Yesterday we wrote about a “Whip List” leaked to the media of Congressional Progressive Caucus members who had confidentially promised party leadership to only vote for a health care proposal that included “a robust public option.”
Scanning the names on the list, most of the Bay Area representatives were accounted for — but not Reps. Pete Stark (D-Fremont) and George Miller (D-Concord). We called their offices to find out why they remained unlisted — and, this morning, we got a call back.
Brian Cook, the communications director for Stark, affirmed that both Congressmen are emphatic supporters of a strong public option in health care and were original sponsors of the bill, HR 3200. In fact, Stark's Ways and Means Health Subcommittee — which he chairs — “voted out” the health care reform bill at 12:30 a.m. this morning (you read that right) and Miller's Education and Workforce Committee — which he, too, chairs — followed suit at around 11 a.m. Eastern time today. Both Congressmen are appearing at a 9:30 a.m. Pacific Time (12:30 Eastern) press conference alongside Rep. Nancy Pelosi to tout HR 3200's progress; the 1990s-era stab at healthcare reform was marked by nothing passing out of committee.