Follow Barack Obama prior and during his tenure as the 44th President of the United States. Read about my personal observations along with every day facts as they happen. This blog will only submit factual information about the first black President, now in his 2nd term of office.


Send E-mail to the Editor at:

Search This Blog

Moderate Democrats to determine if health care bill reaches the Senate floor

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Health Care has no doubt been the biggest topic so far in Barack Obama's short career as President. Also, no doubt that this topic will ring in the New Year on Capital Hill. Now the ominous task is left up to the moderate Democrats, and it now appears that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wants his chamber to start debating the health care bill as early as next week. For President Obama, that's not soon enough. The President would love to get this bill behind him as he then can move on to other issues the country is facing.
President Obama never stops. At the present time, he is traveling throughout Asia, meeting the leaders in several countries, but also lingering in his mind is the bill of his life just waiting out there for his own Democrats to mow over. The issue of health care reform has long been a difficult path to cover, but the President has vowed since early in his run for President still as a Senator of Illinois that he would tackle the issue if he were elected President.
Since the House pushed out its version of health care reform, President Obama is now putting pressure on the other half of Congress, the U.S. Senate. He still expects that the Senate can pass their version very soon, so that a combined version of the bill between the House and the Senate can be finalized, approved by Congress and signed by him before the end of the year.
But again, it's now in the hands of the moderate Democrats. The President knows that he cannot depend on any of the votes from Republicans, as they are united in opposition to Reid's plan. Reid needs 60 votes to start the debate on the legislation. That means that he needs all the Democrats, a total of 58 in the Senate, and at least two independents who usual caucus with them to start the debates.
Again, this goal before the end of the year is getting more unlikely to happen as the days go by, especially since the Senate begins the traditional Thanksgiving break in about a week. After that, the first part of December is all that is left next month as the Senators will break again for Christmas and New Years.
In an attempt to secure votes of anti-abortion Democrats, Democrats in the house passed a bill that prohibits abortion coverage in a government-sponsored plan and in private plans that accept anyone using government subsidies to buy insurance coverage. Because of the abortion part of the bill, the Senate bill passed, but still with a very narrow margin.
At this point, noone has seen the Senate legislation because Reid won't release it until he knows the cost of the bill. Reid has been waiting three weeks for a response from the Congressional Budget Office that can supply the cost.
In early speculation before the vote, most likely the President can get at least 57 votes, but he needs 60. So most likely he will come to the Hill again and do some work trying to convince the teetering Democrats to go with his plan. All he may need it 3 votes, but if he only gets 2, then all bets are off.
Since the President is now in the middle of his Asian trip, any more shore-ups with the Senators will have to wait until he gets back. No doubt when he does get back, the President will be hot on the trail to the Hill


  © Free Blogger Templates Columnus by 2008

Back to TOP