The Republican plan to pass 'health-care reform'?
Sam Stein is hearing some rumblings:
Health care reform advocates are concerned that passing a scaled-back version of reform legislation -- an option being considered by President Obama and Democratic Party leaders -- could end up playing into the hands of Republican electoral politics. […]
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell "will have his whole caucus vote for it and make it a political win for the Republicans," one well-connected Democratic health care strategist said. "They'll say, 'This was the Republican plan from the beginning. We're glad the Democrats joined us.' And take all the credit for passing reform."
Lo and behold, on Thursday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich suggested that the Republican Party do just that, arguing that it would be ‘clever’ for the GOP to pass non-controversial reform measures with ‘huge bipartisan majorities.’ Alternately, some Democrats might welcome such a move. "Hell yeah," a Democratic congressional aide said. "We would have created a bi-partisan bill. We would have shown leadership. And we'd get credit for that."
One thing you never see any of these strategists say is that this or that approach would good because it would help more people, or bad because it will help fewer people. Oddly, you don't even see many politicians saying that. It's as if we were trying to give insurance coverage to poll numbers.