Blue Dogs teaming up with House GOP to kill health care reform




It gets worse.

Some Blue Dogs are sidling up to House Republicans to kill health care reform:

The Blue Dog revolt against the House Democratic leadership’s health care bill took a new turn Tuesday morning, when several members of the centrist faction made overtures to House Republicans about joining forces to slow and reshape the measure.

Republican aides said there was great interest among GOP lawmakers in trying to work with dissidents in the 52-member Blue Dog Coalition to try to stop the legislation.

The article named two Blue Dogs who want to work with the GOP: Reps. Charlie Melancon (LA) and Jim Cooper (TN).

Jim Cooper helped kill health care reform back in 1993-94. Now, he’s trying to do it again. What’s really bad is that Cooper was a surrogate for the Obama campaign — on health care reform. Read what Mike Lux had to say about Cooper back in February of 2008:

I was part of the Clinton White House team on the health care reform issue in 1993/94, and no Democrat did more to destroy our chances in that fight than Jim Cooper. We had laid down a marker very early that we thought universal coverage was the most essential element to getting a good package, saying we were to happy to negotiate over the details but that universality was our bottom line.

Cooper, a leader of conservative Dems on the health care issue, instead of working with us, came out early and said universality was unimportant, and came out with a bill that did almost nothing in terms of covering the uninsured. He quickly became the leading spokesman on the Dem side for the insurance industry position, and undercut us at every possible opportunity, basically ending any hopes we had for a unified Democratic Party position. I was never so delighted to see a Democrat lose as when he went down in the 1994 GOP tide.

Unfortunately, he came back, like a bad penny.

It is such a huge mistake for Obama to use a guy like this to defend their position on health care. The signal it sends to reporters, organizations, and activists like myself who know something about the old health care battles is that Obama truly doesn’t care about comprehensive health care reform or universal coverage, and that the health care package you would propose if President would be a conservative, pro-insurance industry bill. The campaign ought to be trying to reassure folks who care about this issue, and using a guy like Cooper does just the opposite.

And, now Cooper is trying to cut deals with Republicans. A very bad penny.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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