reidhealthcare_logopdfBravo Senator Reid. Again you are showing some gumption and political acumen. The CBO score is very good and the bill does not limit abortion coverage like the Stupak language in the House bill.

“Setting up a historic year-end health care debate, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid unveiled long-awaited legislation Wednesday night to extend coverage to all but 6 percent of eligible Americans and bar private industry from denying insurance because of pre-existing medical conditions.

The Democrat’s $849 billion measure is designed to remake the nation’s health care system, relying on cuts in future Medicare spending to cover costs — as well as on higher payroll taxes for the well-to-do and a new levy on patients undergoing elective cosmetic surgery.

Aides said the mammoth, 2,074-page bill would reduce deficits by $127 billion over a decade and by as much as $650 billion in the 10 years that follow, citing as-yet-unreleased estimates by the Congressional Budget Office.

“Tonight begins the last leg of this journey,” said Nevada Sen. Reid, less than two weeks after the House approved its version of a sweeping remake of the health care system_ and nearly 10 months after President Barack Obama’s Inauguration Day summons to action.

Obama welcomed Reid’s action, saying, “Today, thanks to the Senate’s hard work, we’re closer than ever to enacting solutions to these problems. I look forward to working with the Senate and House to get a finished bill to my desk as soon as possible.” There was no mention of Obama’s longtime goal of signing legislation by year’s end…

…On another controversial issue, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., told reporters Reid had decided to require the side-by-side sale of insurance policies that cover abortion services and do not, an attempt to satisfy both sides. That is far less restrictive than a House-passed provision that left liberal Democrats angry. “

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I think this has to be the battle for the Democratic Party to define itself as a party that can wield power for the benefit of Americans.

In my mind, this vote in the Senate really is do or die for the Dems having a valid argument to retain power.

If they pass this bill, the Dems could cement their control of Congress for decades. If they fail, they will see their grass roots and financial support decline hugely…to the benefit of the GOP.

For that reason, and I’m not a big fan of Reid at all, Reid sure as hell better play hardball with all Blue Dogs and belligerent Dems, if they don’t at least vote for cloture to break the Repub filibuster, they will lose their chairmanships and political and financial support from the Dem-controlled PACs and the DNC.

This is fourth and goal and they must get that ball over the goal line or they will lose big.


I think Reid is prepared to go with reconciliation if that’s what it takes to pass this bill. He’s not going to let healthcare fail. He knows what that would mean for the Dems.


Even though I do not need this healthcare, I am glad that so much progress is being made. I know there are so many people out there suffering needlessly because we have had a congress that was only worried about taking care of the rich. Kudos to President Obama and the Dem majority for sticking this out through all the trials and here’s to a signed bill by January 1. After this, it is on to job creation. It is getting pretty bleak out there folks.


They read your mind, Sue.
From Steny Hoyer:
The House


Good, I am noticing more and more tent towns along the freeways here in CA. It is heartbreaking to see so many needy people. Hell I went to the ATM and went drove back the other day to give a poor guy $5. He was hunched over and looked so thin, I just could not pass him by.


It may not be the “be all to end all” that some want, single payer, universal, no ins. companies, etc. But this is a major step forward.
Will this bill have everything I want? NO! will this bill have everything you want? NO! This will be a foot in the door for what everyone seeks, and that is the way all progressive-social justice legislation has always been done. Atta Boy Harry!

And yes rethugs, you are right. We will get our foot in the door.
Now that didn’t take to long, did it? 1912-2009.


KQ, you are on fire tonight. Thanks for this update.

Lotsa good here. But I am concerned about that states’ right to opt out clause. As has been said in the past, they should not have that option for several years. I believe the quote was something like “let’s give this HCplan a chance to grow legs, before we let states drop it” and I believe the quote came from my no. 1 dem-advocate for HC, Tony Weiner.

I would be comfortable with allowing an opt out after 5-7 years in.


I was catching up with my Podcasts of Rachel and KO yesterday and on Rachel, I heard that 40 or more elected DEM women will refuse to vote for the bill if the Stupak amendment stays in.


Thanks, KQ. There is still a long way to go, but this seems very positive from what I understand about it, and I think the ice has been broken toward full, reasonable coverage for the country’s future.