"Oh, Max Baucus, what have you wrought?" Rachel asks.
A very reasonable question indeed.
The bill is nothing more or less than the health insurance industry's wet dream, what Wendell Potter says should be called the Insurance Industry Profit Protection and Enhancement Act.
Baucus did not waste hundreds of hours of time with the Gang of Six haplessly trying to create a bill that the Republicans could get behind, especially seeing as how they're not going to get behind it anyway. What Max has wrought is the creation of his corporate masters in the health insurance industry.
The delay, with its dire consequences for the peace of summer, was deliberate. The August crazies had plenty of time to do their part in scaring the American people away from real reform.
The Republicans were there so that Baucus would have plausible deniability along the lines of "the Republicans made me do it," which is politically less damning than "I did it for my corporate masters."