Did Bloggers Save the Public Option?

A few health care-happy pundits applaud themselves for putting Obama's feet to the fire

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Health care bloggers are patting themselves on the back for the inclusion of a public option in the Senate's health care bill. Who deserves credit for building up the momentum on reform? Bloggers nominate themselves for turning up the pressure on President Obama and congressional Democrats.

  • Bloggers Were Tired of Taking 'No' For an Answer Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight says "none of this would have been possible without the yeoman effort of a relatively small number of bloggers and activists -- they know who they are -- who were tired of taking 'no' for an answer. They wanted this fight because of the paradigm-shifting implications it could have for how business gets done in the Democratic Party. And, somewhat to my surprise, they're having it." Meanwhile, Silver says "conservative activists have been distracted by ACORN, Van Jones, the NFL's conspiracy against Rush Limbaugh, and who-knows-what."
  • Liberal Bloggers Should Take a Victory Lap  At The Huffington Post, Peter Daou says "there's absolutely no doubt that [the public option] is alive primarily because of the vigorous efforts of online progressive activists and bloggers on Huffington Post, Firedoglake, Daily Kos, TPM, Think Progress, Media Matters, Salon, AmericaBlog, Crooks and Liars, and hundreds of smaller sites (not to mention MoveOn)." But Daou warns bloggers not to expect any accolades. He says "the credit will go to liberal-leaning legislators and will reference 'public support,' neglecting the fact that it took bloggers to draw attention to the polling that showed a majority favored the public option.
  • Democracy at Work   In The Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan says Obama supporters are finally understanding their role in his presidency. "What part of 'we' in 'we are the ones we've been waiting for?' does the Beltway still not understand?" he asks. "Why has it taken this long for the Obamaphiles to tackle their leader. He's the follower, for Pete's sake, remember? The people who voted for him are the leaders. So make him."
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