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In the Fight

By Matthew Yglesias  

"In the Fight"

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MoveOn takes a break from public option advocacy to hit a Republican over health care:

“As House Minority Leader and a favorite of the insurance industry, John’s shown the courage to stand up for the big guy,” MoveOn charges in the ad.

“He’s defended health insurance companies’ rights to jack up your premiums, to drop you whenever they feel like it, and most recently, to maintain monopolies that hurt consumers.”

I think that’s an example of the political upside to passing health reform. As is well-known by now, if you ask people about “Obama’s health care plan” or something along those lines, it polls very poorly. But many of the specific provisions poll well. Anyone who already voted for one or the other version of health reform is vulnerable—very vulnerable—to the attack that he or she voted for Barack Obama’s trillion dollar death panel boondoggle. But a candidate who’s willing and able to embrace that vote and say something passed at least has the chance to fight back with ads accusing his or her opponent of defending health insurance companies’ rights to jack up your premiums, to drop you whenever they feel like it, etc.

Even if they manage to make themselves somewhat more popular than Republicans, House Democrats are going to face big losses anyway so there’s no sense in being too pollyannish about any strategy. Bottom line is that when you’re facing trouble, it’s smart to at least give yourself a fighting chance.

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