Has Rahm’s Assumption about Progressives been Vindicated?
by Glenn Greenwald
Politico’s Ben Smith yesterday suggested that one important aspect of Rahm Emanuel’s health care strategy — to ignore the demands of progressives on the ground that they would fall into line at the end no matter what — has been vindicated. Smith points to a new poll showing near-unanimous support for the bill among liberals as well as the fact that not a single progressive member of the House (not even Dennis Kucinich) will oppose this bill even though the prime progressive objections were ignored. Smith’s argument unsurprisingly provoked immediate objections from numerous progressives — Paul Krugman, Markos Moultisas, Chris Bowers — who argue that in the wake of Scott Brown’s election, Emanuel advocated a drastically scaled-back version of health care reform because he believed the original, larger version couldn’t pass. If (as looks highly likely) the current bill passes, then, they argue, Emanuel will have been proven wrong — not indicated.