Enough with Bipartisanship

Bipartisanship simply for the sake of bipartisanship is dumb.  If it helps bring about better public policy for Americans, great, but if all it serves to do is weaken potentially good policy until it is not so good, bipartisanship is futile and dumb (or certainly so when you've got solid majorities in a unified government).  The New Republic has a great editorial on the matter:

 Bipartisan reform seems to be dead.

which we say: Thank goodness. In the last few months, few political
spectacles have been more unnerving than the sight of President Obama
and his allies lowering their ambitions, bit by bit, in a painfully
futile effort to win support from Republicans.The pattern was on
perfect display this week. One of the biggest flash points in the
reform debate concerns whether to create a public insurance plan–a
government-run program, like Medicare, that would compete with private
insurers for business. Liberals (including those at this magazine) love
the idea, because they think a government plan will be more reliable,
not to mention cheaper. Conservatives hate the idea, because they fear
a government-run program will run private insurers out of business. As
an effort to forge a consensus, some Democrats have suggested ditching
the public plan and, instead, creating a set of consumer-run, nonprofit
health care cooperatives. The hope was that these co-ops would be more
acceptable to the GOP, since they wouldn't be government-run. But the
hope turned out to be baseless. As the idea started to gain momentum,
Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl held a conference call to denounce the
co-ops as government-run insurance by another name. He and his
colleagues weren't budging.

This paragraph sums it all up beautifully:

None of this should be surprising. In the last two decades, Democrats
have tried a variety of health care reforms–some big, some small. They
proposed to insure everybody, and they proposed to insure just kids.
They tried to restructure the entire insurance market, and they tried
merely to regulate the most egregiously restrictive HMO practices. But
Republicans attacked every single measure with the same charge: It's
socialized medicine. This is not a party out to criticize and modify
health care reform. This is a party out to kill health care reform. 
[emphasis mine]

Democrats, especially those in Congress and the White House would do well to remember this point.  If Democrats want real health care reform, they are simply going to have to do it themselves.

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