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Expose Joe Lieberman's Amoral Primitivity

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The second path is to try and pick up a Republican moderate. But this too seems unlikely, as Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), Reid's best bet, has also expressed opposition to the Medicare buy-in provision.

The third path would be to appease Lieberman and wipe the provisions that he deems controversial from the bill. This, however, would likely lose Reid several progressive votes -- advancing the cause no further.

The final path would be to try the reconciliation, the parliamentary procedure that would allow Democrats to pass chunks of health care reform by a simple up or down vote. There are a host of hurdles that come with going down this route, including questions over what, exactly, could be passed. And at this point both the White House and Reid's office seem hesitant to use the procedural tool, even after Lieberman's latest round of opposition.

Reid could also try and find another compromise, but it's not clear there are many of those left. And at this point, the underlying dynamic seems to be that Lieberman will destroy any compromise the left likes. That, in fact, seems to be the compromise: Lieberman will pass the bill if he can hurt liberals while doing so. From Lieberman's perspective, the compromise is killing the compromise.

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Andy Schmookler, an award-winning author, political commentator, radio talk-show host, and teacher, was the Democratic nominee for Congress from Virginia's 6th District. His new book -- written to have an impact on the central political battle of our time -- is (more...)

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In 1992 Jerry Brown of CA was a candidate for Pres... by Richard Pietrasz on Tuesday, Dec 15, 2009 at 4:38:22 PM
One member of the caucus deliberately thwarts the ... by Andrew Bard Schmookler on Tuesday, Dec 15, 2009 at 5:59:34 PM
What is so poetic about this is that Democrats are... by Starbuck on Tuesday, Dec 15, 2009 at 9:14:33 PM
I agree that the forgiveness of Lieberman's sins, ... by Andrew Bard Schmookler on Tuesday, Dec 15, 2009 at 9:32:06 PM