Despite Obama Promise Not To, Democrats Gearing Up To Use Budget Reconciliation To Pass Health Care

by Rob at SayAnythingBlog
October 28, 2009

In 2007 Barack Obama promised not to use a “50+1” tactic to bypass a filibuster of health care in the Senate and would instead seek bipartisanship.

Now, however, things have changed. There’s more bi-partisan opposition for Democrat health care “reform” efforts than there is support, and Harry Reid is getting ready to throw Obama’s promise under the bus:

Cobbling together the Senate’s 60 Democrats on procedural votes has emerged as a likely strategy for Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). It involves a controversial legislative tactic called reconciliation that could require only a simple majority of 50 votes for final passage. That would allow the chamber’s Democratic centrists to support the party on procedural votes and still vote against the final product.

McConnell and Cornyn said they believe Reid is eying just such a strategy, comparing it to 2004 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry’s (Mass.) famous phrase that he initially supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq before he opposed it.

“It’s appropriate to make the point at the outset that a vote on cloture on the motion to proceed to this bill will be treated as a vote on the merits of the bill,” McConnell said.

Setting politics aside for a moment, it would be a terrible idea to pass so-called “health care reform” this way. It’s already a rancorous issue, and jamming it through the Senate without the full debate and scrutiny of that most deliberative of legislative bodies is a guarantee that many Americans are going to feel forced into this.

We’re talking about a bill that would significantly change the way most of us live our lives and get our health care. Is it really too much to ask that they not jam it through using short cuts?

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