December 1, 2009

WHEN PASSAGE OF THE BILL IS A THREAT AGAINST YOUR OWN MEMBERS, YOU KNOW YOU'RE IN TROUBLE:

Threat of reconciliation hovers over centrist Dems in healthcare vote (Alexander Bolton - 12/01/09, The Hill)

Talk about using budget reconciliation to pass healthcare reform in the Senate has faded from public view, but Democratic leaders continue to hang the threat over centrists in private. [...]

[Ben Nelson (D-Neb.)] wrote in an op-ed last week that he voted for the motion to avoid the prospect of Reid bringing healthcare legislation to the floor under budget reconciliation, a process with special procedural protections originally intended for legislation to reduce the deficit, such as tax increases or spending cuts.

“By following normal procedures — allowing much debate, many amendments and even an opportunity to consider a complete alternative to the new bill offered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid — we have avoided for now bringing up healthcare legislation by using the tactic known as budget reconciliation,” he wrote in an op-ed appearing in the Omaha World-Herald.

Under reconciliation, healthcare legislation could pass with a simple majority after a strictly limited floor debate. But lawmakers would have to carve up the bill to eliminate provisions that do not clearly raise revenue or cut spending and therefore would be subject to parliamentary objections. Reid has said that he could pass a government-run health insurance program, known as the public option, under reconciliation.


Moderates are the enemy of the Democratic Party.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 1, 2009 3:23 PM
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