December 2nd, 2009

In Which Pat Leahy Does Something Very Cool To the Insurance Companies, And Joe Lieberman Is Likened To Street Grime

by Philip Baruth

Sometimes your favorite things are wound up inextricably with your least favorite. Like let’s say you spend 4$ for a Ben and Jerry’s Peace Pop, and you drop it on Church Street and even though you wipe it off pretty good, you know there are probably tiny molecules of dirt and even less attractive filth now attached to the tiny molecules of cream and cherry and chocolate. You still eat the Peace Pop, is what VDB is saying.

pat leahy

Which brings us to today’s top story, involving Pat Leahy and Joe Lieberman (Connecticut for Lieberman-CT).

Following the lead of the House, Leahy has introduced an amendment to the Senate Health Care bill stripping insurance companies of their long-standing anti-trust exemption. Who knew insurance companies even had an anti-trust exemption? Pat Leahy, which is the point.

It’s been too long in coming, but finally Democrats have brought a little serious leverage to bear in the fight against terminally high health care costs. And all of that is very much to the good. It’s why Vermont returns Leahy to the Senate: he takes it to those to whom it should be took.

But here’s the strange and slightly gross part: Joe Lieberman has publicly jumped on Leahy’s bandwagon. This is strange because Lieberman is such a reliable water-carrier for the insurance industry, and it is slightly gross because he is in point of fact Joe Lieberman.

What’s going on here?

Long answer: VDB’s take is that Lieberman fully intends to murder the public option; along the way, he’s betting that Harry Reid will strip the bill of the anti-trust exemption, if only to please the likes of Ben Nelson. So by standing four-square with Leahy now, Lieberman can then stand four-square with Nelson on killing the public option, and mitigate charges of insurance industry favoritism.

Short answer: Lieberman is so deeply crooked that he needs three Senate aides to help him screw his pants on in the morning. That is all ye know, and all ye need to know.