12 March 2010

What A Way To Run A Railroad!

All right, let me make sure I have this straight.
  1. The House passes a Health Care Bill.

  2. The Senate doesn't like the House bill, and passes their own bill.

  3. The Democrats lose a special Senate election, and now have only (only!) a 59 seat majority, so they decide to try to just pass the Senate bill and send it to President Obama.

  4. But, but, but, the House doesn't like the Senate bill without changes, and so they decide to try a procedure called reconciliation, but want to

  5. Vote on the proposed changes first and then say they approve the Senate bill(!) so they can see if the proposed changes pass before they have to hold their little delicate noses in voting for the Senate bill and then the

  6. Senate can vote on the House changes using reconciliation.

Whew!

Now of course the tricky part is voting on changes to a bill they haven't voted on yet and then voting on the actual bill. So, tricky, in fact, that they can't do it.

Roll Call: Ruling Kills an Option for Moving Health Bill

The Senate Parliamentarian has ruled that President Barack Obama must sign Congress’ original health care reform bill before the Senate can act on a companion reconciliation package, senior GOP sources said Thursday.

The Senate Parliamentarian’s Office was responding to questions posed by the Republican leadership. The answers were provided verbally, sources said.

House Democratic leaders have been searching for a way to ensure that any move they make to approve the Senate-passed $871 billion health care reform bill is followed by Senate action on a reconciliation package of adjustments to the original bill. One idea is to have the House and Senate act on reconciliation prior to House action on the Senate’s original health care bill.

Information Republicans say they have received from the Senate Parliamentarian’s Office eliminates that option. House Democratic leaders last week began looking at crafting a legislative rule that would allow the House to approve the Senate health care bill, but not forward it to Obama for his signature until the Senate clears the reconciliation package.

Huffington Post:Senate Parliamentarian: House Must Move First

The House must pass the Senate health care bill into law before fixes can be made to it through reconciliation, the Senate Parliamentarian told Republican leaders.

Imagine such a thing -- having to pass a bill before they can change it! This is sure to cause consternation with the Democrats, who believe that they should be allowed to do anything, regardless of rules or custom. (Reminds me of the Republicans when they had a majority...)

Never mind the fact that this disappointing stinker of a bill will probably cause more problems than it will solve. The Democrats have blown it on health care, and are now desperate to do anything to show some action on this issue.

They should relax, the GOP's proposals are more worthless than their own.

There is a healthcare crisis in our nation, and our political elites are showing their incompetence in failing to enact rational, sensible health care that covers everyone, seperates coverage from employment, and reduces costs.

The no votes in the House are increasing.

The Hill: House Democrats' 'no' votes are piling up as healthcare reform moves forward

More than two dozen Democrats are expected to vote against the healthcare reform bill that will hit the House floor in the coming weeks.

At least 25 House Democrats will reject the healthcare reform legislation, according to a survey by The Hill, a review of other media reports and interviews with lawmakers, aides and lobbyists.

Dozens of House Democrats are undecided or won't comment on their position on the measure.

And the ones that are voting on it don't want their names on it.

ABC News: House May Pass Senate Bill Without Recorded Vote

As House Democrats press for final passage of a health care bill, a legislative scenario has emerged whereby the House wouldn't have to take a formal roll call vote to endorse the Senate version of the legislation.

Instead, the House would craft a special piece of legislation declaring the Senate bill to have been passed by the House when the House approves its package of “fixes” under the budget reconciliation process. That would spare House members of the perception of endorsing politically explosive Senate deals such as the “Cornhusker Kickback.”

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