The video clip here leaves supporters of health care reform breathless, while the these spineless politicians now appear surprised by the public reaction. You don't use words like "preference" and "not essential" if you truly believe in something. USA Today:
Robert Gibbs told reporters this morning."The preference is the public option." Gibbs denounced reports that the administration may drop its support for a publicly funded insurance option because of intense opposition. He attributed the reports to a media "overreaction" after the comment by Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that a public option is not "essential" to a health care plan.
Obama himself stoked commentary with his statement Saturday that "the public option, whether we have it or we don't have it, is not the entirety of health care reform."
It doesn't matter whether or not the White House sent the wrong signals:
Democrats made their own position very clear: The public option is essential to any health care plan designed to cover all Americans.