Public Option Declared Dead, Again

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March 12, 2010 11:19 a.m.

This morning, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said that he would whip for a public option if one is included in the House’s reconciliation package. This was great news to progressives, who yesterday attacked Durbin for saying he’d whip against a public option if it was not in the House package.

But then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi burst the bubble at her weekly press conference.“We’re talking about something that’s not going to be part of the legislation,” she said. “I’m quite sad that a public option isn’t in there. But it isn’t a case of it’s not in there because the Senate is whipping against it. It’s not in there because they don’t have the votes to have it in there.”

Durbin says he’ll only whip for a public option if there’s one in the House reconciliation. Pelosi says there’s no public option in the legislation.

Although those progressive groups will keep pushing for a public option, the resistance — already so clear from the White House — is now coming from all sides.

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