(Title intended to ironically tweak wingnuts. Fun!)

So, while digesting my lunch I’ve had some time to digest last night’s historic vote. I’ve come to the conclusion that, like Eric, I think this was a GOP Waterloo. In fact, while some credit goes to people like Pelosi (and Obama for risking political capital by letting the process play itself out in Congress), a large amount of credit for the passage of this bill goes to Republicans; specifically to the “Party of No” strategy.

There were many points in this process where Democrats would have certainly agreed to a much less ambitious bill, if they thought it more likely to pass. However, the GOP had laid all of their cards on the table – there would be no negotiating with grandma-killers on the left (they really painted themselves into a corner with their base on that one), and they would take no prisoners. So, as Matthew Yglesias put it – “no one surrendered”. It was quite clear that any bill would have been just as difficult to pass, even one substantially less ambitious than the less-than-perfect bill we got. So Democrats soldiered on.

The GOP quite literally snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

And so now, the talk is about repeal. Well, if the GOP wins every single Senate seat up this year, they would still be 8 votes shy of enough to override a veto. And while I’m fairly certain “repeal health care” will be a political loser this fall, it definitely will be a political loser in 2012, when they next have an opportunity to elect the President they would need to repeal this. By then, my guess is that the program will be viewed as such a smashing success by The People that Obama’s re-election will be virtually guaranteed.

No, the health care horse is out of the barn. The high-pressure “Party of No” strategy very nearly worked, but in the end it was a catastrophic failure for the GOP. In reality, future conservatives will campaign on reforming the program, not repealing, just like the conservative parties do in every other country in the industrialized world with national health care programs. Because they work, and because they are popular. Campaigning on repealing is political seppuku, and it won’t be very long before that is also the case here.

And then we can work on fixing the parts of the program that are broken. It is my hope that moderate Dems see how progressive legislation leads to ballot box success and grow a pair.

The fact of the matter is that, despite it’s flaws, this bill has given a palpable sense of optimism to the liberal base. We will be energized this fall, determined to forge a stronger legislative base for additional reforms.

Thank you, GOP. I think your strategy proved to the Dems and their supporters that they, in fact, can demonstrate the capacity for bravery. ?Viva la Revolucion!

(Yes, I suppose I am mixing my metaphors. No, I don’t care. I’m in too good a mood.)

  • elrayb

    If that was a Republican office and the roles were reversed the place would have been destroyed because that's all you deadbeats know how to do is trash this country. Progressives= Communists and everyone knows it now.

    It must be a release to be able to come out of the closet at long last. Your feelings had to be hurt because homosexuals have been able to be out of the closet for sometime now.
    At least Obama can't blame Bush anymore… or will he thank Bush for getting this passed? Is it now all of a sudden his deal?
    I hope this works a little better than that amazingly powerful 787 billion dollar “slush” I mean stimulus he just had to get passed to save us from an economic depression. Where is my Obama money? Where is that stash?
    Oh yeah get ready for the high speed railroad to take you back and forth to the casinos.
    Boy I wish I was in the union so I could get everything for free. I actually wish that Obama was as concerned about creating jobs as he was at eliminating them. I know that's asking a lot because if it takes him a year to pass each of his “Mandates” we all will be collecting unemployment.

    I know he is busy sucking up to Iran and planning amnesty for all of the illegal new Democrat Party voters he wants to let come across the border and compete for those cushy government union jobs. I mean Obama can't prove he is a citizen and he made it all the way to President so the sky is the limit for anyone else who is here illegally.
    That's great now we have a car company, a bunch of banks, a whole lot of foreclosed houses and coming soon 1300 insurance companies closing down when you get your single-payer. WOW! I bet the boys over in Afghanistan are really glad they are risking their lives so they can be part of the first communist dictatorship who hates the military.

    Thanks for the communist/Progressive test drive but I don't think we will be buying.

    I hope I didn't ruin your mood, don't worry the next 8 months will fly by and Nov will be here before you know it.

  • mvirenicus

    as much as i hate to admit it, the dems have put themselves in good stead for november and beyond. i'll still be voting green or socialist in every non-consequential race this next cycle.

  • You wouldn't happen to be a member of the notorious Kansas City Dorks would you?

  • I hope I didn't ruin your mood, don't worry the next 8 months will fly by and Nov will be here before you know it.

    Ruin my mood? You improved it! Just more evidence that you guys have no idea what just happened. And until you figure it out, you've got no chance at getting anywhere.

    I think we might be looking at the GOP death throes, hopefully to be followed by another 40 years in the wilderness for the hard right. You guys managed to do a lot of damage in the last 30 years, but I think your Reign of Terror might be coming to an end.

  • chrisperrbluelake

    Those who believe that health care is a privilege based solely on ability to pay have vanquished any attempt at universal health care for the foreseeable future and the universal wrecking machine of the private health insurance industry is even more entrenched having been handed over 30 million more people to feast upon who will be forced to purchase their bloated and defective product.

    Don?t just tell the people that you?re going to call this health care reform, when you?re giving insurance companies an even more powerful monopoly status in our economy. This does not meet my definition of being the most significant piece of social legislation since the 1964 Civil Rights Act that the Obama administration has been claiming.

    This bill is not about fiscal responsibility or the common good. The bill is about increasing corporate profit at taxpayer expense. It is the health care industry?s version of the Wall Street bailout. It lavishes hundreds of billions in government subsidies on insurance and drug companies. The some 3,000 health care lobbyists in Washington, whose dirty little hands are all over the bill, have once more betrayed the American people for money. The bill is another example of why change will never come from within the Democratic Party. The party is owned and managed by corporations, just the same as Republicans

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