VIDEO: Woolsey reaffirms her plans to introduce public option in the House tomorrow

Posted by: ST on March 22, 2010 at 6:14 pm

Give an inch, they take miles:

A leader of the House liberals’ caucus said Monday she’ll introduce new legislation to revive the public option.

Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.), the co-chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said she plans to unveil legislation to add the government-run option to the national healthcare exchange established by legislation President Barack Obama is to sign tomorrow.

“We will introduce a robust public option bill on the very day the president signs the reconciliation bill into law,” Woolsey said Monday during an interview on MSNBC.

The public insurance option had been a part of the healthcare legislation first approved by the House in November, but Senate Democratic leaders were forced to abandon the provision after it became clear that they wouldn’t be able to get all 60 Democrats (at the time) to sign onto legislation containing that provision.

Woolsey and her co-chairman of the caucus, Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), had pushed for the public option throughout the different stages of the health debate, but still ended up voting in favor of the legislation in the end, despite some threats to do otherwise earlier in the process.

Courtesy of The B-Cast, here’s the video of Woolsey’s remarks to MSDNC (via Freedom’s Lighthouse):

Not that this is exactly surprising. Earlier this month Woolsey, a shameless apologist for an admitted rapist and who also late last year suggested the IRS should “scruitinze” Catholic bishops for … their strong support of the “Stupak amendment”, wrote an opinion piece for Roll Call in which she said she’d introduce the politically poisonous public option the day after ObamaCare passed. Because the monstrosity that is ObamaCare just is not, you know, complete without a “public option.”

The President, too, would be on board with it if he could get assurances that it had enough votes to pass – one way or another. From an early March Mother Jones piece:

With some 36 Senators (and counting) now signed on to support the public option, Rep. Lynn Woolsey, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, expressed cautious optimism about the proposal passing through reconciliation. “I’m not sure that the public option is dead at this point,” Woolsey told Mother Jones on Thursday, adding that support for government-run health care plan in the Senate keeps “growing and growing.”

Woolsey, along with other members of key House committees, met with Obama on Thursday and pressed the issue with the president. “The president doesn’t believe there are 51 votes in the Senate, but if there [are], he’ll support it,” she said. The Progressive Caucus has been actively lobbying the upper chamber to include the provision in the package of reconciliation changes to the comprehensive bill, which has already passed the Senate and is pending a vote in the House.

Whether or not the public option makes it into the final legislation, Woolsey emphasized that House progressives would generally support the bill. “We’re pretty together as a caucus,” Woolsey said. “The President laid out the broad outlines of the plan—I know that’s probably all that he could have gotten from the Senate.”


But even if the public plan doesn’t make it into the current bill, Woolsey suggested that she’d be interested in passing the proposal separately—an idea that Senator Sherrod Brown recently floated. “Somewhere along the way, it’s going to be absolutely necessary to have competition” that the public option would provide, Woolsey said. “Health care reform, as big as it is, is not a final product.”

Gird your loins and shine up your armor. We have another battle coming.

Related reading: Rich Lowry – Five Reasons Not to Despair

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7 Responses to “VIDEO: Woolsey reaffirms her plans to introduce public option in the House tomorrow”


  1. Great White Rat says:

    I have to give some credit where credit is due. My Congressman is a freshman Democrat (John Adler) who voted against the bill last time and held firm again this time. Beyond that, he’s been firing off robo-calls – sometimes 2 or 3 a week – asking the people in this district to let him know what they thought about the issue. Imagine that – a congressman who actually listens to the voters. I’ll have to see how he votes on Woolsey’s abomination, and on other critical legislation for the rest of this term, but he’s earned the benefit of the doubt so far.

    Grandstanders like Stupak, however, may be even more loathsome than Pelosi and her ilk. At least you know what to expect from Pelosi. Stupak spent months posturing and then sold out – for the second time – for nothing more than the promise of an executive order from Obama. And you know Obama will rescind that order as soon as he thinks it’s politically advantageous.

    Even political whores like Ben Nelson actually got something in return for their perfidy. Stupak got nothing but an IOU he may never collect.

  2. Great White Rat says:

    Oooh, even better….now I find that the loony leftists at Salon put Adler at #5 on their list of 10 Most Cowardly Democrats. Yeah, listening to your constituents instead of Dear Leader is cowardly, all right….


  3. Totally, utterly, COMPLETELY off-topic, but I was so glad to see you over at my place! Better late than never, my friend, better late than never. I’ll bookmark here and be back often — and I’m off to find your Twitter feed!

  4. Kate says:

    Hey Great White…is Adler the one who may be running against John Runyan in the fall? Maybe he’s a bit on edge about the impending doom with an Eagle defenseman ready to sack his political ambitions?