As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Washington To Constituents: STFU

Ceci Connolly decided to jump on the opportunity to forward a "Democrats in disarray" narrative, arguing that grassroots groups inviting Americans to participate in their government is just too messy and risks hurting the feelings of those "friends" in the Democratic Party who resist real health care reform.

When asking me about the Progressive Change Campaign Committee's TV ads (which begin airing Monday in DC) holding Senate Dems accountable for taking millions from insurance interests and being on the verge of opposing a public option supported by 76% of Americans, Connolly would ask me ridiculous questions like, "Why are you attacking your friends? Wouldn't you agree that these Democrats are better for you on most health care issues than Republicans?"

I had to patiently explain to her that the public option is the defining issue of the health care debate -- if Senators like Baucus and Nelson aren't with us on that, they are not our friends.

Connolly listened, and then chose to dismiss silly activists who are fighting for what 76% of Americans want:

Activists say they are simply pressing for quick delivery of "true health reform," but the intraparty rift runs the risk of alienating centrist Democrats who will be needed to pass a bill.

Even though this story obviously sympathizes with those who want the hippies to STFU and enjoy whatever scraps they can get, I'm OK with having it out there. Because if the Village has to recognize the efforts in the grassroots, they've become too big to ignore. Also illuminating is the fact that not one named source would go on the record saying that such grassroots pressure on wavering Dems is harmful.

Essentially, being told that this pressure isn't working by folks inside the Beltway is a sure sign that it IS. So watch out, Kay Hagan, who apparently is holding up the inclusion of a public option in the Senate HELP Committee's draft. And the same goes for Blanche Lincoln, who has been squishy on the issue in her public statements. Blue America will have a lot to announce on that front in the coming weeks. So support the Campaign for Health Care Choice as we "run the risk of alienating centrist Democrats" once again.

...what's funny about this is the lack of understanding of who controls the process in the health care bill. It's completely obvious that Republicans will not support any kind of reform. Therefore, anyone who wants to impact the legislation must work on the Democratic side. That's simply a rational calculation of where to place pressure.

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