The Two Worst Senators
So which Senate Democrats should you hate, today? There are so many to choose from! Let's name names.
Max Baucus, Kent Conrad, Blanche Lincoln, Thomas Carper, and Bill Nelson voted against a strong public plan in the Senate Finance Committee health bill. Baucus, Conrad, and Lincoln voted against any public plan.* And then Kent Conrad of North Dakota and Blance Lincoln of Arkansas just went above and beyond the call of duty by voting with the Republicans in favor of using the Finance Committee health bill to re-fund abstinence-only education.
Remember: these are the Senators who are on-the-fence on health care reform because they claim to be worried about the cost and its effect on the deficit. So they voted against a strong public option that would save billions of dollars and then they voted to spend extra money on a program that has never, ever worked, ever.
"Moderates" are the worst creatures in politics. We'd take a thousand Michele Bachmanns over any more of these two.
So what's next? Well this bill will eventually have to be merged with the Senate HELP bill, and then merged again with whatever passes the House, which will be a some compromise between their three committee bills, and long story short, there might be a public option thing in it, somewhere, so we needn't be so hopeless! Except for the fact that what those Finance Committee votes proved is that Senate Democrats are so cowardly and dysfunctional that they will not vote for things they claim to support because they're scared no one else will vote for things they support either.
*Baucus keeps insisting he, personally, supports a public plan, but can't vote for it because it couldn't get 60 votes, even though it doesn't need 60 votes unless Baucus thinks Reid can't round up enough votes to break a theoretical filibuster, which wouldn't even be necessary if everyone who claimed to personally support the public plan actually voted for it instead of saying they can't vote for it because other people won't vote for it. Democracy!