Wednesday, October 21, 2009

NV-Sen: Reid in Trouble If No Public Option in Health Care Bill?

Perhaps so, says Research 2000. Yikes.

While Nevadans support the creation of a public health insurance option by a 54-39 margin, Nevadans also think Harry Reid is a "weak leader" by a 52-24 margin. And while Reid's numbers against the two main Republican candidates have improved a little over the last Research 2000 poll ordered by Daily Kos, Reid is still losing by 5% to both Sue Lowden and Danny Tarkanian.

Still, don't let the numbers against the Republicans fool you. Harry Reid will do just fine and win next year, but only if he gives reason for the Democratic base and progressive-leaning independents to support him.

Nancy Pelosi doesn't seem to have a problem sending a strong public option down to the House floor for an up-or-down vote. This House of Congress hasn't been fighting over whether there will be a public option in the health care bill, but over how it will be modeled and funded.

OK, OK, so the Senate is a different ballgame than the House. I get that. Still, Harry Reid can do plenty to get a good public option in the merged Senate bill. After all, he is part of the negotiating team.

His office did reassure me on Monday that he is just doing that, and there's no reason yet for me to doubt Reid's commitment to a good health care bill with a real public option. I just hope that he'll soon produce the results we're looking for. Not only will it be good for Nevada's working families, but it will also ensure his own reelection next year.

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