloo, and, thanks in part to the dithering Democrats, they beat him on that hill. They have successfully channeled all the rage at the massive debt and recession the president inherited on Obama after just one year. If they can do that already, against the massive evidence against them, they have the power to wield populism to destroy any attempt by government to address any actual problems.

This is a nihilist moment, built from a nihilist strategy in order to regain power ... to do nothing but wage war against enemies at home and abroad.

What comes next will be a real test for Obama. I suspect serious health insurance reform is over for yet another generation.

Jonathan Chait tries to talk Andrew off the ledge, about Health Reform. However, it seems the election is all but over in the eyes of these journalists.

Andrew is right only if the Democrats start thinking like him. There are perfectly viable ways to pass a major health care reform without taking another vote in the Senate. The easiest is just to have the House pass the Senate bill, and promise to use a reconciliation bill, which requires just a majority vote, to smooth out any changes. It's very, very doable. It's also in the interest of the Democrats in Congress. They already cast a vote, might as well reap the benefit of having an accomplishment.

The only question is whether they can keep their heads.

If in fact, the Democratic Party has lost the special election, in Massachusetts no less, a state that has a 3-1 democratic majority.

Not to mention losing the seat of Ted Kennedy, who had a lifetime goal of passing health care reform in the United States.

If this is what happens on Tuesday night, confirming the Democrats utter impotence, and yet another management blunder, what should be done about health care?

In my opinion, the failure to pass a health care bill, will impugn the administrations ability to get anything done, in terms of cap and trade, debt reduction, and banking regulation. To use a poker term the administration has gone "all in" in terms of health care, and they must manipulate the game so it gets signed, know matter if Coakley wins or losses tomorrow.

With that being said the Obama administration has not shown the ability to make this happen, and if I was making odds, 50-50 would be generous with a Coakley loss. But what do I know, I change diapers for a living.

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