Last August I told you that Barack Obama's health care reform is dead, and it still is. Senators and Nelson Lieberman have stated that they will not vote for a "public option" of any kind. I suspect that many Democrats are secretly pleased, despite outrage among the base.

The progressives are, of course . . . well, livid is probably too weak a word. At this point it's hard to see them getting to sixty votes on anything. Frankly, I'm not sure that a majority of legislators want them to get to sixty votes on anything. Every time health care makes the news, its poll numbers drop further, and at 54-38 against, it's already dangerously close to "Republican landslide if you pass it" territory. Outside of coastal enclaves, Democrats cannot win the next round of elections with no one but their base. And independents, already against the plan, especially hate partisanship. This makes it especially unhealthy to pass a bill they don't like on a straight party line vote.

Health care reform is still dead, as it has been for many months. It will not happen. It has been, however, an exciting way to waste Congress' time and has prevented the Democrats from passing many potentially harmful bills that they could have mustered the votes for.

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