Maybe we are about to find out the difference between a liberal and a socialist-progressive ..CSPAN CALLS OBAMA'S HAND
Obama's C-Span Problem
Brian Lamb has put President Obama on the spot. Lamb is the CEO of
C-Span, and today he wrote a letter to the leaders of Congress asking
them to allow cameras in the room for the final negotiations on the
health care bill. Lamb wrote:
President Obama, Senate and House leaders, many of your
rank-and-file members, and the nation's editorial pages have all talked
about the value of transparent discussions on reforming the nation's
health care system. Now that the process moves to the critical stage of
reconciliation between Chambers, we respectfully request that you allow
the public full access, through television, to legislation that will
affect the lives of every single American.
Indeed, this was one of Obama's signature promises on the campaign trail:
It's hard to get more explicit than that.
But that was then. Today, when asked for the 3rd time whether President Obama believes that the "standard" he set during the campaign for transparency on health care negotiations is being met by the current process (which now appears to include bypassing the formal conference process), White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs gave a flaccid but telling response.
"I do not believe the American people have lacked for information on what's in these bills - the political and policy arguments around different people's positions - I think that's been well documented," Gibbs said.
With all due respect, the reporter did not ask Gibbs for his appraisal of what he thinks the public does and does not know about the health care bills. Rather, the question is very simple: will President Obama honor his campaign pledge and demand that the final health care negotiations are televised on C-Span? Judging from Gibbs' response, the answer is an obvious "no."