As I write this, I don't know whether President Barack Obama and his Democrats will end up pretending to abandon the public option aspect of Obamacare, but I do know that if they do, it will only be a matter of time before they resurrect it because that's where their heart is.
That's why, among other reasons, neither Blue Dog Democrats who oppose socialized medicine nor Republicans should consider compromising with left-wing Democrats to pass a bill. If they do, Obama will eventually -- and probably sooner than you think -- achieve his goal of nationalized health care.
Don't think I'm advocating Republican obstructionism. I would like nothing more than for conservative congressmen to quarterback real market reforms to the health care system. But if you understand liberals at all, you know that they'll never agree to market-based solutions for ideological reasons and because an expanding dependency class is their most essential power source.
Just watch conservatives propose an expansion of health savings accounts or an eradication of coverage mandates, including those prohibiting crossing state lines to buy health insurance, or tort reform or changing the tax code to eliminate the incentive for employer-provided health insurance and see what happens.
Obama will be all over state-run TV telling Americans that uncompassionate conservatives are going "Katrina" on the poor again. Democrats are the true obstructionists because they'll stop, at any cost, the only reforms that could reduce health care costs without rationing, creating waiting lines, or decreasing choice and quality of care.
If Republican legislators succumb to their political addiction to compromise for the sake of getting something passed, no matter how odious, they'll be laying out the red carpet of inevitability for socialized care. Once government gets its foot in the door, more government control is unavoidable.
But we needn't quibble over images in a crystal ball. We have Obama's statements of intent on the matter, as well as those of former DNC Chairman Howard Dean, who is back to popping off again in the foot-shooting spirit of Vice President Joe Biden.