LIEBERMAN, ONE DAY LATER, FIVE YEARS LATER…. Well, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) is certainly getting plenty of attention today, which suggests his threats yesterday have given him exactly what he wanted.
Today, Lieberman added that a public option would have to be “off the table” entirely before he’d consider supporting the bill.
“We can come back in three or four years if the reforms — the other reforms we adopt are not working,” Lieberman explained. “But I think they will.”
Just so we’re clear, this puts Lieberman to Olympia Snowe’s right. Snowe’s argument is that there should be a trigger — if reforms come up short of expectations, a public option would kick into existence, and insurers would know that possibility exists, so they’d have a built-in incentive. Lieberman’s argument is that even a trigger is too much — if reforms come up short of expectations, then maybe lawmakers will think about debating something in “three or four years.”
Funny, Lieberman had a much different position* when he was running for president five years ago.
Sen. Joe Lieberman (ID-CT) seems to have seriously changed his position on a public health insurance program — from supporting it years ago, to staunchly opposing it now.
Back when Lieberman was a full-fledged Democrat and sought the party’s nomination for President…. Lieberman was presenting the public option as a sensible, centrist plan for the country. But now he’s promising to filibuster a Democratic proposal to establish one. So what changed?
Michael Goldfarb asked yesterday whether Joe Lieberman is “the greatest senator ever.” I think we know the answer.
* Update: TPM is walking this report back, explaining that Lieberman proposed expanding government-run health care programs for the young, extending it up to age 25, and the creation of an exchange modeled after the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. He stopped short of offering a public option at the time.