This [health care reform] bill is, at this point, hideously unpopular. I'm pretty sure you've got a bunch of senators who would really, really love not to vote for it. Ultimately, the moderates had a very good alternative to negotiated agreement, and the progressives didn't, and that was crystal clear from Day 1. That meant the progressives were never, ever going to get very much. This was not a failure of political will or political skill. It was the manifestation of a political reality that has long been obvious to everyone who wasn't living in a fantasy world. If progressives decide that the lesson from this is that they haven't been sufficiently demanding and intransigent, they are going to find themselves about as popular with the rest of America as the Bush Republicans, and probably lose their party the House next year.
She's right about the fate of health care reform, although she doesn't have the faintest reason why. She thinks the nation doesn't want health care reform when it does, but she must know deep down that drug companies, insurance companies, hospitals and doctors didn't want national health care and that is why it didn't have a chance. Like many people of limited intelligence, McArdle thinks in terms of her people winning versus her enemy winning. The larger issue of the health of the nation and its citizens is far, far over her head.