Dems to Self-immolate via Reconciliation
Brian Darling of the Heritage Foundation has moved the entire health care world from refitting weapons and/or R & R to DEFCON Two with these two posts, here and here. Darling is not only one of the few real operational experts on Senate Rules, and he is a highly effective operative for the good guys. If Darling says the Dems are going to try it, they will. DRUDGE is now on board with his front page all-caps headline: BACK FROM THE DEAD: DEMS VOW TO RAHM THROUGH HEALTHCARE.
Add to this that Senator Reid just gave an interview saying Congress will pass ObamaCare in 60 days, and FireDogLake is reporting the Leadership is on-board for the reconciliation strategy. Also, FireDogLake is pushing the public option to be included in reconciliation. TIME and Washington Monthly are reporting that Reid intends to use reconciliation to insert the public option. Furthermore, former White House Communication Director for Obama, Anita Dunn says ObamaCare will pass Congress by November, just after Obama made another push for ObamaCare at his Nevada town hall.
It is prudent to ask, at this point, what happened to pivoting to the jobs bill or to financial reform? Apparently, the degree of difficulty presented by these two “easy” bills has forced the White House to pivot away from them, and back to the ObamaCare. (This, of course, makes the passage of ObamaCare less likely because even the easy bills have become hard to do for the walking-wounded Dems.)
What is really going on? Are the Dems that crazy to think that their attempt at using reconciliation will help them politically? Or are they just delusional, and cannot accept it is over for ObamaCare, and do not have the discipline to turn to something the public actually wants, like deficit reduction?
The Dems cannot accept the defeat of ObamaCare and will try reconciliation because Majority Leader Reid is desperate for liberal support for his failing re-election effort; Speaker Pelosi is genuinely irrational about ObamaCare, and the President believes that the entire Dem Congress should politically self-destruct to save his bill.
Mainline Dem strategists like Charlie Cook call it a “massive miscalculation.” Cook’s interview is a MUST WATCH here, at the National Journal.
Meanwhile, today the Hill is reporting that the GOP says the Dems do not have the votes on the Senate floor. (This intelligence is accurate.) But the Dem Senators will not embarrass Senator Reid by contradicting him publicly.
Add irrational to desperate and you get the Dems attempting to pass ObamaCare via reconciliation.
But the tough problems remain. Like abortion. The whole idea of forcing the country through months more of health care, to make the bill more liberal, and then send it back to the House floor where you would force Members in an election year to walk the plank again on abortion, ObamaCare, Medicare cuts, tax increases, the individual mandate, health benefits for illegal immigrants, while spending $2.5 trillion to do it is, quite simply, nutty.
So, let the Dems try reconciliation.
They will find themselves in another three or four month political valley of death on ObamaCare. And they will still not pass the bill.
The country is not in danger of ObamaCare passing via reconciliation.
The country is, however, in danger from politically desperate and irrational leaders who are intent on the political equivalent of self-immolation. Herein is the drama from no-drama-Obama.