I’ve mentioned before that Democrats in Washington would face a major problem once it became clear that they were headed for significant losses in 2010. Specifically, once everyone agrees that the window is closing on major statist change, there’s an incentive for interest groups to fight for their pet cause over others. Environmentalists, high-taxers, health-care-rationers, opponents of traditional values, and other liberal wingnuts might play nicely while they think the pie is growing. But when they realize that the pie is shrinking, everyone wants to grab a slice.

Well, Jimmy Hoffa has decided to grab a fork:

Teamsters President James Hoffa said dropping the so-called public option wouldn’t be a “deal killer” for health-care legislation, signaling a split among leaders of unions that are a core constituency of President Barack Obama.

“We’ve got to find out what’s doable,” Hoffa, head of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” which airs today. “I think it’s important to get something done this time and declare a victory…”

Hoffa said he isn’t willing to compromise on another priority for organized labor, the so-called card-check bill that would make it easier for workers to form unions.

“This is a litmus test,” he said of the Employee Free Choice Act, which is stalled in the Congress after labor leaders had pushed for the measure to be taken up in the first 100 days of Obama’s administration.

Is Hoffa simply going through the motions so he can tell his troops he tried, or is he really going to push for Card Check? While government-run care is clearly in trouble, Card Check was considered to be more or less dead. If he joins in the push to throw dirt on the ‘public option’ coffin, he won’t make any friends on the Left.

Next up on the ‘I want mine’ liberal brigade: are opponents of traditional marriage are getting ready to elbow their way to the front of the line?

Cross-posted to theconservatives.com