Here is a message that progressive organizations and media outlets need to start sending to all Democratic party committees and members of Congress:
We are done attacking Republicans until you pass a public option for health care.
Until a public option is passed, I dont want to hear about the latest hate and idiocy spewing from Limbaugh, or Tancredo, or Palin, or Gingrich, or whoever. And to tell you the truth, I dont want to attack them for it, either. Because, right now, Republicans are not the obstacle to progressive governance. Instead, Democrats who refuse to support a public option are the obstacle.
Stop telling me how bad Republicans are–we don’t need a single one to pass the public option. In fact, not only do we not need any Republicans, but a public option can become a reality even if nine Senate Democrats, and 39 House Democrats, defect. This should be a slam dunk.
We should be naming names, flying to their home states to hold large rallies, and lining up primary challengers against public-option averse Democrats. Instead, our leaders are holding fundraisers for them, pressuring their primary opponents, and hosting dinners in their honor. Kind of makes you wonder how serious even those Democrats in favor of the public option are about change.
So here is the deal we should make: progressive media outlets and organizations will only start attacking Republicans again Democrats pass a public health care option that is open to all Americans who are not currently eligible for Medicare, Medicaid, or S-CHIP. Until that happens, we are not allies. Instead, they are the obstacle, and we are the pressure.
But, until then, I really have grown sick of progressives telling me about the latest stupid thing that fell out of Limbaugh’s mouth. He just ain’t the problem right now. Democrats like Evan Bayh, Ben Nelson, and Arlen Specter are. If the Democratic leadership is either unwilling or unable to pressure enough of those types of Democrats into passing the lowest bar of progressive governance, then it is time to redirect our activism into less partisan and /or less electoral directions.
I’d only add that I’m not convinced that Obama isn’t part of the Bayh/Ben Nelson/ Specter axis of idiots.