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Bill Frist, former Senate Republican leader, majority leader, and kitten murderer, shows us what "leadership" looks like -- from the sidelines of the debate.

Were he still in the Senate, "I would end up voting for it," he said. "As leader, I would take heat for it. ... That's what leadership is all about."

This is not to say that Frist is entirely happy with everything that is in the bill.

For one thing, he doesn't think it does nearly enough to bring costs under control. In his view, it does not fundamentally change the incentives that providers now have to provide more care, rather than better care. "There is really nothing to bend the cost curve," he says [...]

Frist also faults some in his own party for injecting alarmism into the debate. "Clearly, the death panels and public plan arguments have been overblown," he says. Frist noted that Republicans themselves voted for a Medicare prescription drug bill that would have established a version of a public plan--with the government negotiating directly with drug companies--if private-sector competition had failed to materialize.

There's no way in hell Frist supports this while in the Senate. None. But I shouldn't be so negative -- as a former top leader in the GOP and a physician, his characterization of the public plan is remarkably refreshing. Here we have a conservative Republican admitting that the hysteria over the public plan is "overblown" -- something even some Democrats are finding impossible to do.

And this speaks to a recurring theme of ours in the past few months -- "bipartisanship" doesn't necessarily mean getting Republican votes for the legislation, it's building support among all political factions around America. In polling, the public option consistently gets support from about a quarter of Republicans, and now we can add the former Senate majority leader, physician, and conservative stalwart Frist to that tally.

Congressional Republicans are looking to score political points, not fix problems. At least in Frist's case, that's no longer a concern.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:37 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  My thought exactly. (6+ / 0-)

    "Sure ya would, Mista Frist. Sure ya would."

    I mean, I actually believe someone like Bill Clinton when he claims he had a change of heart on gay rights, but when have Republicans ever believed in the ability of government to help people? They've been assaulting that idea for so long, even some liberals believe them.

    •  ...when have Republicans ever believed... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZenTrainer, James Kresnik, BrighidG

      " the ability of government to help people?"

      The best point Markos makes is the distinction between Republicans in Congress and Republicans in America.

      This is a theme that we should really be hammering. Bipartisanship should be measured by how diverse the support is in the electorate, not in the elected. On that measure the Public Option is incredibly bipartisan.

        • Beck, Hannity, O'Reilly FREAK SHOW Stickers •••

      by KingOneEye on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:47:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think the Senate doesn't belong to the public (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      trinite, Matt Z, BrighidG, LaughingPlanet

      anymore. And so, it should be disbanded. If not, it's going to keep screwing up the public badly.

    •  No way he would vote yes on this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      brown american

      They are all cowards while in office. the talk is always of doing things for the people etc etc etc. He would have voted this down and been the poster child for Republicans on this. Both sides of the aisle are liars. They are not there to serve the people, maybe thats their idea going in but they are all so woefully corrupted in a matter of minutes. I think that is why we need term limits. After awhile we would get to real people with a conscience and not manufactured ideas of what congressmen and women should look like or be like. I am sick of all of them!!!!!!

    •  Despite his insincerity, it's a sad state of (0+ / 0-)

      affairs when Harry Reid can't make the same claim. He runs away wimpering like a little kid if there's even a hint of heat...

      "I still say a church steeple with a lightning rod on top shows a lack of confidence."

      by logsol on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:22:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yes those not interesting in scoring political (5+ / 0-)

    points with right wingers are for the public Republicans and Blue Dogs who do not hold political office.

  •  Wow... (5+ / 0-)

    I trashed him every second of his Senate tenure but I'm impressed.

    "We're all working for the Pharaoh" - Richard Thompson

    by mayan on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:40:15 PM PDT

  •  Frist!!!! (9+ / 0-)

    Oh wait, not, more like 5th.

    I hope these comments get made into a DNC ad.

    Live from the ochlocracy of California.

    by Attorney at Arms on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:40:35 PM PDT

  •  They always tell the truth... (12+ / 0-)

    ...when their political careers are over.

    You can be an intelligent conservative. You can be an honest conservative. But you can't be an intelligent and honest conservative.

    by Bush Bites on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:40:41 PM PDT

  •  Today's Republicans make Bill Frist (7+ / 0-)

    a moderat by comparison, that is quite an achievement. Bless his heart, though, for saying so out loud.

    We have only just begun and none too soon.

    by global citizen on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:41:25 PM PDT

    •  Tennessee senators are weird. (4+ / 0-)
      •  Cause their "base" is scary (0+ / 0-)

        TN senators are not your batshit crazy Repubs.  They are your rich, comfy  Episcopalian type Repubs who may nevertheless have at least a little bit of sanity.  They tend to have businesses and are able to "get" certain things, and they're not into scorched earth strategies. Alexander, Corker, and yes Frist too, are not as rightwinger as they pretend.

        But they have to run to the right, or they get primaried out. They have to pretend to be wingnuts to get in the door. The gun extremists and Talibaptists and other religious crazies control the Repub party down here at the grassroots.  And we are talking people of the worst sort of looniness.

        My sis-in-law worked with Frist on various issues when she used to work for the govt. and said she found him always super professional and cooperative, including to Dems.  This was BEFORE the Bush administration came to power.

  •  In the Republican party of 2009 (5+ / 0-)

    Bill Frist is a thoughtful moderate.

    Holly Near and Jamie Farr were really tight until Glenn Close split them up.

    by mswaine on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:42:09 PM PDT

  •  The repubs in power do not want (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karac, TomP, oxfdblue, MichaelNY

    Obama to have any success.  Pass healthcare and Obama's approval will go through the roof.  

    "There are no more battleground states. Just battle won or battle winning!" Me

    by givemhellHarryR on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:42:18 PM PDT

  •  This is definitely a "and monkeys might fly out (5+ / 0-)

    of my butt moment" for Frist.

    Politicians should wear uniforms like NASCAR drivers, so we can identify their corporate sponsors.

    by CTMET on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:44:38 PM PDT

  •  Trash him all you want and you're right, he would (8+ / 0-)

    not have voted for this if he were still in the senate, the fact that he is coming out now, a crucial time for this bill, is pretty remarkable.

    Repent. The end is extremely f*cking nigh.--28 days later

    by voroki on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:44:47 PM PDT

  •  Kitten murderer?? (0+ / 0-)

    I hadn't realized that Bill Frist was a kitten murderer!!  

    What's the story?  Does anyone know the details?

  •  Well cut off my legs and call me Shorty (0+ / 0-)

    if Bill Frist didn't actually say something good!

  •  Why do some of these fools (3+ / 0-)

    only find their conscience AFTER they leave Congress?

    I guess they're afraid they're going to hell for allt he human misery they've caused.

  •  Frist would do whatever W. told him to do (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dkosdan, math4barack, MichaelNY

    Any suggestion to the contrary is inconsistent with the historical record.

    If he were still there with Obama as POTUS he could have been the one guy rich enough and unconcerned with his political career to do the right thing, but I'm skeptical.

    Sanctimony thy name is Joe Lieberman.

    by roguetrader2000 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:47:54 PM PDT

  •  It might (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Luetta, Terra Mystica

    be interesting to get Mr. Frist on one of the weekend shows and see what else dribbles down his chin.

    Common Sense is not Common

    by RustyBrown on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:48:01 PM PDT

  •  Sorry for the cynicism, but could it be..... (5+ / 0-)

    ...that his Family's huge healthcare company holdings (Humana, etc.) sway them to support it because of the megabucks they'll make under the Baucus Bill?

    •  Or he was just jonesin' for some time in the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      spotlight.  DeLay's dancing, The Newter is a regular talking head, and Armey's trying to puppetmaster a coup.  What about him?

      Excellence is to do a common thing in an uncommon way. Booker T. Washington

      by conlakappa on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:21:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Dr. Frist, Rush Limbaugh on Line One, stat nt (5+ / 0-)

    Sanctimony thy name is Joe Lieberman.

    by roguetrader2000 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:49:37 PM PDT

  •  Frist must be burned. (0+ / 0-)
  •  Big effin' deal (0+ / 0-)

    Bill Frist, scion of a political/medical/complex fortune worth a billion dollars wants to guardedly  "support" a reformist agenda.

    He HAS to support it because the present economics are  at a breaking point for all inside the industry EXCEPT the finance arm, the private insurers.

    And those bastards have driven the gravy train off a cliff.

    Hre is out there pimping his book describing his conservative credentials, his "humanitarianism" and his charity work in Africa.

    About time after the hundreds of mnillions raked in from suffering caol miners and millions of others too broke to afford care in his private mega complex of the most expensive, unaffordable care on earth.

     It is a delicious irony that the former Senate majority leader admits the attacks from his part are patently absurd, speaking as adoctor and a business leader.

    cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

    by Pete Rock on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:50:46 PM PDT

  •  Another example of how the debate has shifted. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dkosdan, BrighidG

    The supporters of public option began bringing their A game in late August and we have changed the debate.  The President did a great job slamming the GOP during his joint address, and the GOP opposition has not been able to do much since.

    If the Democrats pass health care reform and with the economy likely to look better 12 months from now than it does today (and it looks better today than it did 6 months ago) the Democrats are poised not only to maintain their majorities but will also probably exchange a few red state Dems for blue state Dems and have an easier majority to work with.

    The challenge for Dems is to make a serious effort at addressing the demand for a public plan.  If they handle this challenge (and it really isn't a challenge if people look at the math) then the Dems will indeed be in a very strong position in 2010.

    Alternative rock with something to say:

    by khyber900 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:51:09 PM PDT

  •  Arent there a few former Senate leaders (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    working on healthcare? Wasnt there some group, including Bob Dole, Daschle, and Howard Baker who are focusing on the issue? I wonder if Frist is also one of them.

  •  I'm sure Frist was feeling left out, as he hasn't (4+ / 0-)

    had an opportunity to apologize to Rush Limbaugh in a while, but this gives him a reason.

    Either that, or he's learned that he doesn't have to lie all the time now that he's a private citizen again.

    It'll be fun watching the likes of McConnell, Boehner, etc. taking Frist down a peg over the weekend (He was always a crappy senator and a traitor to the party...that kind of shit).

    It's often said that life is strange. But compared to what? --Steve Forbert

    by darthstar on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:51:28 PM PDT

  •  I want to find the MISSING 14 - link (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    superfly, kfred, BrighidG

    There are an awful lot of natural numbers. 46 happens to be the exact number of Progressives who signed a letter which said that they would not vote for HR 3200 which passed the Energy and Commerce Committee of the House.

    Is it also the new whip count ? which dropped from 60 originally?

    From Chris

    But Grijalva noted that 46 members recently signed a letter pledging to vote against the centrist plan. In the numbers game of the House, that is significant, because Republicans are expected to unite against the healthcare bill. So if 39 Democrats oppose the plan, it wouldn't get the 218 votes needed to pass. There are 52 Blue Dogs, as well as many other centrist members not in the coalition.

    Wonder what the CENTRIST PLAN IS ?  That's from the Energy and Commerce bill when the public option's tie to Medicare Rates was severed to get the bill out of committee. It was done, if you remember, to placate enough Blue Dogs to get that bill out of committee. And it worked.

    That's from the same page, as Chris' article. And there are 46 of them.  

    The Hill reports

    Pelosi moves to center on public option
    By Mike Soraghan and Jared Allen - 10/01/09 07:17 PM ET

    Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is shifting to the center on a government-run public health insurance plan, warming to a version that is being supported by some Blue Dog Democrats.

    Pelosi’s recent public statements and private conversations indicate her willingness to move away from the more liberal proposal, which she had been promoting as being more cost-effective. The centrist view was negotiated with Blue Dogs to move the bill out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

    Liberals want a public option that is tied to Medicare rates plus 5 percent. Blue Dogs and other centrist Democrats want rates to be negotiated individually with providers.

    But Grijalva noted that 46 members recently signed a letter pledging to vote against the centrist plan.

    This last sentence should look familiar. It's the same as the first sentence that Chris quoted.  

    So, they are undoubtedly different whip counts. Thus, (60-46 =14), we didn't really lose 14 Progressives from their pledge to vote against a health care bill without a public option. So, Chris doesn't need to feel discouraged about losing the commitments of 14 Progressives since that never actually happened. It also appears to be unproductive to attempt to determine who the missing fourteen are since they are not really missing.

    And in case, you think I am the only one who realizes that this is what happened:

    comment by fwiffo

    The whip count is a bit befuddled   (0.00 / 0)
    It seems like the earlier count was 60 who would vote against a bill without a public option at all. This count appears to be those who would vote against a bill with a specific weakened public option. The number who would vote against a bill with no PO is likely still 60 or maybe more.

    So, that's probably 46 who will settle for nothing less than Medicare+5%, and 14 or who want a public option but will settle for one that has negotiated rates.

    But frankly, even the blue dog version in the house with negotiated rates is a lot stronger than what will come out of the Senate (likely to be the flimsiest of fig leaves.)

    desmoinesdem agrees

    that's how I read it   (0.00 / 0)
    These 46 are against the compromise in HR 3200, I think. The original 60 were against a bill with no public option at all, or only a triggered public option.

    Chris realized his mistake


    Progressive Block Larger Than 46
       by: Chris Bowers
       Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 16:20
       Actual reporting taking place here...

       I have done some checking on whether Representative Grijalva's claim in The Hill this morning that 46 members will vote against a bill without a public option represents the final count from the Progressive Caucus's whip count from three weeks ago

    There are no missing 14. That way people won't keep trying to find them by making phone calls.

    •  OT-but addresses MYTH passed on by mcjoan (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Chris Bowers, firedoglake and now is on Greg Sargent's page.

      It started with either Chris or firedoglake.

      And I am trying to correct it.  It makes Progressives look weaker when one says that we lost 14 commitments. And we didn't as the parent post clearly shows.

      And since mcjoan posted it, I felt it needs to be corrected.

      Via Jane, The Hill is reporting that the number of Congressional Progressives standing firm behind a no robust public option, no bill pledge has slipped to from 60 in July to 46.

  •  While I'd LIKE to believe him (5+ / 0-)

    ... that he'd vote for HC reform... I don't for a second.

    Any Republican wanting to get re-elected has to vote against anything Obama does... no matter what.

    So if Frist was still in the Senate, I got 5 bucks that says he'd be just as big of a rabid asshole as Boehner... if not more. They don't give a rat's ass about anyone but themselves. If they did, we wouldn't be having this fight.

    This ain't no party. This ain't no disco. This ain't no foolin' around!

    by Snud on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:52:11 PM PDT

  •  Just remember he voted for the Medicare Plan D--- (5+ / 0-)

    while it gave us prescription payments----it also did not allow for negotiated prices with Pharma.  A sell-out to the Big Boys.

    "The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die."

    by Phil S 33 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 02:56:54 PM PDT

    •  if he liked Med Ad, he'd LOVE the Baucus bill.nt. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Phil S 33, dkosdan, conlakappa
    •  Medicare PlanD (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      brown american, Phil S 33, ZenTrainer

      Medicare Plan D which Frist voted for is a sellout program. The donught hole kicks in pretty fast, and I'm not a huge meds user.

      I spend $75.50 a mo for AARP Plan D. This gives me drugs that are generic for $7.00. Fine. But there are many drugs that either are NOT covered by Medicare [therefore not eligible], and drugs that are not generic and cost anywhere from...$28, $40 to $300.

      Here's the catch. The Cap [ limit] allowed is $2775.00. but the  price AARP and the price I pay are added together. It can take less than 6 mo to reach $2775. When you have reached $2775 your drug insurance stops. It's in the donught hole. I continue to pay premiums, but must pay for all drugs myself with no reimbursement until I reach close to $5500 spent. This really means? That not even by Dec have I met that amt and therefore I am only insured for 6 or 7 mo.  This is a screw job.
      Tom Delay rammed it through in midnight vote. After an unheard of 3 votes until he wrangled the votes he needed.

      •  morris1030---check your email (0+ / 0-)

        "The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die."

        by Phil S 33 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:57:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I have been dealing with the doughnut holes (0+ / 0-)

        since I work with elderly. Most of them are in this hole by the middle of the year.
        The sad part is that many of them keep telling me that they don't want  any reform and they don't want the govt handling their healthcare.
        All I can say is ,Oh God forgive them they don't know what they are talking about!

        American dream is a myth!

        by brown american on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 07:50:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Oh no, there's a trigger for negotiated prices. (0+ / 0-)

      Haven't you noticed all the cheap Canadian drugs on the market?

      Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

      by CA Berkeley WV on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:11:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This Is a Nice Gift (4+ / 0-)

    I am not sure I believe he would vote for health reform if he were still in the Senate since his opposition to the Clinton plan was a key issue in his 1994 race.

    However, this helps us when the crazies start screaming about it.  

    Question - Will Rush and Beck make him walk it back?  Should be interesting to watch.

  •  Wasn't Terry Schaivo a beneficiary of Fristcare? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZenTrainer, math4barack
    Didn't he look at her at a distance and perform brilliant medicine?
  •  I heard him on TV (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TN yellow dog, dkosdan, math4barack

    He was debating Howard Dean on Charlie Rose show. He came across pretty well, very well informed. Much more intelligent than any other Republican I have seen.

  •  I guess Frist ain't running for President (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    at least as a Rethug....

  •  I hear Frist issued his endorsement ... (5+ / 0-)

    ... after diagnosing video footage of the Finance Committee hearing which he spent an hour or so looking at last night in his office in Nashville.

    Slap it. Shoot it. Kaboot it.

    by adios on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:00:06 PM PDT

  •  I don't know... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TN yellow dog

    There's no way in hell Frist supports this while in the Senate.

    Frist's family runs a giant chain of hospitals.  I'm sure they get better deals from insurance companies than most, but that doesn't mean he can't appreciate the economics behind health care reform.

    5% above Medicare sounds like a pretty good deal for a no-haggle, no-hassle, Medicare-style reimbursement system.  Bill knows this, and I'm betting as the heir of a billion dollar empire, he would be as receptive as any other doctor or hospital to health care reform.

    We might be seeing a very different debate if Bill Frist was in office.  I mean, take a look at how popular off-shore drilling was with the Florida Senators at the end of the Bush Era.  Or what the Southwest House Reps like Tancredo thought of the Bush Immigration overhaul.  The Republican Party is incredibly easily swayed by corruption and demagoguery.  But that cuts both ways.

  •  Your negativity and skepticsm are warranted (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Forget what he would do on the Senate, if he is so confident in his conscience, then he would say this from a national platform, like a few media appearances and maybe a speech to conservatives.

    Time will tell but I have not noticed Frist on the teeve tubes,  although I don't watch Fox so Im not 100% sure.

    If this statement carried any water it would be tearing through the headlines, lets see if this gets any bigger than Time mag.

  •  Why wouldn't he support BaucusCare? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Isn't he a lobbyist for Insurance & BigPharma.  BaucusCare is nothing but a HUUUUUUUUGE windfall for these industries at the expense of the TAXPAYERS.

  •  Bill Frist Supporing This Plan?? (0+ / 0-)

    Not likely.

    I would never belong to a club that would have me as a member--Groucho Marx.

    by DaveS002 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:01:14 PM PDT

  •  The Republican party in 11 words (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mike Taylor, math4barack

    Congressional Republicans are looking to score political points, not fix problems.

    "Mr. President, I'm not saying we wouldn't get our hair mussed." General Buck Turgidson

    by muledriver on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:01:20 PM PDT

  •  By trotting out Bill Frist, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    conlakappa, math4barack

    the republican party is attempting to improve its image, without having to commit to better public policy. I agree that he would never support a public option if he were still in the senate, but he can sit on the sidelines and try to make the republican party look a little more reasonable.
    In a way it's still encouraging, because the republican party is obviously starting to worry about its image, or we would never hear Bill Frist pretend to defend the idea of a public option.

  •  Perhaps he's trying to provide some cover... (3+ / 0-)

    ..for Republicans who want to vote for what their constituents want, but are bullied into voting against it by the party?

    I also wouldn't discount that he stands to make some money if reform passes as well.

    I think it will be interesting as the public continues to support the PO to see if more outside the Beltway begin to speak out.

    "Most people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so." ...Bertrand Russell

    by sebastianguy99 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:04:18 PM PDT

  •  So is he a good witch now or still a bad one? eom (0+ / 0-)

    Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. -susan ertz

    by graycat13 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:08:06 PM PDT

  •  Frist: Reminder of the failure of "triggers" (0+ / 0-)

    "Frist noted that Republicans themselves voted for a Medicare prescription drug bill that would have established a version of a public plan--with the government negotiating directly with drug companies--if private-sector competition had failed to materialize."

    And of course no private sector competition materialized, drugs costs in US are 20% higher than Europes for the same drugs yet no public plan was ever "triggered" to control drugs costs.

    Just as no "trigger" will ever be "pulled" to establish a "public option" if US health care costs, already 100%  higher than Europe's health care costs, continue to go even higher.

    Frist also points out the political trap the Democrats have set for themselves by advocating a complex plan that increases US costs instead of decreasing costs.

    "The Republicans will go wild," using the start-up difficulties as a tool for fundraising and for making their case in the next election..."

  •  I could probably make a diagnosis... (0+ / 0-)

    ...of his sincerity from here.

  •  Thanks for reminding me that Frist was a kitten (0+ / 0-)

    murderer.  I will never forgive him for that.

    "We're fools to make war on our brothers in arms"

    by pekkla on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:10:22 PM PDT

  •  Wonder what has gotten into Frist lately (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    A couple of weeks ago, he told a group he traded in his old Suburban for a Prius under the Cash for Clunkers program.

    Now, he is supportive of health care reform.  This sure ain't the same Frist I had representing TN until 2006.  Hmmm.... curious, isn't it?

  •  It doesn't matter what Frist would have done (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sandy on Signal, TN yellow dog

    were he still in the Senate.  The fact is that he's not, so we should use what he said to build our case for a public option.  I'd like to see him make the rounds on television and help us get what's best for the American people.  

  •  What is the genesis of the cat thing? (0+ / 0-)

    As I hate cats... so well... I'd like to know the details.

    There's something attractive about invincible ignorance... for the first 5 seconds.

    by MNPundit on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:14:46 PM PDT

  •  This happens with many former politicians.. (0+ / 0-)

    Once out of office, they will tell you what they really think.

    "Once spirit was God, then it became man, and now it is even becoming mob."

    by progresso on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:16:35 PM PDT

  •  Obama has lost his way, or was full of shit... (0+ / 0-)

    ...all along. Because I remember a version of this argument being made by his supporters during the primary campaign:

    ..."bipartisanship" doesn't necessarily mean getting Republican votes for the legislation, it's building support among all political factions around America.

    In the campaign, people were saying that Obama wasn't reaching out to elected Republicans in Washington but reaching out to the American people in both red states and blue states, which would cause red-state voters to pressure the Republicans representing them to go along with more of his agenda. That, supposedly, was also part of the justification for having Rick Fucking Warren give the invocation at the inaugural.

    But that isn't what we've seen. What we have seen is an effort to kiss the ass of every elected Repuke in Washington and little or no effort to go over their heads and call them on their obstructionism.

  •  First, check his wallet, Frist doesn't do a thing (0+ / 0-)

    without being paid for it.  He's a humanitarian like Rush is clean of drugs.

  •  Republicans Coming to Their Senses? (0+ / 0-)

    Nah!  A momentary lapse of "reason".

  •  And he'd really support any bill (0+ / 0-)

    that would reimburse cardiologists who do diagnosis of neurology cases by watching an edited videotape.
    Evil bastard can rot in Hell as far as I'm concerned.

    Even Roy Rogers would oppose the Trigger Option.

    by jazzmaniac on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:32:07 PM PDT

  •  Overblown? (0+ / 0-)

    Clearly, the death panels and public plan arguments have been overblown

    Err, no, Bill: They were fabricated. The only way to avoid overblowing them would have been not to blow at all.

    Even though our dream is not yet completed... we are not quitters... and we are not through. Ty'Sheoma Bethea

    by Nowhere Man on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 03:52:50 PM PDT

  •  The Gee Oh Pee defines bipartinsahip (0+ / 0-)

    as POTUS signing the bill they want.

    Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices--François-Marie Arouet

    by CA Berkeley WV on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:01:56 PM PDT

  •  Putting aside the idea (0+ / 0-)

    that he would be staunchly against any reform if he were still a senator, I think it would be wise for us to use these sort of comments (and Lindsey Graham's) to our advantage, rather than trash the source.

    I don't need a list of the evil things Frist has done, so don't go there.

    All I'm saying is when the wingnuts start their shit, rub their noses in these comments.  It helps when they feel isolated from the "statesmen" of their party.

    "The revolution will be no rerun, brother. The revolution will be live" Gil Scott-Heron

    by marknspokane on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:02:16 PM PDT

  •  In what kind of country can a man (0+ / 0-)

    convicted of mutilating homeless cats simply move on and become a transplant surgeon? Are no records kept here and no minimum moral standard for persons in whom we place such trust? Frist then rose to become majority leader of the U.S. Senate. How was this possible? Bill Frist's dissecting pets he adopted by deceit should have placed him on the police watch list. Not in medical school. And not in the U.S. Senate. What is wrong here, anyway?

    When an old man dies, a library burns down. --African proverb

    by Wom Bat on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:08:37 PM PDT

  •  I don't know (0+ / 0-)

    much about Frist as it's only relatively recently that I've started to follow US politics in detail.

    Don't know whether he would vote for it, what is angle is, why he's talking now or really particularly care.

    I didn't read the linked article as my brain got stuck on this part...

    For one thing, he doesn't think it does nearly enough to bring costs under control. In his view, it does not fundamentally change the incentives that providers now have to provide more care, rather than better care. "There is really nothing to bend the cost curve," he says

    Regardless of whether I think this is true or not. I'll admit I don't know. My reaction had nothing to do with it's actual content. My reaction was 'wow this sounds like an actual statement that has something to do with the actual policies in the bill.  Like a real, actual opinion about something concrete, where if I wanted to figure out for myself whether it had any validity I'd actually have to do some thinking about what is actually IN the bill.  And THIS from a real, live Republican!'

    Then I sat back and contemplated how pathetic it is that it was so surprising.

  •  Note to Democrats (0+ / 0-)
    If you are to the right of Bill Frist, you have issues.  I am talking to you Jim Cooper.  

    "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

    by justmy2 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 04:58:42 PM PDT

  •  Cheap and easy. (0+ / 0-)

    The only question I have is: "Why is Frist trying to rehabilitate himself NOW?  

  •  If frist supports (0+ / 0-)
    It is obviously to far to the right.

    "Republicans drove the country into a ditch and now they are complaining about the cost of the tow truck"-Jim Cornette

    by justmy2 on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 05:08:35 PM PDT

  •  Another example of the GOP... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TN yellow dog

    ...discarding the intellectual faction.

    Frist is no Hegel, but he has enough sense to recognize an unsustainable business model.

    All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for a handful of Democratic Senators pay exclusive attention to the lobbyists of the Medical Industrial Complex.

    by Egalitare on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 05:25:26 PM PDT

  •  In a pig's ass! (0+ / 0-)

    What he's really saying is that he's ready to get back into politics.

    "They had fangs. They were biting people. They had this look in their eyes,totally cold, animal. I think they were young Republicans."

    by slouching on Fri Oct 02, 2009 at 05:44:17 PM PDT

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