"I really want to get to yes," said Lieberman, who caucuses with the Democrats. Unless the public-option language is dropped, however, he said, he probably will align with Republicans to block the measure.There is also mention of the trigger approach being proposed by Sen. Snowe, the loan GOP affirmative on the Senate Panel:
Other moderates said they are undecided on the opt-out plan. "I'm skeptical about what Senator Reid has proposed," said Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.). Like Lieberman, she opposes a government-run insurance program that would compete with the private sector. But Landrieu gave Reid slightly more reason for optimism, noting that she will "stay open to a principled compromise."
Some moderate Democrats are more comfortable with the "trigger" approach that Sen. Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) has advocated, saying that a variant of a public plan is more likely to win 60 votes. Under Snowe's approach, a public plan would be available only in states where private companies do not offer policies at broadly affordable rates.And it is beginning to look more like Sen Ben Nelson of Nebraska may be a greater obstacle to holding the caucus together then Sen JoeMentum:
Reid's more immediate concern may be Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), who, unlike Lieberman, has not pledged to vote for debate to begin. Nelson told reporters that he wants to see the bill and a cost estimate from the Congressional Budget Office before deciding. Although he has not ruled out supporting a public option, Nelson said he wants to make sure it would not become a "government-run, big-government insurance" company.The Public approach to a competitive option has always been a stickler for me. Co-ops and private, non profit participants that states like MN has may be a more reasonable and cost effective direction to go.
Ideas are still being tested, and it is clear congress is playing a media game to find out which ides, and even which words, will gain the most traction. If nothing else, this has been an interesting case in the legislative process.