In a press conference today, Nancy Pelosi said that a bill without a public option is now possible in the House. But Raul Grijalva, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, isn’t going to be one of those votes. Mike Stark is on the Hill, and asked Grijalva what he intends to do:
I think what the Senate is doing is effectively emasculating an opportunity to have a public option. It’s up to House members, and it’s up to us to continue to hold the line.
I hope that it comes to conference, I hope that we just don’t get a Senate bill that we have to vote up or down. But if that becomes the case, and the scenario that I’m seeing now coming out the Senate is the product, then I’m not going to vote for it.
There were 65 members of the House who stood with Rep. Grijalva, and said they would vote against any bill that does not have a public option. In order for a bill without one to pass, it would mean the complete collapse of the progressive caucus. It would be proof positive that they are bereft of integrity and nothing but placeholders in strong Democratic districts who say the right things when it doesn’t matter, but abandon their principles and facilitate the corporatist agenda when it does.
We thank Representative Grijalva for his strong leadership throughout this fight. If Nancy Pelosi tries to pass a bill without a public option, we will be thanking him and those who stick by him with a fundraiser and GOTV efforts in their districts during the next election.
For those who decide that it’s in the best interest of their communities to vote for a bill that has insurance lobbyists crowing “we win,” we’ll be recruiting and supporting challengers against them who embrace Medicare for All.
They can’t represent WellPoint to the detriment of their constituents and hold a strong Democratic seat uncontested.