The public option is the Mylar balloon floating over the rocky landscape of health care reform — no one knows when it will land, if it will land, if there is a boy inside, or if anyone even wants the boy inside. Some people look at this balloon and feel fear, others feel a deep sense of cynicism, others just want to believe there will be a happy ending and a movie deal. But who really knows what will happen?
Americans remain sharply divided about the overall packages moving closer to votes in Congress and President Obama's leadership on the issue, reflecting the partisan battle that has raged for months over the administration's top legislative priority. But sizable majorities back two key and controversial provisions: both the so-called public option and a new mandate that would require all Americans to carry health insurance.
However, one resident of Washington, DC — it's unclear if his opinion was included in this poll or not — seems to think that a public option is okay, but not necessarily necessary…
Obama "will obviously weigh in when it's important to weigh in" on the possibility of a public option, chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said. Added Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett: "He's not demanding that it's in there. He think it's the best possible choice."
Right. And if all you have to go on is your belief that a public option is the best possible choice, and data showing that a majority of Americans also believe it's the best possible choice, you wouldn't want to make an unreasonable demand like that.
Tags: Barack Obama, Health Care, Polls, Washington Post