Skip to comments.Democrats hunt for healthcare reform votes
Posted on 03/07/2010 5:20:16 PM PST by upchuck
Democrats do not have a firm grip on the votes needed to pass sweeping healthcare reform legislation in the House of Representatives, one House leader admitted on Sunday.
But the White House insisted that its reform efforts were in the final chapter.
Barack Obama has given Democrats a March 18 deadline for the House to pass the Senate version of a healthcare reform bill before he leaves on a trip to Asia, leading to a frenzy of arm-twisting and vote tallying on Capitol Hill.
With previous deadlines missed, veteran Democrats are warning that the legislation must be completed before the Easter recess to avoid a repeat of last summers town hall protests that almost sunk the healthcare bill.
I believe it will pass. Do we have a mortal lock? No. Because people are still looking at some of the changes that are being made, Chris Van Hollen, one of the Democratic leaders in the House, admitted on CNN on Sunday.
The House is shaping up to be a key battlefield in the healthcare fight, since Democrats lost their 60-seat super-majority in the Senate.
With not a single Republican supporting the reform effort, the only option for Democrats now is to have the House pass the Senate version of the bill, then for both chambers to pass a series of fixes to take into consideration the demands of House lawmakers.
But Democratic leaders in the House are struggling to get the 216 votes they need to pass the Senate bill. As many as 12 conservative Democrats who voted in favour of the House bill because it included tough new restrictions on abortion funding are now threatening to vote against the Senate version, which is less restrictive. The House bill passed by 220 to 215 so Democrats have few votes to spare.
This is going to be a discussion and we are going to be engaged in that dialogue for some time until we get it done, said Mr Van Hollen, chairman of the Democratic congressional campaign committee and the fifth-ranking Democrat in the House.
Kathleen Sebelius, Mr Obama's health secretary, said on Sunday it was time for Congress to get the job done.
The bill has passed the House, the bill has passed the Senate with a super-majority. We have comprehensive legislation for the first time, Ms Sebelius told ABC on Sunday. We are in the final chapter, mostly because the American people are desperate.
Tom Daschle, the former Democratic Senate majority leader, underlined the urgency of getting healthcare passed before the Easter congressional recess in less than three weeks.
There really is a life to these legislative projects and weve already extended beyond the normal life [of healthcare] given the array of other challenges and issues we have to face, he told the Financial Times in its View From DC video series. Right now Democrats are back on the offensive and I think they have got to seize it and do the most with it.
Mr Daschle warned that failure to pass healthcare reform could lead to a repeat of the anti-reform campaigning that almost sunk the bill in the summer. There is a lot of fear of the unknown and its pretty easy to generate fear, he said. Every time we do [try healthcare reform], the same predictions and the same dire consequences are announced.
Mr Daschle underlined that it was important also to clear space after Easter for the Obama administration to tackle jobs, financial regulatory reform and legislation to address climate change. We have got to perform we have got to show that we can govern, he said. Weve got to focus on jobs and do as much to recreate the kind of economy that would allow more job creation.
Yeah Kathy, we're desperate all right. Desperately fighting this Marxist POS monstrosity. We're not gonna let you and your thugs take over 20% of GDP and dictate healthcare to us. Just ain't gonna happen.
Tom Dasshole, go screw yourself.
Thank you RINO Newt and Dede for effing up NY-23. That one house vote in NY-23 may mean a lot very soon. Idiot Newt.
I guess this means the fascists are getting ready to send in their union thugs. No, that isn’t the Nawlins Saints in their football uniforms at the White House. That’s the DemocRATS from the House of Reprentatives who voted “No” on CommieCare.
Just what planet are these DIMs living on? People, real people, don’t want this crap. Resist! Resist! Resist! Melt their phones, faxes and computers.
They can’t get 200 votes in the House anymore, much less than 216. And every Dem that votes for this DeathCare bill will hang separately (politically) if they *do* vote for it.
Just as long as we 'trust' Hussein. Who is this clown?
Made where???? Not to the Senate Bill that the House is going to have to pass for ObamaCare to become a reality. Is there some sort of a reconciliation bill being developed somewhere in the dark dungeons of the Capital? Is it being developed in the Senate? Or the House?
I have heard ZERO on this subject in the news. I'll believe it when I hear it. I think that all that is going on is arm twisting and bribery by Pelosi and Reid. Once the deals are made then and only then will anyone be writing a reconciliation bill that will probably never pass if it's brought up at all. This is a joke.
First they have to bribe the Senate to pass this crap, then they have to beg for votes because the American people are demanding universal access to health care when they already have it. Totally delusional...
Baloney! How many in Congress actually respect any freaking deadline the "president" imposes? There is no frenzy of arm-twisting going on; everyone is too busy looking at their own polling internals. Nobody up on the hill cares what BO wants, anymore. They know his "health-care reform bill" is the kiss of death.
Even Pelosi doesn't care anymroe. She's exhausted, look at her. She doesn't want to call a vote because she KNOWS it won't win. Reid is planning his next job lobbying, but not many want him on their side, either.
Congress, both sides, would like this mess to go away. ALL the dems are praying for some new crisis to take BO's mind off healthcare.
THAT'S how desperate Americans are.
This is probably the tenth time I have asked this question but I still dont have an answer.
Article 1 Section 7 of the Constitution says all revenue bills must originate in the House of Representatives. This bill raises revenue but originated in the Senate. What is the story?
This is an all out assault on the American public.
Oh yeah! They want to avoid the town hall meetings that almost sunk the bill. What is it about town hall meetings and “almost sunk the bill” that Kathleen and the administraion don’t understand? WE DON”T WANT HEALTH CARE “REFORM!”
The Senate is irrelevant at this point. The reconciliation thing won’t happen. It is too much a mess.
I’m guessing Obama and Pelosi simply want to get the House to pass the Senate bill. Obama will sign it in ten seconds.
Then the Dems will try to get out the tax on high union healthcare plans over the summer but will be stymied by filibuster.
Then we wait until the November elections to see how big a victory we can get and whether we can gear up to roll any of this back after taking over both Houses. And it all might have to wait until 2012 unfortunately.
Fourth and goal. Stuff these Marxist bungholes for a BIG loss.
Lord, how I wish I could believe that.
Holy bovine creature!
They (the Dem aristocrats in general, and Ms Sebelius specifically) think we lowly peeps are sooooooo stupid as to let them tell us that we are "desperate" for them to confiscate our health plans.
Good health and freedom are too important. Americans will resist socialized medicine by every legal and ethical means available.