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Lieberman Gangs Up To Block Health Care Reform

by: tparty

Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 13:04:05 PM EDT

Staying true to his comments from yesterday, Joe Lieberman is now officially working to block health care reform in this Congress.

Today, Lieberman joined Ben Nelson and 4 other Senators in a letter sent to Senate leadership asking for a delay in the process - once again spitting in his good friend Chris Dodd's face, a mere 48 hours after Dodd's HELP bill with a public option was voted out of committee.


A bipartisan group of centrist and conservative senators sent a letter to the Democratic and Republican leaders on Friday urging delay in consideration of health care reform.

The letter, obtained by the Huffington Post, was drafted by Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and is also signed by Democratic Reps. Mary Landrieu (La.) and Ron Wyden (Ore.). Independent Joe Lieberman (Conn.), who caucuses with Democrats, signed on, as did Maine Republican Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins -- moderates heavily courted by President Obama.

The organized effort to slow down the process is a blow to the reform effort. Obama has pushed hard for a final vote before the August recess, arguing that delaying until September could slow momentum and risk missing a historic opportunity.

(Read the full letter here - PDF.)

Never mind that Joe Lieberman has had more than 15 years to think about how to get health care reform done since the last time he helped kill it. He still needs "additional time."

It's 1993-94 all over again.

Update: Yes, it's 1993-94 all over again:

"I believe a lot of Democrats who had previously voted for President Reagan and President Bush voted for President Clinton because they really felt he was a different kind of Democrat," said Senator Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut, who is a vice-chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council....

"In the first four months of the Government, there has been some disappointment both on a policy ground and a personnel ground," Mr. Lieberman said....

The Democratic moderates point to a long list of signals they feel send a message of overwhelming liberalism to voters: a budget that favors raising taxes over cutting spending; a Cabinet dominated by liberal Washington insiders; a fondness for ambitious and expensive programs like the proposal to overhaul health care...

-- "'New Democrats' Say Clinton Has Veered Left and Left Them," By Michael Kelly, New York Times, Sunday, May 23, 1993

After months of posturing, Congress is trying to come to grips with health care reform. But with only about two weeks left before the July 4 recess, the Clinton administration and supporters of universal health care in Congress must move quickly. Although the search for consensus is going badly, it must not fail....

Conservative Democrats, such as Connecticut's Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, are becoming equivocating artists. Mr. Lieberman is not being helpful to the case of health care by saying reform may not pass this fall.

-- "Health Reform Needs Resuscitation," Editorial, Hartford Courant, Jun 18, 1994

Pinning down Connecticut's Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman on health care is like trying to hold quicksilver in your hands.

Mr. Lieberman has said he is not fully behind President Clinton's proposal or Senate Majority Leader George J. Mitchell's alternative or any of the bills that have come from various Senate committees. He's said little about what he is for....

Mr. Lieberman acknowledges that he has studied the health care issue for months if not years and has had briefings from all sides. By now, he should have a clear position.

-- "Sen. Lieberman, Please Stand Up," Editorial, Hartford Courant, August 10, 1994

Mr. Lieberman has also attracted support as a result of his strong stance against the President's health-care plan. According to the National Library on Money and Politics, a nonpartisan research group in Washington advocating campaign financing reform, he garnered $128,400 from health and insurance political action committees in 1993, the eighth highest total in the Senate.

-- "6 Years After Squeaker, Lieberman's Star Rises," By Jonathan Rabinovitz, New York Times, Tuesday, November 8, 1994

tparty :: Lieberman Gangs Up To Block Health Care Reform
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Lieberman (0.00 / 0)
 There is no surprise here....Lieberman  has  been faithfully representing corporate interests  his whole Senate life.

This is Obama Stand up moment (0.00 / 0)
If he can't stand up to these chumps and get a Health care bill with a strong public option available on day one passed he deserves to be a one term President.

Ned Lamont, we're sorry! We're really REALLY sorry! (4.00 / 1)
Please come back for 2012.  We need to get this jerk Lieberman out for good.  Please, Ned, consider running again in 2012.

Yez, please (0.00 / 0)
Your state calls. You WON.

Just sayin'

[ Parent ]
Yes, Please! (0.00 / 0)
Lieberman's star hasn't risen; it is in "the toilet" where it belongs.

[ Parent ]
The Perverse Conceit of Joe Lieberman and his tiny centrist gang (4.00 / 3)
is on display here once again.  Do Lieberman and his usual suspects not comprehend just how disingenuous this 'give us more time' thing sounds?  Lieberman isn't even on any of the health care legislation committees.

First, the Administration has already asked Speaker Pelosi to make sure a final combined House version does explicitly drive down costs.  That issue has been identified and will be addressed.

The key here is that Lieberman has already come out against a competing public option.  They're running cover for the Max Baucus Secret Caucus (aka the Baucus-Grassley-Conrad-run Senate Finance Committee) that is squealing like baby pigs because Sen. Chris Dodd's HELP Committee has already passed and reported a version with a public option in it.

They want, in fact, to block the kind of effective health care reform that the overwhelming majority of Americans -- and the AMA (which yesterday stated it's support for the House bill!) -- are demanding.

The perverse conceit here is that this same centrist gang, which never takes legislative leadership -- particularly Lieberman, Nelson, Snowe and Collins -- are the ones who in February elevated themselves to the status of "deal-makers" by insisting that the stimulus bill be reduced of about $100 billion of actual economic stimulus.

Their argument at the time, which Lieberman's staffers were repeating even today in response to callers, was that this had to be done "in order to have a bill that would pass".

And this needed to be done in order to get whose votes?  Well theirs actually.

Mark my words, they will attempt to pull the same thing with the full public option this time.  And we can't let them, Democrats and progressives can't let them, the House and Senate leadership can't let them, and President Obama can't let them.

Health Care Rally help!!!!! (0.00 / 0)
Hai fellow leftienutz

I wanted to draw your attention to this. It is very important if we want to thwart the LIEberthing.


If anyone can help or suggestions please comment there, or here, and I will pass it along.

Thanks for all you do.

Flushing the toilet (0.00 / 0)
Let's make sure this turd goes down the drain in 2012!

Krugman on the six deadly hypocrites (4.00 / 2)
What's especially galling is the hypocrisy of their claimed reason for delaying progress - concern about the fiscal burden. After all, in the past most of them have shown no concern at all for the nation's long-term fiscal outlook.

Case in point: the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, which denied Medicare the right to bargain for lower drug prices, locked in overpayments to private insurance companies, and did nothing, nothing at all, to pay for its proposed outlays. How many of these six self-proclaimed defenders of solvency voted no on the crucial procedural vote? One. (Joe Lieberman, to my surprise.)


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