Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Progressives to Obama: Time To Deliver

Eugene Robinson writes in his Washington Post column about the struggles President Obama is enduring pushing through the kind of health care reform he promised on the campaign trail.

Progressives grow increasingly fidgety about the tone and direction emanating out of the White House, as there seems to be more appetite for compromise than there is for digging in to deliver a transformational health care reform package.

As Robinson notes, any reform might be better than what we have currently, but with key components being dropped left and right (universal coverage, price negotiations with big Pharma), the best hopes for groundbreaking reform are dissolving like a Tylenol Rapid Release Gelcap.

Folding on requiring a public option in the final reform package might help get some version of legislation passed by Congress and sent to the President's desk, but for the legions of progressives who responded to Obama's call to action on November 4, an easily accomplished victory is meaningless if it doesn't provide the reform this country needs or that Obama promised was possible.

As Robinson posits, "Giving up on the public option might be expedient. But we didn't elect Obama to be an expedient president. We elected him to be a great one."

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