by Patrick Appel

Chait argues, convincingly, that Republicans could have stopped health care reform:

If the Republican Party had more tactical flexibility in its candidate selection and legislative strategy, nothing like health care reform would have succeeded. Luckily, as Yglesias notes, the structure of the conservative movement is such that it is only able to criticize left deviation and never right deviation, even when right deviation created a worse outcome by conservatives' own terms. The primary challenge against Specter, in particular, was an utter disaster, yet you simply never hear Republicans admit this.

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