One of my strongest hopes is that everyone in the media, especially on the left, can simply stop pretending the new health reform law is some great progressive victory. It is not. It is a conservative, pro-corporate piece of legislation. From the CBS News:
Obama: Well, partly because I couldn’t get the kind of cooperation from Republicans that I had hoped for. We thought that if we shaped a bill that wasn’t that different from bills that had previously been introduced by Republicans, including a Republican governor in Massachusetts who’s now running for president. That we would be able to find some common ground there. And we just couldn’t. And that was costly partly because it created the kind of partisanship and bickering that really turns people off.
Obama is fully admitting the new health care law he pushed is almost identical to a Republican bill in the ’90s, a Heritage Foundation plan from the same time, and a law supported by the man who almost became the Republican Party’s presidential nominee in 2008. Both President Obama and Nancy Pelosi have acknowledged they only passed what was effectively an old Republican proposal.
In its basic design, the new law is even very similar to George Bush’s Medicare Part D, which also provides help by using extremely wasteful subsidized private health insurance exchanges. Obama even promised PhRMA he’d leave in place all the corrupt sweetheart deals from Medicare Part D that Democrats claimed to have found so offensive.
It doesn’t matter what prominent Democrats were telling the base when they were trying to sell the vote. Just because a basically Republican health care law was passed by Democrats doesn’t make it some great progressive policy victory. It is clear from this 60 Minutes interview not even President Obama honestly believes that, despite what he once tried to convince the base.