The public option has been alive, then dead, then alive, then dead so many times now it's enough to make your head spin. Right now it's somewhere in between--an undead public option, still beloved by a large majority of Democrats, but, for now, lacking the political leadership needed to usher it through the legislative process. Nevertheless, the fact that it has a pulse is remarkable in and of itself...so how did we get here all over again? Though the latest action is all in the Senate, the momentum re-emerged in the House.
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"We had heard on the House side that [Colorado Rep. Jared] Polis was talking behind the scenes with folks about why a public option wasn't being pushed," says Adam Green, co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee--one of several progressive pressure groups (including Democracy for America, and Credo) pushing the public option.
That touched off a symbiotic relationship. If Polis, and fellow public option supporter Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) would work the inside game in the House, the groups would build pressure from the outside, and together they could build a formidable list of signatories to a letter.