Monday, February 22, 2010

I see your Tarantino and raise you a non-arcane parliamentary tactic.

I saw on my RSS reader yesterday that Harry Reid has finally grown a spine and decided to start fixing up the House and Senate healthcare bills into to one complete bill that's ready to be passed. There were quotes from Republicans saying that this whole reconciliation thing is absolutely not kosher, and some comments from Democrats who were saying the same thing. But it just so happens that both healthcare bills are budget bills, and so passing them with budget reconciliation is completely legit. Also, reconciliation is not an "arcane parliamentary tactic", and in fact the Republicans used it all the damn time

My newsfeeds also told me that the GOP are now waving their arms and  going "ZOMG SEE?! THE HEALTHCARE SUMMIT IS A TRAP!" and after a trip over to Reddit I saw that the conservative blogosphere is doing about the same thing. They've been doing this ever since Obama decided to have a summit, and I think it's hilarious.

You see, it is a trap - but this isn't because of anything Obama did. This meeting is just him going "Okay guys, show what you've got." If they actually had any new ideas this wouldn't be a problem - but they don't, and they know it. All the stuff on their website is already in the Senate bill, and none of it will fix the real problem. Everything that would is something that they now couldn't support even if they wanted to. Meanwhile some people are wising up to the fact that this healthcare reform stuff sounds pretty good once you understand what it does.

And of course there's the public option.  We've now got twenty senators who want it in the final bill, and it just so happens that this particulat component is the part of the bill with the most public support. If the senate Dems can get their shit together and pass the thing already, then not only does everyone get some health insurance... and as a side bonus the GOP will end up looking like a bunch of paranoid idiots when it doesn't bring about the revival of the Soviet Union.


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