themcglynn.com

22 Aug

Montana Republicans Love Max Baucus

And the fate of the public option may very well rest with Baucus.

Daily Kos and Research 2000 are out with an interesting poll of likely voters in Montana. Kos flags the approval numbers of Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) — the chair of the Senate Finance Committee, from which just about everyone in Washington is eagerly awaiting a health care reform bill that is unlikely to contain a government-run public insurance option.

Do you approve or disapprove of Senator Max Baucus’ actions on health care?

  • Approve  Disapprove Not sure
  • All 42             44       14
  • Dem 34          55       11
  • Rep 49           38       13
  • Ind 41            42       17

In case you missed that, the poll found that on the issue of health care, Baucus is more popular among Montana Republicans than Democrats — by a margin of 15 points.

That’s not all.

Do you favor or oppose creating a new public health insurance plan that anyone can purchase?

  1. Favor    Oppose    Not sure
  2. All 47        43       10
  3. Dem 78     15        7
  4. Rep 23      66       11
  5. Ind 48       41       11

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), the ranking Republican on the Finance Committee, has drawn a clear line in the sand against the public option, but Baucus continues to insist that his committee will produce a bipartisan bill. Which party does it look like Baucus is catering to?

It’s probably also worth pointing out that earlier this month, Gallup found that Montana Democrats have a two-point party identification advantage over Republicans in the historically red state.

And the fate of the public option may very well rest with Baucus.

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