Lindsay Beyerstein of the Media Consortium interviews Dr. Howard Dean, former DNC chair and 2004 presidential candidate.
Dean says thinks it's likely that the Democrats will try to pass health care reform through budget reconciliation, a tactic that would enable them to get a bill through the Senate with a simple majority and circumvent a Republican filibuster. He thinks reconciliation would result in a better bill because i) the Democrats would write the bill with no Republican input, ii) it's easy to use reconciliation to pass an expansion of Medicare. Dean favors expanding Medicare for two reasons. First, it's a well-run program that delivers good value. Second, it's politically essential for the Obama administration to deliver concrete benefits before the 2010 election. If the Dems pass a plan that has yet to be implemented by 2010, Dean argues, the GOP will make political hay out of public uncertainty and apprehension.