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Last Tuesday, Senator Gillibrand came out as one of the 4 original signers on the letter to Harry Reid to pass a public option through reconciliation.

This weekend, Harold Ford penned his own letter via his "unofficial" blog warning Dems to be wary of the reconciliation process.

Join me below to see Ford's shift back to the right.

Senator Gillibrand has been an active proponent of a public option throughout the health care debate. It makes sense then that when the Democrats began considering reconciliation as a potential method for getting it done, that Gillibrand would be right in the mix of things.

What doesn't make sense is why Gillibrand's would-be primary challenger, Harold Ford, is warning democrats to back-off.

Ford, since his emergence in New York politics, has done everything possible to recreate himself as a stalwart liberal, rather than as the Blue Dog Congressman he was while representing Tennessee.

Ford's recent warning towards Senate Democrats regarding reconciliation seems to be more in keeping with his original, more moderate, politics.

Ford says

"Apparently, there's a push underway in the Senate to pass health care reform with a public option through reconciliation, which is a unique Senate procedure created largely to ensure passage of necessary budget legislation.

I want the President to sign a good health care bill - and preferably one with a public option - as soon as possible. However, I would urge the Senate to be careful substantively and politically with the reconciliation approach, which would allow for Democrats to pass a reform bill with only 51 votes."

Rather, Ford proposes working more closely with Republicans in drafting a bi-partisan, public-option free bill. Why would a bastion of the left, the image in which Harold Ford has attempted to re-create himself, say throw away the public option? Maybe it's because Harold Ford really isn't the New York progressive he's painting himself as.

Meanwhile, Senator Gillibrand continues to push for the public option, as the liberal base of the country continues to throw their support behind her.

Most recently, the PCCC and DFA launched a website fund raising for Senator's Gillibrand and Michael Bennet of Colorado. Both are original signers of the letter to Majority Leader Reid, and both face opposition in the 2010 election.  

So far, Bennet has raised over $64,000 and Gillibrand over $37,000. Let's get those totals up even higher for two truly progressive Democrats, and let's start seeing Harold Ford for what he really is, a Blue Dog from the south who is out of his element and out of touch with the Democratic party.

Originally posted to jbhill on Mon Feb 22, 2010 at 09:34 AM PST.

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