T Nation

Pelosi: Not Enough Votes to Pass Senate Bill

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/01/21/pelosi-votes-pass-senate-health-house/

WASHINGTON – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday she does not have the votes to pass the Senate’s version of a health insurance bill that is now in severe jeopardy of being scrapped.

Just days ago, that was the most viable option for keeping alive President Obama’s top domestic priority, but with the election of Republican Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate in Massachusetts, the fragile coalition of Democrats has broken apart as lawmakers bicker over which portions of the $900 billion, 10-year Senate bill they will and won’t accept.

Emerging from a closed-door meeting with her caucus, the House speaker vented frustration with the massive version of the legislation.

“In its present form without any changes I don’t think it’s possible to pass the Senate bill in the House,” said Pelosi, D-Calif. “I don’t see the votes for it at this time.”

Among the issues that House lawmakers are unwilling to accept is the 40 percent excise tax on high-value insurance plans that unions earned an exemption from until 2018 after major backlash toward the Democratic-led Congress.

Lawmakers are now looking at options that were left on the drawing board as the party looks to pursue a more modest bill. Senior House Democratic aides say they are evaluating the potential of taking parts of the existing bill and passing it in a piecemeal fashion. But they say privately there is no roadmap and they don’t expect to have a decision for a couple of weeks.

Pelosi didn’t present a blueprint for how Democrats might proceed on health care, except to say that “everything is on the table.”

“We’re not in a big rush. We’ll pause,” Pelosi said. “We have to know what our possibilities are.”

Fox News’ Chad Pergram contributed to this report.

The election of Scott Brown has some of the less ideological Dems in vulnerable districts really spooked as well it should.

I know some will be upset about the loss of the possible health care bill, but I will definitely not be. I don’t agree that it is the government’s job to take care of the people. I also found it very detestable that abortions were going to be covered under the plan. I think it is wrong to allow tax payer dollars to cover programs that not all the tax payers even agree with. Long live Scott Brown!

Gee, do you think maybe now the Democrats will pass something that people in the middle could agree on and which definitely would cut costs, such as doing ONLY:

  1. Allowing insurance competition across state lines
  2. Tort reform
  3. Ending requirements where they exist to cover benefits such as hair transplants or maternity that policy holders might wish to remain self-insured on, or simply finds inapplicable to them
  4. Providing tax breaks for individuals as good as those for employers, so that people could do equally well choosing their own policy rather than taking whatever their employer chose.

And optionally

  1. Finding other ways that the government drives up cost, and reduce or eliminate those problems.

I know that in the 2000+ page bills already tried, NONE of these were even attempted. In fact, states were forbidden to enact tort reform themselves at pain of losing Federal health benefits.

But surely now the Democrats will want to do things like this, right?

If not, why not? (Easy question.)

[quote]Tiribulus wrote:
The election of Scott Brown has some of the less ideological Dems in vulnerable districts really spooked as well it should.[/quote]

Even if there were enough votes, it would have been political suicide for a number of these Dems whose positions are up for grabs come November.

[quote]jo3 wrote:

[quote]Tiribulus wrote:
The election of Scott Brown has some of the less ideological Dems in vulnerable districts really spooked as well it should.[/quote]

Even if there were enough votes, it would have been political suicide for a number of these Dems whose positions are up for grabs come November.[/quote]

Agreed, but this made it unavoidably clear to them, or at least some of them. I guarantee you some who were willing to gamble have now seen that gamble turn into a nearly certain loss. It’s what Brown represents politically. Not Brown himself. Scott Brown is a MCcain republican and not somebody I’d vote for given the choice, but he stole the “Kennedy” seat in Massachusetts under very clearly defined circumstances.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
Gee, do you think maybe now the Democrats will pass something that people in the middle could agree on and which definitely would cut costs, such as doing ONLY:

  1. Allowing insurance competition across state lines
  2. Tort reform
  3. Ending requirements where they exist to cover benefits such as hair transplants or maternity that policy holders might wish to remain self-insured on, or simply finds inapplicable to them
  4. Providing tax breaks for individuals as good as those for employers, so that people could do equally well choosing their own policy rather than taking whatever their employer chose.

And optionally

  1. Finding other ways that the government drives up cost, and reduce or eliminate those problems.

I know that in the 2000+ page bills already tried, NONE of these were even attempted. In fact, states were forbidden to enact tort reform themselves at pain of losing Federal health benefits.

But surely now the Democrats will want to do things like this, right?

If not, why not? (Easy question.)[/quote]

Because that would actually reform the administration of health care benefits in the free market and allow for choices to be made by the recipients as to how they proceed in their decision making as it applies to their own state of health.

Also, you can’t justify appointments, comities, boards or a multi-billion dollar bureaucracy under a plan like that.