Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect and Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone agree that the health care bill taking shape in the Senate is a bad one. But Kuttner believes progressives should vote for the bill, while Taibbi thinks it should be killed.
Kuttner argues that progressives risk big election losses in 2010 and 2012 if President Obama's efforts to reform health care are rejected. Obama, Kuttner says, has staked his presidency on the passage of this bill, and if it fails in Congress, "it will make Obama even more gun-shy about promoting more reform, it will create even more political paralysis, it will embolden the Republicans to block what this president is trying to do -- some of which is good -- at every turn. So I would hold my nose and vote for it." Kuttner says that concessions made by the White House in its deal with Big Pharma are responsible for the dilemma.
Taibbi argues that the bill "doesn't address the two biggest problems with the health care crisis... and additionally is a big give-away to the insurance companies." He says there will be better chances for reform in the future, "I think it's much better for the Democrats to lose on this issue and then have to regroup maybe eight years later, six years later, and try again and do a better job the next time then to have it go through."