White House Tells Harry Reid To Cut Deal With Joe Lieberman (UPDATED)
If Harry Reid makes a deal with Joe Lieberman on the health care bill, it would mean no expansion of Medicare benefits. Reid risks losing progressives if he gives Lieberman what he wants. The problem is the ever-changing positions of Lieberman.
Democrats are frustrated because they believe Lieberman keeps moving the goal posts. He supported the Medicare buy in the 2000 presidential campaign, and in September reiterated support for the plan in an interview with the Connecticut Post.
Lieberman has denied giving his approval of the Medicare buy-in during the negotiations last week among a group of 10 moderate and liberal senators.
Jane Hamsher at FireDogLake has some tough words for Reid:
Sorry, Harry Reid, you’re the one that takes the hit for this. If you let Lieberman lead you and the country around by the nose, it doesn’t matter who asked you to do it. Slipping in “annual limits” on coverage, manipulating procedure only when there’s something you really want, and then shrugging your shoulders and calling yourself a prisoner of the Senate parlimentarian when you want to facilitate some massively unpopular clause in the interest of the insurance industry — it’s all going to come to rest on you. Personally. I promise.
Steve Benen has debunked Lieberman’s ever-changing reasons for not supporting a public option. Ezra Klein wonders if Lieberman is “torturing liberals” to “settle an old electoral score,” and goes so far as to say he’s costing lives. Josh Orton at MyDD has a way to solve the Lieberman problem: make him an ambassador.
UPDATE: The White House denies it’s looking to make a deal with Lieberman.Click here for reuse options!
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