Jonathan Cohn
Senior Editor

Hillarycare And History
February 05, 2008

Today's David Brooks column, which reexamines Hillary Clinton's record during the 1993-94 health care fight, offers an important reminder of the antipathy she has generated not just among many average Americans but also among some members of Congress.  That, by itself, raises important questions about whether she could really master Washington better than Barack Obama could -- a claim she and her supporters frequently make.   But what about the underlying reality that Brooks describes: Did Clinton really botch things back then as much as Brooks -- and pretty much everybody else -- seems to th

How To Endorse Obama -- And Criticize Him
February 05, 2008

DrSteveB, as he calls himself, writes a smart blog for DailyKos that is mostly about health care.  Today, he explains his reasons for supporting Barack Obama.  By itself, that's hardly unusual.  I've seen endorsements all over the web today, mostly for Obama although some for Clinton.  What interested me in this one -- and why I think some readers might find it useful -- is that he makes a case for Obama while recognizing the legitimate concerns about his candidacy, particularly when it comes to health care.     DrSteveB -- who is apparently a real physician -- also gives a nice plug for sin

Health Care Reformers -- Don't Despair!
February 04, 2008

We're going to take a moment from the debate about individual mandates in health care reform -- a topic to which I shall return soon enough -- to bring you some unambiguously good news.  If, that is, you think universal health care is a good idea. Today the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) announced it would be launching a $75 million election-year campaign on behalf of universal coverage.

Harry And Louise -- They're Back!
February 01, 2008

A quick follow-up on last night's debate over health care reform -- and then a new development. 1.

Paging Dr. Gupta -- America Needs You!
January 31, 2008

Right after the debate, CNN decided to run an hour-long special on health care by their medical correspondent, Sanjay Gupta M.D..  I wasn't going to watch it, mostly because of low expectations.

Who Won? The Democrats Did.
January 31, 2008

Unlike the focus group on Fox, the viewers in CNN's group broke ever so slightly for Clinton.  According to CNN, they all came in as undecided voters.

The Last Word (hopefully) On Mandates
January 31, 2008

For those missed the first few minutes of the debate, an early question from Jeanne Cummings went to Barack Obama: Why, she wanted to know, was his plan superior to hers if estimates suggest that 15 million people would remain uninsured? Readers of this space have heard about this debate aplenty.  Most of those who care to form an opinion on it have; those who don't have moved on.  And that's just fine.  Personally, I'd be happy to say nothing more about it. But I've just received a press release from the Obama campaign suggesting that 15 million figure isn't reliable.  It cites articles notin

Medical History
January 30, 2008

Barack Obama's promise to move beyond partisan bickering has obviously given a lot of people hope. But, for those of us watching from the left, it's also been a source of concern. Oh, sure, it's nice when everybody in Washington gets along. But Obama's determination to embrace would-be adversaries sounds just a little naive, given the scorched-earth strategy Republicans and their lobbyist friends have waged against liberals in the last 15 years. Serious environmental regulation? Closing corporate tax loopholes? Major ethics reforms?

Why John Edwards Won
January 30, 2008

John Edwards ends his presidential candidacy today. This is not surprising news: He finished third in every single contest except for Iowa, where he narrowly beat Hillary Clinton. Going forward, he doesn't have the money or the organization to compete with either her or Barack Obama. And, most important, Democratic voters seem content with choosing between the two front-runners—as, in fact, they should. Both Clinton and Obama are capable of running formidable campaigns and, if elected, both could lead successfully. This is hardly a knock on Edwards's political talents.

Why Kennedy's Endorsement Matters
January 28, 2008

How will Ted Kennedy's endorsement affect the presidential race? The debate is already well underway. Skeptics note that endorsements don't have the same weight they did a few decades ago, when more voters took their cues from party leaders. Al Gore's endorsement of Howard Dean four years ago certainly didn't deliver the nomination. But Kennedy's progressive record on economic issues, not to mention his family name, might give him unusual clout with older, working-class white voters -- ones who, until now, have strongly preferred Hillary Clinton.

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