After fruitlessly seeking a bipartisan compromise on health care reform for months, the White House seems to have finally realized that Republicans have no interest in compromising and that progressives are fed up with making nice. Now, the administration is preparing to go it alone, even if that means passing reform on a straight party-line vote.
Over the weekend an anonymous source told Bloomberg that the White House is “devising a strategy to pass a measure by relying only on the Democratic majority in each house of Congress.”
And former Senate Majority Leader (and Obama confidant) Tom Daschle says Obama’s giving up on the GOP. “He’s waited and waited,” Daschle said after a meeting with the President on Friday. “He has indicated, much to the chagrin of people in his party, that virtually everything’s on the table. And he’s gotten almost nothing in return for it.”
Well, it’s about time.
I mean, seriously, what took them so long? The GOP has been saying all along that they will not pass anything that the Democrats come up with, and they haven’t bothered to come with anything of their own. I understand why the president wanted to make an attempt at bipartisanship, but after making reasonable tries and getting back “death panels” and Hitler comparisons from members of Congress, it’s a bit hopeless to think that they were going to get anything out of them.
There will be some nattering from the GOP about using the reconciliation tactic, but that just proves the depth of their hypocrisy; they were all in favor of it when they were the majority. So the demand by Sen. Mike Enzi (R-WY) and others that the Democrats get a hypermajority of 75 to 80 votes on the bill is ludicrous.
Now the real test will be if the Democrats stick to it.