CNN reports that the all-important independents loved the speech. Obama sold it. By extension he sold the centrists – in other words, the folks in the middle who will decide all this.
Obama portrayed the far left’s quest for single-payer, and the far-right’s quest for eliminating employer-based coverage, as the extremes, and then portrayed the public option as the centrist choice which is the least disruptive and the least scary.
He offered bribes to the centrist deficit-hawks like Conrad and the supporters of the trigger option, by pushing back the insurance exchanges and the public option for four years. He also placated centrists by stating that the public option must be self-sufficient and would only be available to the folks with no insurance.
More gravy for centrists: the requirement to buy insurance, the ban on cutting Medicare coverage, the HHS test plan for tort reform which can begin immediately, the promise to listen to all ideas, the openness to discussing coops and triggers, the appropriation of McCain’s catastrophic health care plan.
Also, the centrists will have the entertaining spectacle of the Obama team finally coming out to slap around the GOP liars, and making fools of them. First victim: that idiot Boustany. He makes Jindal look like Demosthenes.
Meanwhile, the progressives who were threatening to desert Obama in 2012 were mollified – they said he knocked it out of the park.