This time in the U.S. Senate.
Max Baucus, who guided the Affordable Care Act through the Senate–and later called its imminent implementation a “train wreck,” will not be running for re-election.
As I discuss in my book, the mentality of “pass it now at any cost” has many implications. Many in the House of Representatives lost their seats because of the ObamaCare vote in 2010. Baucus, who can see the writing on the wall and wisely bows out, is part of the ACA’s continuous fallout.
Obama owes Obamacare to Max. It would not have cleared the Senate without his skilled leadership. Now, Baucus has nothing to show for this imminent train wreck.
This dynamic is all-the-more interesting in light of a recent meme that Obama is not good at twisting arms, and demanding payback for handing out favors. From the Times:
After more than four years in the Oval Office, the president has rarely demonstrated an appetite for ruthless politics that instills fear in lawmakers. That raises a broader question: If he cannot translate the support of 90 percent of the public for background checks into a victory on Capitol Hill, what can he expect to accomplish legislatively for his remaining three and a half years in office?