CNA is lying and is hurting workers

Late last week SEIU indefinitely postponed a planned unionization vote for over 8,000 nurses within the Catholic Healthcare Partners (CHP) hospital system in several states including Ohio and Kentucky. The vote for unionization was expected to pass and nurses in these extremely anti-union areas would have won a victory for on-the-job representation and for the entire progressive movement.  So what happened? A rival union decided they knew what was best for these workers before the vote occurred and sabotaged the whole thing. Why? That's what these nurses are trying to figure out now...and the answers are enough to make any progressive's blood boil. More below the fold.

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Russ Feingold: Not really that progressive?

Let me start out by saying that Senator Feingold is a good progressive senator and has done a lot of good over the years. But his recent comments about Senator Edwards are just wrong-headed and a little ridiculous given that the man is guilty of some of the same things.

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Why John Edwards wins in a landslide

Many polls now have shown that John Edwards typically is the best general election candidate against any Republican opponent. And John Edwards supporters (such as myself) have made note of this as part of his appeal. But some might argue that these trial heats are merely an illusion based on people liking Edwards's sunny disposition or even his wonderful wife, and that once he was actually in the general election, people would turn away from him as a flawed candidate. I don't believe this is true and I actually think his general election poll numbers grossly underestimate his actual strength were he to go up against any Republican in 2008. Here's why.

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More good news for Edwards: Steelworkers to endorse

I'll get right to the news first. The largest industrial union in North America is endorsing John Edwards for president.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Former Sen. John Edwards will start his Labor Day in Pittsburgh to accept a presidential endorsement from the United Steelworkers.

Mr. Edwards is expected to appear with United Steelworkers president Leo Gerard at a 9 a.m. rally at the Mellon Arena, the kickoff site for the city's annual Labor Day Parade.

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Edwards changes the game...Again

Roger Simon had his debate post-mortem in the politico this evening. In it he ranked John Edwards's performance as the best of the bunch, mainly because of his strong populist theme. He picked up on a subtle shift in Edwards's tone that is yet another signal that Edwards is again changing the debate and will be pushing Obama and Clinton to the left in the coming weeks. More after the jump.

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Why does Edwards continue to perform well in GE matchups? (w/poll)

Take a look at the latest head-to-head match-ups from Rasmussen,

Giuliani 47% Clinton 44%
McCain 48% Clinton 42%
Clinton 47% Romney 44%
Clinton 47% Thompson 44%

Edwards 47% Giuliani 45%
Edwards 48% McCain 41%
Edwards 55% Romney 29%
Edwards 53% Thompson 32%

Giuliani 51% Obama 39%
Obama 46% McCain 42%
Obama 49% Romney 37%
Obama 47% Thompson 44%

Now given that (1)Edwards has stagnated somewhat (with a possibe recent recovery) in the national Dem primary polls and (2) Obama usually does much better amongst independents, and (3) Edwards has the highest percentage of people who think he has no or little chance of winning the election (out of the top three Dems, see the latest Fox poll), then the question is, why is he still winning the general election math-ups? Shouldn't Obama be beating Giuliani because theoretically, his support from independents would be dampened in primary polls and thus should be increased in national polls. Why is Clinton still not beating Giuliani or McCain (although sometimes she does beat McCain)? Given the love that Dem primary voters have for her shouldn't that be translating into an electoral victory?

My hypothesis is that Edwards still does best in general election match-ups because of the southern factor. He's still able to pick up support from people who would rather vote for "one of their own" than a slick Yankee like Giuliani or Romney. But it's still puzzling as to why Obama's numbers don't go up more with the addition of independents in the polling numbers. Maybe it's just still early and people aren't paying attention yet.

Any thoughts on this?

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Obama releases his health care plan.

Barack Obama released his health care plan today. At first blush it seems like John Edwards's plan except there's one national health market, individuals are not required to purchase insurance, and catastrophic costs are covered by the government. I'm sure there's more subtle differences but I having trouble picking them out now. It'd be great if an Obama supporter would write up his health care plan like I did a few months ago.  

I'd especially like some info on the differences between John Edwards's regional health markets and Obama's national health exchange. Does Obama give individuals the same market power as John Edwards?

Update: And it looks like it gets the big thumbs down. Man I really had hopes for this. But this timidity in the Obama campaign to actually reform the big problems of failed markets in our society is getting to be very frustrating.

Update again: Sorry for not including the full plan. It wasn't available when I first wrote this and I thought the 6 page fact sheet was sufficiently detailed that you could get the gist of the plan (I assume that was the intent of the Obama campaign as well). I didn't get much else out of the 15 page plan, but feel free to have at it and fill in the blanks.

Update again again: What do you guys think of this quote by Ezra Klein?

The Obama folks called back to further clarify their position on the Health Insurance Exchange Markets. Larger businesses could, if they chose, put their employees into the exchange market, at which point the employees would be able to pick from the menu of private and public options offered therein. There wouldn't be incentives to do this, but if a company so chose, they could sign up with the exchange market on a risk-adjusted basis (risk-adjusted because you don't just want companies with older, sicker workforces taking advantage of the system). That's significantly better than barring larger companies from using the public options, though somewhat less audacious than the Edwards' plan, which actually encourages companies to switch over to the public option. To make this discussion somewhat more explicit, Obama's plan has a public option, but is not a backdoor approach to single-payer. [emphasis mine]
Do you agree with what Ezra is saying? If so, is that a problem for you or do you like Obama's approach?

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A request for Obama and HRC supporters

I am a John Edwards supporter. I've listened to all the candidates speak and have listened to multiple speeches by HRC and Obama. Obama supporters in particular (probably since there are more of them) have asked me to check out his policy positions and read his speeches on his website to find out where he stands on issues. I have done all that in the spirit of learning and so I can come to a reasonable judgement on who to support. So now I have a request for all HRC and Obama supporters. I would like you to give John Edwards a chance and to do it by listening to an interview he just did.

Click here to listen to John Edwards on WBUR's On Point. The interview lasts about 50 minutes and it's very good. I'd like to hear people's opinion on it and if they learned anything new by listening to it. I do feel that many Obama and HRC supporters formed opinions of Edwards in 2004 (as did I) and have never really given him another look since then. So, in the spirit of elevating discourse and getting to know all the Democrats (because one of our candidates is going to lose so many of us will have to support someone else anyway) I'd ask that you give this a listen.

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What do Obama supporters hope to accomplish?

Chris just wrote a piece on why he likes movements. A good discussion ensued as to why some people support the Obama 'movement' and others (such as myself) support the Edwards 'movement'. And it led me to thinking.....

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John Edwards releases his health care plan

Today, John Edwards released his plan to provide universal health care to all Americans. If you're too busy to read the 7 page summary you can check below for my summary and comments.

The full plan is available here.

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