Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Closing my eyes and crossing my fingers

Well, it's better than all that. The Senate got 60 votes to proceed to debate on health care, although 4 of those votes (Landrieu, Nelson, Lieberman, Lincoln) were votes to begin debate, not votes to approve the current state of the bill. Three of these have threatened to filibuster the final bill if it contains a public option, although all but Lieberman have been more cagey in their statements. Snowe (R-ME) opposed this stage, but her positions are increasingly well known. She may end up being more persuadable than Lieberman.

Why is this a good sign? The next scheduled vote is the one that matters: cloture, ending the GOP filibuster. Joining the Republican filibuster on this central bill is the ultimate act of betrayal and noe that these four will be loath to engage in, no matter what they say. They saw what happened to Joe Wilson. They will get worse from the left if they do the equivalent to giving Obama the finger. What these four have really signaled is their willingness to be persuaded or - more realistically - to be bought off. This suggests the bill really can pass.

What remains to be seen is what the amendments will be and what the angrier Democrats on the left will demand as their price to stay on board. It irritates rank-and=file dems to no end that a few of their colleagues, by claiming to be moderates, can extract concessiosn for the same vote that the rank-and-file does for "free."

With the Republicans (except maybe Snowe and Collins) exiting the debate altogether except to throw darts, the action is entirely on the side of the Democratic caucus. This is what many of us talked about last year. Reaching across the aisle is not a relevant skill; building consensus on the Democratic side ofthe aisle is. If you want to know why Obama let Pelosi and Reid write the bill, this is why: Rahm knew ex ante that the Republicans were never going to participate, so all the supposed Obama bipartisanship was irrelevant. Too bad. The Republicans have allowed the birther/deather/teabagger minority to steer their ship. Hopefully, to steer it into a pile of rocks. When the economy improves - and it will do so - they will discover that it was only 10% unemployment, not their own criticisms, that were weighing down the President's popularity.


Bert Q. Slushbrow, Sr. said...

What I fear will happen is that the bill we are getting, which is not the bill I wanted and which does not go nearly far enough in addressing the health care issue, will be an expensive, relatively useless thing that ends up playing right into the hands of those opposed to real health care reform which will then be hung around the necks of the Democrats pushing any further progressive change into the distant future, if ever.

I'm not especially pleased with this at all and I think it represents a victory for the health care industry more than anyone else.

Raised By Republicans said...

If we can get a public option under whatever restrictions or limits, it will be huge. Then it will be easier from that point on to gradually modify the limits and restrictions.

That's why the GOP is apoplectic about it. They know the long term implications of even a compromise version of the public option and they don't like it.

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