The Democrats are clearly in for bad news in November unless something changes and speeches aren't going to be enough. In particular, if after spending a year trying to get a health-insurance reform bill through Congress, the whole project dies now because the Democrats have only 59 seats in the Senate--a luxury the Republicans haven't had since 1923--many voters will conclude that the Democrats spend all their time bickering with each other and are incapable of governing. Everyone in Washington knows very well what the Democrats have to do, namely, get the House and Senate to stop squabbling with each other over abortion and the Medicaid limit and come to a compromise bill that 50 Democratic senators and 218 Democratic representatives support. Then the House has to pass the Senate bill intact followed by both chambers passing the compromise bill polishing the rough edges, in the Senate via reconciliation, even if that means firing the Senate parliamentarian, Alan Frumin, and replacing him with a Democrat. Some Democrats believe they will be better off in November with no bill than with this bill, but if that were true, minority leader Mitch McConnell would long ago have given Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) permission to vote for cloture in order to pass the bill and thus saddle the Democrats with an awful bill they would have to defend in the midterms. But McConnell knows that some aspects of the bill (like forcing insurance companies to accept uninsured sick children) will kick in the day the bill is signed and are wildly popular, thus giving the Democrats something to campaign on.
Monday, January 25, 2010
The Best Statement on What Dems Need To Do NOW About Healthcare
From my favorite national blog, election projection website electoral-vote.com: