An article ran in the Politico yesterday which I thought rather credulously repeated Senate Republicans’ claims about how much success they think they’ll have scuttling the Health Care fix bill as it moves through the reconciliation process. (See our earlier piece on the Senate GOP’s psyops strategy to kill Health Care Reform in the House.)
But there’s a part of this drama that’s gotten far too little attention.
Most of what senate Republicans say they’re going to try to do is fight like crazy to keep the least popular parts of the original Senate package in the bill. That’s right. They’re going to go to the mat for the ‘Cornhusker Kickback.’ They’re going to do everything they can to prevent the “Cornhusker Kickback” from being overturned. Same with the “Louisiana Purchase”, the tax on “Cadillac” Health Care plans and a bunch of other stuff.
As we know, what happens in reality doesn’t matter in politics. What matters is how reality is portrayed in 30 second attack ads. But I think, on both sides of the political spectrum, the implications of this effort haven’t been adequately thought through.
So much of the what the GOP is trying to do now is about one big galactic psych-out. And the psych-out pyrotechnics are so overblown in part because the threats sort of fall apart on their face. If you step back a lot of it amounts to, “Don’t you dare pass that bill, or I’ll shoot my foot right off!”
Some dares really are worth taking.
Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.