After what must have been an epic arm-twisting session earlier this week, the obstinately progressive Democratic congressman from Ohio, Dennis Kucinich, has decided to support the Obama administration’s healthcare bill:
Dennis Kucinich, the liberal Congressman from Ohio, has opposed the bill for not going far enough, voting against it when it first came to the floor of the House of Representatives in November. His change of heart will give the White House a last-minute boost.
Kucinich has relentlessly opposed the bill because it doesn’t include a public option, so in his view, doesn’t go far enough.
Kucinich is correct: in spite everything the right-wing keeps barfing up about “a government takeover of healthcare”, there is no public option in the bill, let alone a “government takeover”. (Let alone Death Panels.) All it appears to do is provide assistance to those who can’t afford healthcare and hold the health insurance industry at least a wee tiny bit accountable for the buttslammings it gives consumers in the form of 39% rate hikes and refusals to pay for treatment of “pre-existing conditions”. In return, the insurance companies are gifted with millions of new policies by the mandating of health insurance.
Of course, it’s not over til it’s over, which might be Saturday night. (Why do all these really important votes take place on Saturday night??)
UPDATE: Oh, boo hoo hoo. It looks like Bart Stupak’s 15 minutes of fetus fetishizing fame might finally be coming to a long-overdue end. No Bartie, you can’t use the healthcare bill as a sneaky way to further restrict abortion. Nice try, though. Enjoy the primary challenge, fuckface.