Divide and Conquer. The insurance companies. Make them fight 50 states.
Let the Red States thumb their nose at their constituents and opt out of public option. We let them opt out of the stimulus. A couple of governors opted out...Palin and Sanford...look where it got them. Their legislatures overruled them. They became vulnerable to attacks and irrelevant.
Insurance is a state's right issue. Let states make up their own minds. There are enough Blue states to maintain the economies of scale for the option. There are also Red states with governors like Brian Schweitzer.
Let's give it to them and tell them they don't have to keep it. They can opt out of it. The public option will be self sustaining and won't cost them anything substantial. Leave it to local politics. We are fighting 3-4 hydras with 400 heads each. Let's make those hydras spend exponentially more money as they try to pay off the myriad of local politicians in all 50 states instead of letting them exploit the DC bottleneck.
This creates a paradigm shift.
All of a sudden the Red ones have lost their windmill.
Also, it will take 4 years to put into place. There's time for demographics to change and opt in.
It may relieve ever increasing stress on state budgets.
Red states will be less competitive for businesses.
This isn't about need based assistance. I'm talking about the idea of a govt administered Insurance Plan competing with private plans.
This isn't about Republican votes in Congress. We're not gonna get them no matter what gets put forth.
This is about letting Blue Dogs go home and say "we gave you the choice".
This is about making Governors and state legislatures look at their constituents who are growing older and sicker and less insured by the day and telling them they don't give a good god damn. That didn't happen with the stimulus. I don't think it will happen here.
How many tries did it take to pass Medicare? 3-4. LBJ's using JFK's death to promote the bill couldn't get it passed. It didn't get passed until 1965. 5 years after JFK took office.