Save Health Care Reform?
Ezra quibbles with my label-mates:
The Atlantic Politics team asks the question on somebody's mind: "Can President Obama's media blitz - appearances on five Sunday talk shows this weekend - save health reform?"
Save health reform from what? Consider the recent developments: Two weeks ago, four of five committees had passed their bills, and one committee was tangled in an interminable and opaque process. Last week, that committee produced a bill that, though not perfect, is pretty close to the other bills on the table. On Friday, the committee chairman and the crucial Republican have both announced that the subsidies need to be raised, which addresses the main problem liberals have with the legislation. Later this week, the Massachusetts Senate is expected to allow an interim replacement for Sen. Ted Kennedy, giving Democrats their 60th vote.
Obama's weekend blitz wasn't meant to save health-care reform. It was meant to push it those final 10 yards. He could fail in that effort, but that's where we sit: incredibly, incredibly close to the finish line. Closer, by far, than we have ever been before.
Meanwhile, Megan starts (glumly) referring to a health care reform as "established fact"--though she argues that it'll cost the Dems the House. Predictably, I disagree with the latter. But more to the point, I think this is the danger in "up to the minute" media, and why Obama is wise to ignore a lot of it. There was a lot of sound and fury this Summer, and a lot of banter about race this Fall. And despite the pile-up of bodies, and the play-action, I'm not sure that the GOP has really moved the ball. It just doesn't look like much had changed.