(Audio via The Nation)
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Blanche Lincoln must be real desperate at this point, and this article by John Brummett in Arkansas proves Blue America was right on the mark by taking her on when most people never heard of her back in 2009.
On the day that Lt. Gov. Bill Halter formally accepted the draft of national left-wing activists and announced he would run in the Democratic primary against U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln, a person close to Lincoln told me Blanche was going to get tough.
There is a difference, though, between getting tough and getting bogus.
Lincoln’s first salvo was dishonest. The second was a smear…read on
Brummett rips her badly, but accurately. The Nation then catches her lying in radio ads to the African American voters in her district on health care. She has the audacity to say that she stood tall on health care.
Describing Arkansas Democrat Blanche Lincoln’s position on healthcare reform as a flip-flop doesn’t do justice to her political flexibility. During a year of contentious debate on President Obama’s signature domestic priority, she’s been all over the map.
In July 2009, she offered her support for Obama’s healthcare plan and his inclusion of a public insurance option. “Individuals should be able to choose from a range of quality health insurance plans,” she wrote in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. “Options should include private plans as well as a quality, affordable public plan or non-profit plan that can accomplish the same goals as those of a public plan.”
Yet two months later, after the public option came under fire from insurance companies and Tea Partiers, Lincoln changed her tune. “I would not support a solely government-funded public option,” she said on September 1 in Little Rock. “We can’t afford that.” She vowed to filibuster any healthcare bill that included the public option she once supported, even though 56 percent of Arkansans backed the provision.
Now, in an attempt to court the Obama voters she’s repelled throughout the past year, Lincoln is running ads on African-American radio in Arkansas claiming she “stood with our president to pass healthcare reform.” The ad continues: “Even though the Tea Party and insurance companies attacked Blanche Lincoln, she never abandoned our president, nor you.” Listen to the ads below.
“Who is Blanche Lincoln trying to fool on healthcare?” says the narrator. “Here’s the deal: she didn’t stand up to the special interests, she worked for them. She sided with those Republicans who tried to kill President Obama’s reforms unless insurance company profits were protected. Insurance companies and HMOs rewarded Lincoln with more the $800,000 in campaign cash…Senator Lincoln, my people aren’t fooled. Bill Halter is the one who’ll stand up for us.” In addition to the healthcare ads, Lincoln has been touting her “A” rating from the NAACP, which the organization’s Arkansas chapter takes issue with. “If I had to grade her even on health care reform she definitely wouldn’t get an A,” said Dale Charles, president of the Arkansas NAACP. “She’d maybe get a C minus.
She deserves absolutely no support from her African American constituents. She voted for the Senate bill only after extreme coercion and we’ll never know if she would have voted for the final conference bill. She didn’t vote for the reconciliation fix, so I’m thinking probably not. In any case, she was an enemy of the kind of health care reform that her Democratic constituents preferred and made it more difficult to pass anything at all every step of the way.
She certainly does have chutzpah, though, in trying to send this message under the radar. I suppose she thinks that her Republican rivals won’t use it against her because it’s playing on black radio stations. Good luck with that.