Tom Carper

Conservative Democrats Strike Again (Updated)
September 14, 2011

If you’ve read this blog lately, you’ve read a lot of criticism of Republicans for talking economic nonsense, placing their political fortunes ahead of the country’s good, or some combination of the two. But sometimes Democrats, particularly conservative Democrats, do the same things. And now is one of those times. Mary Landrieu and Jim Webb – I’m looking at you. An article by Manu Raju, in Politico, quotes the three senators criticizing Obama’s jobs proposal.

Good News for Democrats Where? Delaware!
September 13, 2010

Among Tuesday’s primaries is a suddenly red-hot contest in usually mild-mannered Delaware, where Republicans have been counting on picking up Joe Biden’s old Senate seat since the day Congressman Mike Castle announced for the race. But now Castle is suddenly looking vulnerable to a right-wing uprising which, in turn, could make Democratic candidate Chris Coons the front-runner going into November.

The Energy Bill Could Be A Disaster, If Utilities Get Their Way
July 15, 2010

This post might get a tad wonky, but bear with me, it's important. Politico is reporting today on a critical development in the Senate energy-bill talks. Remember, a cap on carbon pollution isn't dead yet. There's still a strong possibility that Harry Reid will include a cap-and-trade system that just covers electric utilities in the final climate bill. But before he can do that he needs to get utilities on board.

Some Smart Ideas On Transportation
May 12, 2010

One of the more surprising aspects of the mammoth Senate climate proposal (that's a big honking pdf, by the way) released today was the bit on transportation. Kerry and Lieberman took a very different tack on this subject than the House did—and it's a stunning improvement. For starters, the cap-and-trade program would generate about $7 billion in revenues from selling carbon permits to oil companies and refineries. That money would then get split evenly in three ways: 1) One-third would go toward federal grants for big transportation projects.

Living With Another Public Option Compromise
December 02, 2009

As you’ve probably read or heard by now, the public option debate seems headed back to an old compromise, albeit with a new twist or two. This clearly isn’t good news. But I’m not sure it’s awful news, either. In the two weeks since Harry Reid rounded up sixty votes to begin debate on his health reform bill, it’s become clear that he probably can’t count on the same sixty votes to pass it. The single biggest reason is the public option. Reid’s bill included a relatively weak version of the public option. The plan would negotiate rates with providers, rather than use Medicare rates.

Senate Dems to Obama: Um, a Little Help Here?
October 26, 2009

After a weekend of furious activity, Democratic leaders in the Senate think they are close to getting the votes they need in order to pass an "opt-out" version of the public option. But they feel like President Obama could be doing more to help them, with one senior staffer telling TNR on Sunday that the leadership would like, but has yet to receive, a clear "signal" of support for their effort. The White House, for its part, says President Obama supports a strong public option, as he always has--and that, as one senior administration official puts it, the president will support the Senate le

Can States Do the Public Option?
October 01, 2009

The latest wrinkle in the public option debate (via Politico initially) is a proposal that comes from Senator Tom Carper, the Delaware Democrat that sits on the Finance committee. According to the proposal's latest draft, which Carper's staff is circulating but--I'm told--Carper himself is not really hawking yet, the idea is to let states set up their own alternative coverage options. Those options include starting a non-profit co-operative, opening up the benefits plan for state employees, or, yes, starting a real public plan. There's no trigger, at least in the document I've seen.

Hardball 101
January 24, 2005

It is getting increasingly difficult to find any Democrat who backs President Bush's plan for partially privatizing Social Security. Private accounts are now officially out of favor even among New Democrats, the most obvious source of potential administration support. The Democratic Leadership Council and a new centrist policy shop called Third Way both recently announced their opposition. Over in the House, many have been eyeing Adam Smith, the leader of the New Democrat Coalition, which has 67 members in the House.