March 19, 2010

Health care pep talk

Closing in on Sunday's probable Congressional vote on Obamacare, thinks are looking a little dicey. As so many pundits have said, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would not be calling a vote unless she had the votes lined up. While it might be a close vote, it doesn't make much sense for her to call a close failure. Meanwhile the President has cancelled an overseas trip to stay in D.C. - clearly the momentum among Democrats has swung back to the President on health care.

But it's never over until it's over. As the Dylan Thomas poem suggests, rage against the dying of the light. Jamming phone lines doesn't appear to be swaying any of the Democrats who need to be swayed. They are prepared to fall on their swords to 'save' the Obama Presidency. But again, that' no reason to roll over and accept the 'inevitable'. There's other places this can be foiled. True, with each passing hurdle it gets easier for health care to pass. And it's also true that the if GOP campaign on an agenda to repeal it, they would need House and Senate gains that are unlikely achievable in a single election. But by 2012, two Congressional election cycles combined, it could be enough.

And then there's the Constitutionality of "Deem and Pass". It's already being challenged. No doubt the Democrats will be punished electorally for this, and for ignoring the unemployment because this is more important to them. Perhaps they will be punished enough to make it matter in 2010, but certainly by 2012. There's also the possibility that the Senate fix of the Congressional fix (if they decide to do so), would delay final passage. In other words, this isn't the last step. If the Senate Democrats alter the alterations, perhaps it could drag on that much longer, as November looms closer and closer. And there still is the possibility that they don't yet have the votes.

Maybe all that is wishful thinking. But it's better than giving up the fight before the fight is over, and that sense may be starting to set in for some. That would be a shame.

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