I’m honestly hard pressed to think of anyone who I can tolerate less than Lanny Davis, who I think really embodies everything wrong about the Democratic party and politics in general, but contained in this ridiculous piece blaming the left for the Coakley defeat is this:
The Democrats have a simple message on health care that has still not really gotten through: If our bill passes, you never have to worry about getting, or losing, health insurance for the rest of your life. How is it that so few people have heard that message?
Putting aside the fact that according to what I have read, the left came out to vote, he is right about the messaging. We hear all sorts of talk about procedural hoops to get to HCR, we hear about all sorts of nonsense about the bully pulpit, we hear all sorts- well, I could go on forever. The simple fact of the matter Democrats have talked about the need for health care reform for decades, and then, when it came time to sell it, they fell flat on their faces.
Never having to worry about losing your health insurance again is such an appealing proposition. I would gladly pay several thousand dollars more a year in taxes for this kind of security. Banning pre-existing conditions is huge. But somehow or another it all got lost in the chants of death panels and socialism. For that, I think you can blame the Democrats from the top down. It is a potent message, and it just never was passed on to the public in a meaningful way.
One other thing- I know I am a cantankerous prick who can not help himself from goading progressives, but to blame HCR failure on the progressive left is just flat out absurd. If HCR dies, the blame lies solely on the moderates and the Republicans and the Obama administration. The Republicans voted down the line against any and all reform, the centrists never really wanted it or added so many poison pills that it became impossible to move on the bill. And even with all the legislative insults to progressive sensibilities and the removal of so many provisions they wanted, you know who was still willing to suck it up and vote for reform- the progressive wings of the House and Senate.
The reason that online progressives have driven me insane is that they seem immune to the political realities- Joe Lieberman is a sanctimonious prick who is going to vote against anything he and Marshall Wittmann think will piss off the Jane Hamshers of the left. He as much as admitted that with his Medicare buy-in reversal. Evan Bayh is a posturing fool who is only where he is because of his gene pool, and he will do or say whatever he can to prove how very moderate and reasonable and sensible he is and get himself back on Imus. And on and on with them through Lincoln and Nelson and the whole crowd. Screaming about the bully pulpit or pushing to have Rahm fired and then investigated or attacking Democrats with right-wing talking points was never going to change those realities. The moderates and Republicans never really wanted a bill, and the liberals and progressives are without leverage. And then you have that asshole Stupak and his band of brothers at the Family.
The whole thing is just frustrating, and now it appears the Dems are going to run away from it.