David Dayen at FireDogLake.com is tracking healthcare votes pretty OCD-edly. And here are his last 4 days' headlines, which don't bode well for Obamacare's passage in the House...
Michael Barone at the Wall Street Journal did the math from another direction but reached a similar conclusion today...
The arithmetic as I see it doesn't add up.
The House passed its version of the health bill in November by 220-215. Of those 220, 1 was a Republican who now is a no. 1 Democrat who voted yes has died, 2 Democrats who voted yes have resigned, and 1 Democrat who voted no has resigned as well. So if everyone but the Republican votes the way they did 4 months ago, the score would be 216-215.
But not everyone is ready to vote that way. The House bill included an amendment prohibiting funding of abortions sponsored by MI Democrat Bart Stupak. The Senate bill did not. Mr. Stupak says he and 10 to 12 other members won't vote for the Senate bill for that reason. Others have said the same, including MN's James Oberstar, chairman of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and Dan Lipinski, a product of the Chicago Democratic machine.
Mrs. Pelosi may have some votes in reserve - members who would have voted yes if she needed them in November and would do so again. But we can be pretty sure she doesn't have more than 10, or she wouldn't have allowed the Stupak amendment to come forward at the last minute the first time. She also might get 1 or 2 votes from members who voted no and later announced they were retiring.
But that's not enough - and there are other complications....
Meanwhile the Associated Press is reporting tonight the Dems finally get the Life issue cannot be compromised...
House Democratic leaders Thursday abandoned a long struggle to strike a compromise on abortion in their ranks, gambling that they can secure the support for President Barack Obama's sweeping health care legislation with showdown votes looming as early as next week.
In doing so, they are all but counting out a small but potentially decisive group whose views on abortion coverage have become the principal hang-up for Democrats fighting to achieve the biggest change in American health care in generations....
One of the toughest hurdles facing Pelosi involves abortion....
Others disagree, and party leaders acknowledged Thursday they can't resolve the dispute using budget reconciliation rules....
One final point worth mentioning, although I can't imagine it's realistic, is the newly proposed "Slaughter House Rule," an idea by pro-abort Dem Louise Slaughter to pass the healthcare bill without voting on it. Can't imagine that would ever happen, but Family Research Council has the scoop.
[Graphic via WSJ; Slaughter photo via FRC]
Obama is a disaster and he is rallying a conservative tsunami that is going to take down not just him, but before it is all said and done, his minions too. Acorn was just banned from Ohio for fraudulent voting for good. PP is gonna go down too cause they stand up for child predators and insist on taking privilege with our children by forcing their sex agena on them in schools and refusing to allow parental notification of abortions etc. All I can say is good riddens. Begone. Sayonara. Hasta La bye-bye. And don't come back.
Ecce crucem Domini
Fugite partes adversae
Vicit Leo de Tribu Judah
Radix David. Hallelujah, hallelujah
Here's my question for anybody:
If the abortion languages gets locked down and is 100% ironclad, not going to fund abortion - should Republicans vote for this bill? Do you support the bill if the abortion language is fixed?Posted by: Ex-GOP Voter at March 12, 2010 6:40 AM
You're an optimist, Truthseeker! However, Obamacare is just a battle in the war between freedom and socialized health care. And socialized health care, which seems inevitable in the long run, is just a step (a big one, mind you) in the decline of the United States of America.
Of course, Obamacare also means tax-funded abortions. I should not minimize its evil, should I. So, yes, we have reason to rejoice, but let's be cautious. Count the babies before they're born, but don't count them as having been saved! If the Democrats still get their way...Posted by: Jon at March 12, 2010 6:49 AM
No, ex-gop. There are still too many problems relating to how care will be distributed to the elderly and those with chronic or terminial medical issues.Posted by: Lauren at March 12, 2010 7:55 AM
I'd like to see some language protecting individual consciences, too. Plus, this bill is a monstrosity that violates the principals of solidarity and subsidiarity. There are many, many reasons to want to start this process over. Here's a start, listen to the voters and address their concerns.Posted by: Nerina at March 12, 2010 8:10 AM
What Lauren said!
There are STILL too many issues, even if abortion funding were permanently erased, there is still the elderly who could suffer (and I mean suffer from having care rationed)Posted by: LizFromNebraska at March 12, 2010 8:36 AM
Exactly. What's wrong with starting over? Its been 14 months and the republic has survived the non passage of this bill. No reason to think it won't continue to do so.
Maybe this time our "representatives" can do it without blatant bribes and backroom deals.Posted by: Mary at March 12, 2010 8:41 AM
Change the house rules so that the bill can "pass" without a vote. Mindboggling.
Hugo Chavez and Castro could learn a few things from these folks!Posted by: Mary at March 12, 2010 8:46 AM
I would support the health care bill if there were no abortion funding. Lauren and Liz, I'm sad to say it, but insurers already ration health care. All that would change is who is doing the rationing. Perhaps if these abuses move out of the private sphere of insurance agencies and into the government, we can do more to fight them once a pro-life administration is in place.
Mind you, that's all hypothetical: I don't see a health care bill passing without abortion funding. Planned Parenthood has Obama in its pocket.Posted by: Kelsey at March 12, 2010 8:48 AM
You think Medicare and medicaid don't? Gov't takeover means you will deal with gov't bureaucrats instead of insurance agents.
Insurance reform, yes.
Government inefficiency, waste, and bureaucracy, no.
The Drudge report says Obama may delay his Asia trip to work on health care.
Good idea since the Indonesians were throwing shoes at Obama's picture, the ultimate Muslim insult.Posted by: Mary at March 12, 2010 8:54 AM
Kelsey, I think you are mistaken that putting medical decisions in the hands of the government will be in any way beneficial. We need only look to countries who have done this to see that the groups I mentioned above suffer under that system.
The reality is that private, for profit (not much profit, by the way...A typical insurance company makes less than 3% profit, or put another way, has a lower profit margin than tupperware)insurance drives innovation and allows for more expensive treatments to be approved. Medicare/Medicaid vastly underpay providers. The privately insured make up for these undercuts. If they are driven out of the market (which is the ulitmate plan) there will be no one to support the system and everyone's healthcare will go down.Posted by: Lauren at March 12, 2010 8:59 AM
From a June 2004 article
"According to the American Medical Association’s statistics, 38 percent of physicians in the United States are 50 years of age or older."
"Overall, the supply of physicians is tightening, job opportunities are increasing and job attractiveness is decreasing."
Govt run health care will not attract the best people.
What will happen is that we will be overtaxed to pay for a system that is low quality. This may sound bad, but those of us who can afford to pay for the best will still get it because our friends and relatives are doctors, and we have connections and can afford to go to Singapore etc. The health care bill is another gov't jobs program for bureaucrats. Gov't will force healthy people to pay more into the system than they are now in the form of insurance, penalties and taxes. It will not reduce fraud because the biggest fraud of all is people who don't pay for the service they receive.Posted by: hippie at March 12, 2010 10:52 AM
insurers already ration health care. All that would change is who is doing the rationing. Perhaps if these abuses move out of the private sphere of insurance agencies and into the government, we can do more to fight them
Posted by: Kelsey at March 12, 2010 8:48 AM
Insurers do NOT ration health care. Insurance companies may deny payment for care, but they have no authority to deny care itself. Health care providers can and often do continue providing care even if an insurance company denies payment for their services.
Medicare and Medicaid both have higher denial rates than private insurance companies. Both deny payment for the most frivolous of reasons. Both are bureaucratic nightmares. Try getting customer service from either one! The feds have proven that efficiency and putting the patient first are NOT their strong suit.Posted by: Fed Up at March 12, 2010 12:01 PM
The statements are what I thought they'd be - even if abortion language was cleared up, most on this board we be against - move on the next objection.
I wonder a bit if the pro-life movement missed a massive opportunity on this (and something I saw feared on a few pro-choice blogs back in the day) - and that is no abortion funding but a very strong public option.
Theory goes - it is a fact that a large amount of private insurance plans cover abortion (thus, our tax dollars are already subsidizing abortion). If there were strong public option plans that didn't cover abortion, over time, more people would move on to those plans and abortion funding would decrease overall.
But, I think now the bill either doesn't pass (and it stays status quo with abortion funding via tax exempt status of health care), or it passes with, most likely, some funding for abortions in there.Posted by: Ex-GOP Voter at March 12, 2010 9:35 PM
Posted by: Ex-GOP Voter at March 12, 2010 9:35 PM
What is wrong with interstate competition and tort reform to bring down the costs? Everyone with half a brain knows that the numbers do not add up on this bill. Even the CBO says the numbers they were given cannot be correct so their analysis, while correct based on the numbers they were given, arent really true numbers. Even Durbin is now saying the premiums will rise under this plan.
During the summit with Republicans, Obama and the Democrats didnt answer any of the concerns that were raised. That was because they couldn't. They know what they are doing, they want a government bureaucracy that can never be abolished.Posted by: Kristen at March 12, 2010 10:16 PM
Kristin - what frustrates me is that the GOP and Dems are actually talking a lot about the same things - but they want different speed approaches to it. The new republic had a good article on that - the GOP wants a step-by-step - the Dems argue that it only comprehensive makes sense (or you get MA which expanded coverage but did nothing with cost control).
Tort reform is something that I think is needed, and that I know Obama threw out there. Tough to set limits - would be interested to hear what the current lawsuit limit thoughts are from the GOP - but yes, that makes sense.
Interstate competition makes sense if there is regulation, which the GOP fights against. Every analysis I've read on interstate competition without regulation drives home the same point - the young, healthy folks will find a bare-bones plan in a state with less regulation, thus ending up with a cheap plan with less coverage. The folks who aren't as healthy won't qualify for those plans, but now without as large of a pool (because people have flocked to lesser plans), the premiums are going to sky rocket. It is much like the large "at-risk" pool that some states have and the GOP talks about (but underfunds in their proposals). And yes, the Dems do have the insurance exchange - they just demand certain regulation and bars be met so that what I described doesn't happen.
The GOP doesn't like the regulation - they call it big government - and while on the surface that sounds nice and revolutionary, we've all seen that private enterprise left to themselves is going to do the best thing for their own pockets, not for the consumers. Simple capitalism.
Last note - they do expect premiums to rise on a small percentage of people - that has long been a known fact.Posted by: Ex-GOP Voter at March 13, 2010 9:13 AM
Ex-GOP, private insurance funding abortions isn't that big a problem. Even though most plans cover it, 95% of women private pay for abortion.Posted by: Lauren at March 13, 2010 9:27 AM
Lauren - source for that? I googled the phrase and only found 95% as some personal person's opinion (it seemed like 95% of the people who came in paid out of pocket). You could be right - just not sure of the source.Posted by: Ex-GOP Voter at March 13, 2010 9:30 AM
Dems and Repubs prove repeatedly that they no longer know what is right and what is wrong. They use/misuse language in claiming to have a position on the right to life. Sadly, Mitt Romney had his Pro-Life conversion in an election cycle, became the Governor of MA and then passed RomneyCare, including $50 co-pay abortions. Oh yes, and with the swipe of his pen he also instituted homosexual/gay marriage in MA.
Since when do we need an elected representative to determine what is right and what is wrong?
Any discussion about abortion language in a government run health care program is a distraction to help accomplish the greater goal.
Abortion is NOT health care. A trained medical practitioner that kills a child in the womb is NOT a doctor.
From the Hippocratic Oath; "...I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect. Similarly I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy. In purity and holiness I will guard my life and my art..."Posted by: theonlything2fear at March 15, 2010 10:09 AM