I also want to break down here what went wrong.
Obama failed before he started. And don't kid yourself a co-op option (we already have these by the way...) is a pure and utter and absolute failure.
He failed because he started in the wrong place from the beginning.
The first rule of a successful negotiation is that you always start from your ideal position. You know, if you got to make the decision all by yourself and you thought the best thing in the world would be in your wildest dreams... that's where you start.
In other words, don't cave before you sit down to the table. What is ideal? What should Obama came to the table with?
Single payer healthcare.
It's the cheapest. The most effective. Would cover the most people. It has been proven to work around the world.
What's the problem with single payer healthcare? The hand full of insurance companies left selling health insurance in this country (and there are really just a handful compared to 20 years ago) would have to work harder on life insurance or go back to nursing school.
So that was mistake number one. Obama caved before he came to the table. In fact, he didn't let the ideal outcome at the table at all. Obama started with a compromise position, had he started with single payer, I'd be ranting that a public option is a cop out to single payer, but an acceptable compromise.... for now...
But now, we are discussing the most ludicrious of options.
Think about this.
Co-ops. So called non-profits pooling resources to negotiate lower rates and setting up partner "advocacy organizations" to lobby congress to help out the insurance industry even more.
Here is what a co-op is not:
It is NOT in any way reform to our health care industry. WE HAVE CO-OPS ALL OVER THE COUNTRY ALREADY. They do not work. They become political organizations in their own right. They may be owned by members, but how many members of a credit union have ever been to a meeting? How many Outpost or Willy Street members have ever been to a meeting?
How many actually care to run for office to help run the organization?
It's all good if it's groceries or books or milk farmers who create a co-op. Negotiating the price of your milk as a group makes perfect sense.
Health insurance is a whole other deal. Primarily because the potential for discrimination in health care in a voting membership organization is way high in this country. For example, what if the co-op in a particular area gets together and says no Asians can be covered under their plan.
Think that's crazy? Well how about they say no gay people can cover their partners?
Not so crazy now is it? How about Obama writes into the plan that they cannot discriminate against gays and their partners? Now he doesn't have enough votes to pass it at all, it fails and he gets to say he tried at least... A co-op will create the tyrrany of the majority in regional areas around the country. This is as Matt Taibi said, "Sick and Wrong".
In a public option this becomes mute. Anyone can get covered regardless of their relationship status. No private rules apply. How fast do you think insurance company executives will get on the boards of those "non-profit co-op organizations"?
This is the most insane of the proposals.
Let's see. Keep every thing the same as far as how insurance is delivered. Add bigger conglomerates that we can control internally. Add requirements to cover everyone so the cost skyrockets for everyone. Finally, sell the new super more expensive package as some sort of "health care reform" and give a discount to approximately 20% more than we pay now... When it all fails as this is no doubt going to in the long run, blame the Dems for the crappy idea to regulate the insurance industry.
Dems are done politically for 20 years if they don't allow a vote on at the very least the public option. Done. Their voters will stop caring for another 15 years. You can't promise the people of this country something this big and then give them a worse product than they started with in the first place. They're DONE if they don't force a floor vote on the public option.
This is the B.S. the so-called Dems in Congress and now the White House are trying to sell us. A vote on crap is somehow better than forcing everyone to take sides.
I say vote on single payer (medicare for all), vote on the public option and then on this crap co-op option. I want to know where everyone stands on each option. It's only fair.
MAKE CONGRESS TAKE A STAND.
CALL AND TELL THEM YOU WANT A VOTE ON THE PUBLIC OPTION regardless if it will pass or not, OR YOU WANT NOTHING AT ALL!!!
How can he get this back? Force this vote. I guarantee that if only 43 say privately they will vote for the public option plan an actual VOTE will change that equation significantly.
FORCE THE VOTE. MAKE THEM TAKE SIDES. ALL OF THEM OFFICIALLY.