Skip to comments.Congressís Secret Plan to Pass Obamacare
Posted on 09/29/2009 8:19:18 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
President Obama and liberals in Congress seem intent on passing comprehensive health care reform, even though polls suggest it is unpopular with the American people. And despite the potential political risks to moderate Democrats, the President and left-wing leadership in Congress are determined to pass the measure using a rare parliamentary procedure.
The Senate plans to attach Obamacare to a House-passed non-healthcare bill. Ironically, nobody knows what that legislation looks like, because it has not yet been written. Yet many members plan to rubber-stamp Obamacare without reading or understanding the bill.
The Senate Finance Committee worked furiously last week to mark up a conceptual framework of health care reform. The committee actually rejected an amendment by Sen. Jim Bunning (R.-Ky.) to mandate that the bill text and a final cost analysis by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) be publicly available at least 72 hours before the Finance Committee votes on final passage.
The following four-step scenario describes one way liberals plan to work the rules in their favor to get Obamacare through the Senate:
Step 1: The Senate Finance Committee must first approve the marked-up version of Sen. Max Baucus (D.-Mont.) conceptual framework. Then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) can say that two Senate Committees have passed a health care bill, which will allow him to take extraordinary steps to get the bill on the Senate floor.
During the mark-up last week, members had difficulty offering amendments and trying to make constructive changed because they lacked actual legislative text and Baucus made unilateral last minute changes. For example, the AP reported that under pressure from fellow Democrats, the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee decided to commit an additional $50 billion over a decade toward making insurance more affordable for working-class families.
Step 2: Sen. Reid will take the final product of the Senate Finance Committee and merge it with the product of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, which passed on a party-line vote in July.
Usually, a bill is voted out of committee, and then the Senate takes up the final product of the committee so that all 100 senators can have a hand in the process. With some help from the Obama administration, Reid will decide what aspects of the HELP and Finance Committee bills to keep.
Step 3: Now, Obamacare will be ready to hitch a ride on an unrelated bill from the House. Sen. Reid will move to proceed to H.R. 1586, a bill to impose a tax on bonuses received by certain TARP recipients. This bill was passed by the House in the wake of the AIG bonus controversy and is currently sitting on the Senate Legislative Calendar.
The move to proceed needs 60 votes to start debate. After the motion is approved, Sen. Reid will offer Obamacare as a complete substitute to the unrelated House-passed bill. This means that the entire healthcare reform effort will be included as an amendment to a TARP bill that has been collecting dust in the Senate for months.
Step 4: For this strategy to work, the proponents would need to hold together the liberal caucus of 58 Democrats (including Paul Kirk who was named last Thursday to replace Sen. Kennedy), and the two Independent senators (Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Bernie Sanders of Vermont). These members will have to all hold hands and vote against any filibuster. Once the Senate takes up the bill, only a simple majority of members will be needed for passage. Its possible one of the endangered moderate Democrats, such as Sen. Blanche Lincoln (Ark.), could vote to stop a filibuster then vote against Obamacare so as not to offend angry constituents.
Once the Senate passes a bill and sends it to the House, all the House would have to do is pass the bill without changes and President Obama will be presented with his health care reform measure. If this plan does not work, the Senate and House leadership may go back to considering using reconciliation to pass the legislation.
Adopting this secret plan will not strike most Americans as a transparent, bipartisan, effective way to change how millions of Americans get their health care.
Brian Darling is director of U.S. Senate Relations at The Heritage Foundation.
The Times will report it as “thousands”...
Hmm! Hmmm! Hmmm! Barack Hussein Obama!
There is no way they hold the 58 Dems and 2 Indy’s together. Ben Nelson D-NE has already said no.
I have no doubt in my former military mind that the ObamaComs will get their CommieCare and we can’t stop them. If they don’t pass CommieCare, they won’t be getting that 50% non-American vote in 2010.
We protested in peace last time. Next time you won't be so lucky!
FRIGGIN NO GOOD TRAITORS!
Tar and Feather the S.O.B.’s.
Obama, you beautiful son of a bitch- WE READ YOUR BOOK
Agreed. Let them play their cards as they see fit.
At the same time, they had better be aware of the coming consequences if they do such.
Personally, I will so deliciously enjoy watching the Democratic Party implode.
Traitors! You are absolutely correct. No other word describes it. And there are penalties for Treason.
The Federal government used to steal money out of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds, but those wells are running dry - especially with recent unemployment figures.
What does this mean? It means that the government needs to create a new GIGANTIC trust fund that they can steal your health care payments from. Please realize, we're talking around 18% of our entire economy.
It the Federal government fails to create this, then they will be in imminent danger of financial collapse. They will need to cut expenses like nobody's business.
Will the government cut expenses? Probably not. If the health care trust fund fails then they will have little choice but to go after our 401K retirement funds - moving them into a Federal government controlled entity for "our protection".
Prepare folks...it's going to happen.
I’ve learned to never trust Nelson. I will make sure he does not get reelected in 2012 even if I have to run against him myself.
To rid the Congress of so many avowed commies and scoietal engineering fascist will require people going to the polls in outrageously astonishing numbers. Think about what keeps sending Maxine Waters, Barbara Boxer, Patrick Leahy, Chuck Schumer, Alcee Hastings, John Conyers, Harry Reid, Barney Frank, etc. back to office time after time ... there aren’t enough alive bodies in those districts to vote these scum out!
I don't profess to know what their real reasoning/plan is, but I am afraid that they don't care if that results. I think they may view it as working in their favor either way. Should the people simply accept it, they are good. Should there be serious civil disobedience, draconian actions suppressing civil liberties will taken. Which I think they also view as in their favor because they have no intention of relinquishing power anyway.
IMO, if they ram it through as described, rebellion should be the response. Unfortunately, I don't believe enough people are at that point. A lot of grumbling and peaceful demonstrations, and that's it.
Vote a bunch of them out next year. BFD. Whatever they enact will NEVER be rescinded. They know that and are willing to risk it. Even if the Republicans were to take control of congress then, the Dems will still have won, because with the takeover of medical care, conservatism will never come back. The Republicans will be nothing more than watered down versions of the Dems, just promising more efficient fascism.
Will the government cut expenses? Probably not. If the health care trust fund fails then they will have little choice but to go after our 401K retirement funds - moving them into a Federal government controlled entity for “our protection”.
CERTAINLY won’t be encouraging for anyone to add to or open a 401K. Where did you read this news?
Off topic, but important, ping.