An April Fools Day Joke-
A Word About Digital Subscriptions to The Huffington Post
Posted: 04/ 1/11 07:55 AM ET
Today marks a significant transition for The Huffington Post Media Group, as we introduce digital subscriptions for employees of The New York Times. It’s an important step that we hope you will see as an investment in The Huffington Post. If you are not an employee of The New York Times, you will continue to have full and free access to our news, information, opinion, and the rest of our rich offerings. If you are an employee of The Times, you may view one free article a month or choose one of our NYT Employee Digital Subscription Plans®. In our most popular plan, Times employees can view the first 6 letters of each word at no charge (including slideshows of adorable kittens). After 6 letters, we will ask you to become a digital subscriber.
Not An April Fools Day Joke-
Jim Messina Is a Perfect Choice to Be Obama’s Campaign Manager
Posted: 04/ 1/11 09:06 AM ET
I’m not sure we could have gotten a Public Option no matter what the president did or did not do. The Senate filibuster, the health insurance lobby, and Senator Lieberman were our chief obstacles. The administration and Senate leadership had negotiated a deal with progressive Senators to include a Medicare buy-in for people from 55 to 65 years of age — which would have been a huge advance. But then the insurance industry told Lieberman — who had favored the plan — to drop it. And that was that.
I think Messina and others, like David Axelrod, would agree that there were mistakes made in the campaign. One of those was allowing the battle to go on for so long — indulging Senator Baucus’ attempt to get bipartisan compromise over so many months that it amplified our opponent’s ability to dominate the air waves. By the way, I don’t know that Messina could have personally done a lot more to get Baucus off of the bipartisan program more quickly — notwithstanding their close relationship — though I suspect he tried.
The White House was being told that the bill had to go through the committee process in order to keep sixty votes. Getting Baucus to move that process more quickly would have required a major confrontation, that at the time the White House apparently did not think would be productive. In retrospect Messina may view it differently, I don’t know.
Another problem was not shifting soon enough to framing the battle as a fight with the insurance industry — a message frame that ultimately allowed us to win. But the decision for the administration not to use the insurance frame early was not made to “coddle” the industry. It was made to keep their money off the airwaves as long as possible. I think there is now general acknowledgment that the campaign would have been better off moving to the insurance frame earlier.
Also Not A Joke-
Veal Appeal: Whitewashing of Health Care Reform Battle Continues
By: Jon Walker
Friday April 1, 2011 10:11 am
Over at the Huffington Post, in an attempt to defend Jim Messina, Robert Creamer reaches for the absolute biggest brush he can find to totally whitewash the actual history of the health care reform battle.
The problem for the public option wasn’t that the president didn’t fight hard enough for it. It’s failure to make it in the laws was the result of President Obama actively fighting hard against it, while lying about this support. It was confirmed by the New York Times that President Obama sold out the public option in a deal with the hospitals in exchange for their support of the law. His many behind-the-scenes efforts to undercut it shows he was committed to the secret deal.
In the end, it was fully proven without a doubt that the filibuster wasn’t ever a real obstacle to the public option. The Affordable Care Act was finished with a reconciliation bill that can’t be filibustered and could have included a deficit-reducing public option. The fact that it didn’t speaks volumes.