UPDATE, 11:15a: As if skepticism if not outright denial among Senate Democrats about Reid’s claim of a compromise reached between libs and mods weren’t enough, now add MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann’s “stick a fork in it” lament last night…

As Politico reported, “Olbermann… said… that losing the pure public option is a “total and unmitigated defeat without a war.”
11:04a: Senate Democrat Majority Leader Harry Reid gave a grand show Tuesday, December 8, via a public statement and press release that “moderate… progressive members of our diverse caucus… tonight… have come to a consensus.”

The only problem is he was bluffing. Bear in mind 4 of the 10 senators brawling behind closed doors over the controversial public option are Feingold, Landrieu, Lincoln, and Nelson.
Here were their statements – made after Reid’s big announcement…

  • Sen. Russ Feingold: “While I appreciate the willingness of all parties to engage in good-faith discussions, I do not support proposals that would replace the public option in the bill with a purely private approach.” (Feingold press release, December 8)
  • Sen. Mary Landrieu: “There’s no specific compromise. There were discussions.” (“Landrieu, Lincoln: No ‘compromise’ made on health bill,” The Hill, December 9)
  • “According to Sen. Blanche Lincoln, sending the bill to the CBO was about all the 10 senators agree to do.” (“Landrieu, Lincoln: No ‘compromise’ made on health bill,” The Hill, December 9)
  • Sen. Ben Nelson: “My position has not changed…. I’ve drawn a line in the sand…. I haven’t signed on to the proposal…. [and on accepting Reid’s request to work on a compromise] “I’m anxious to get the best bill… even if I can’t be supportive of it.” (“Nelson still withholding cloture vote,” Lincoln Journal Star, December 9)
  • Also bear in mind Reid needs 60 votes, including all 58 Democrats

  • Sen. Roland Burris: “If we have to get 60 and it comes back and it does not have a public option in it, I will not vote for it. It will still take 60 votes to pass it…. If we don’t pass a meaningful health care reform bill in this session, we are all going to hang separately…. Understand that I have drawn a line in the sand. I’m not much of a dealmaker in this regard.” (“Burris threatens to filibuster health care without public option,” The Huffington Post, December 9)
  • … and both Independents

  • Sen. Joe Lieberman: “”My opposition to a government-run insurance option, including any option with a trigger, has been clear for months and remains my position today. Regarding the “Medicare buy-in” proposal that is being discussed, we must remain vigilant about protecting and extending the solvency of the program, which is now in a perilous financial condition.” (Lieberman press release, December 9)
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders: “I understand that the leadership wants to move this bill forward as quickly as possible. I understand that. But in my view, we have a lot of work in front of us…. In my view, the only way we are going to provide comprehensive, cost-effective, universal care is through a single payer.” (Congressional Record, S.12698-9, December 8)
  • … or a Republican or 2…

  • “GOP senator: We will unanimously oppose newest health care compromise,” Huffington Post, December 9
  • Moral: Don’t believe a word Harry Reid says.

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