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Reconciliation: Exactly how it is different to use it now?

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by PatsFanInVa, Jan 16, 2010.

  1. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Here's a good article from the Washington Monthly regarding the current question among the Democratic majority in Congress, as to whether to use reconciliation to pass health care:

    The Washington Monthly

    Oh no! If the Dems use reconciliation to use their hefty majorities to actually govern, why, why, there will be riot! Uh, yeah. The same 20 guys will come out in every city and Faux news will call it a million...

    Oh I exaggerate of course. I am sure you will have a new round of annoying teabaggery, and the teaming dozens will make their case, wail, and gnash their teeth because the majority is doing its job and governing.

    What's that you say? Reconciliation is a terrible, terrible end-run of the God-given Republican right to filibuster...? The Dems are steamrolling the Republicans, because there are more of them, and those bastards believe the party in power should actually pass its agenda? Hmm.

    Historically, Republicans have no problem with passing bills by reconciliation:

    Truth And Reconciliation | The New Republic

    There's a chart here of the reconciliation bills signed into law since '80, with no particular emphasis on which were introduced by Republicans and which by Dems.

    What it does demonstrate is what a load of horse crap it is to complain about the use of the budget reconciliation process to pass such a measure now.

    The process was fine as a means of tax giveaways to the wealthy under Bush, or as a means of dismantling much of the human services infrastructure of the country under both Reagan and Clinton... how did it become such a terrible miscarriage of the process now?

    I have never before read any poster on here predicting a "riot" over the use of reconciliation, nor have I ever before read of any poster expressing an opinion of reconciliation one way or another, before this particular congress was seated.

    Why now, exactly?

    Exactly.

    Welp, whatever you think of transparency in government, at least the "pundits" hereabout are transparent.

    :D

    PFnV
  2. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    No one is saying that the Dems can't use it. They can if they want to. The question is whether or not they will, and what the repurcussions would be. We've already seen the numbers for the politicians who support it plummet. Imagine what voting yes would mean if they opted for reconciliation. Again, they absolutely can if they want to.
  3. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    3 reasons :

    1) It's never been used on anything remotely this big.

    2) If Brown wins, still a huge if, the people have spoken in Mass, NJ, VA, for the nation that we don't want this.

    3) Related to two, these bills are very unpopular. Tax cuts, welfare reform were popuar around the country. Drilling in Alaska was (and is) popular in Alaska, the only state that it affects.

    The people DON'T WANT THESE PLANS. That's why they should have to get 60 and even then with the polling how it is it's a middle finger flip to 60% of us.
  4. Patriot_in_NY

    Patriot_in_NY Rookie

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    2 & 3 being the most poinant and important here. As I said in another post (with links), Ameircan are generally in favor of using the filibuster for unpopular (in their mind) moves by congress. To use Reconciliation to circumvent the filibuster on something that is profoundly unpopular, would be disasterous.

    Probably, the best LONG TERM solution for the Dems, is for Brown to win and kill Obamacare. It will safely allow vulnurable Dlue Dogs not to have to put their name behind something as unpopular as Obamacare. If Brown wins, it gives a legitimate out for many Dems that could be in serious trouble in November.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2010
  5. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Long term, you make a very good, and logical point. However, we're dealing with ideologues in DC, and logic usually doesn't hold much weight in their decision making process. Ideologues, like Bush for example, tend to be stubborn about what it is that they believe in.
  6. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The public, actually, identifies health care reform as something they want. As always, they define any tax increase as something they do not want. When you ask someone the question as a tax question, making the leap to a tax argument that is usually presented hyperbolically, you get a no. If you ask whether the present health care system is fine and dandy, you also get a no.

    So the question for the Dems is whether to let health care reform be killed, as it has been under several previous administrations of both parties, or whether to push forward with it.

    I agree that the watered-down bills currently in the house and senate have been utterly de-nutted by efforts to mollify both Republicans and Blue Dog Democrats. I also think the Dems did a piss-poor job of messaging. I do think the present bills are better than nothing, and I furthermore think that reaching a final bill where you only need 51 votes will beat the crap out of the ridiculous compromises that have brought us to this point.

    I don't mind the service provision in the bills, i.e., adding some tens of millions to the pool of the insured. I do mind that this "horse designed by committee" has managed to undermine the competition provisions that were the other half of the aim of health care reform. So we'll ALL have insurance, and the insurance companies have new customers -- and surprise surprise, we'll ALL be overcharged over time, and line their collective pockets.

    The ballsy move right now would be to do the bill in reconciliation and strengthen whatever enforced competition provisions are in the bill or can be written in the bill. That is, keep the House public option, and let the pubbies scream bloody murder.

    That would be a huge gamble, but it would also embrace a leadership function that the congress all too often abdicates. Much would depend on whether anybody perceives a benefit to the system by November of this year, which is an iffy proposition at best (i.e., chances are downright infinitisimal.) So we'll be back to the economy. Experts say it is unlikely, but a good turnaround in unemployment (say two percentage points by November,) and it's back to the drawing board for the GOP.

    Interesting times as always :)

    PFnV

    By the way -- a couple of off-year elections may or may not really tell us anything about those states' moods when it comes to big national issues. The Republican in Virginia won specifically by keeping it local, and the guy up there in Mass is making a run of it by talking about fiscal issues and avoiding the hot-button topics, if the press accounts are to be believed. In other words, if Republicans run and win like this in November, the tea partiers will have to stay out of the race. Otherwise all the electable Republicans will be defending against cries of "RINO!" or fighting NY-23 style battles.
  7. Wolfpack

    Wolfpack Banned

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    Yes, the public wants health care reform but an overwhelming majority of the public does not want this particular health care reform.

    As another poster in here aptly put it, if the Dems use reconciliation to pass this extremely unpopular bill, then they are going to have to live with the consequences. Pure and simple. I sure know if I was a Democrat up for re-election in a moderate district right now, I would start getting resumes ready and prepare my self for unemployment.
  8. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    Exactly, we want something that lowers the cost per unit of healthcare - which would make it more affordable for the currently insured and easier to help the currently uninsured. This bill makes healthcare per unit more expensive but makes it "affordable" by raising taxes.

    I expect Coakley to squeak this out and for the Dems to jam this crap through - it's a sad state of affairs, though, when the Dems have to rush it through before they lose their huge majorities because something is so unpopular. Any thinking person should realize quickly how wrong that is. If the Dems had any sense of right they would start this over; first by figuring out how to reduce the cost per unit of healthcare and then to figure out how to help the uninsured. And, yes, they should do it on CSPAN.
  9. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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  10. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Ah, to be totally forthcoming here and step outside the echo chamber, the bills as currently posited are overwhelmingly unpopular to a little less than half the country.

    Healthcare Bill Support Ticks Up; Public Still Divided

    For all intents and purposes, they split right down the middle [as of 1/12/10].

    It's amazing how you guys can trade around a number like "up by 2 percentage points" (or whatever,) put it through the Magic Conjecture Machine, and come out with one of them thar "overwhelming unpopularity" statements... and not check to see if you're down 2 points by the next week.

    :) Thanks for the lulz

    PFnV
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2010
  11. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Well the link doesn't give the questions asked, nor the breakdown by pubbie, Ind and dem, it does mention that the people with strong feeling are more likely to be against the bill. More importantly it is a poll of adults not likely voters.

    Not much information here.
  12. ljuneau

    ljuneau Rookie

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    "to be totally forthcoming here " LOL Oh, thank you for being so forthcoming and deceptive at the same time!!! LOL

    When you want to stop playing a putz and actually want to use real numbers regarding hc, see Obama and Democrats' Health Care Plan. It's very easy to understand and comprehend: the majority of Americans are negative for the Obama plan. Spin, twist, and dice all you want - the number don't back up your leftist logic. Americans don't want the Obama socialist hc plan.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2010
  13. alvinnf

    alvinnf Rookie

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    Why should we assume that they will get their sixty votes even if Brown loses. I think if nothing else this Mass race has sent a loud clear message. You have Reid losing badly at home and Dodd jumping ship. If you are a Junior Senator and you are opposed to this bill but are currently towing the company line. You have to be thinking long and hard about your future. Why bite the dust when the old rats are just jumping ship?
  14. PatsFanInMaine

    PatsFanInMaine Rookie

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    Assuming that Health Care is passed on reconciliation, what happens in five years when that legislation expires?
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2010
  15. alvinnf

    alvinnf Rookie

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    You know, so why don't you share it with us? Most of it does'n't come into effect until 2014. Sounds like a one year deal?
  16. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    You picked by far the most generous poll.

    Fox/Opinion Dynamics has 51-39 against.
    CNN/Opinion Research has 59-40 against.
    Gallup has 41-37 against (your Gallup included leaners with no opinion).

    Health Policy

    Rasmussen has 55-40 against.

    Health Care Reform - Rasmussen Reports

    So . . . you're wrong.
  17. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Some data on the popularity of Mass care, the cousin of Obamacare:

  18. PatsFanInVa

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    My GOD!!! RASMUSSEN says we're all against health care reform?!?!?

    DOES PRESIDENT McCAIN KNOW ABOUT THIS?

    :D

    You're making no sense here, BF. "Your poll included leaners with no opinion." When you internally contradict yourself, it's clear that you're just playing "swat the bad poll." There's no such thing as a leaner with no opinion. They are two different categories.

    If you and your echo-chamber-mates are "strongly against" health care reform, that's fine and dandy. If you think you end up with two votes because of it, that's another thing entirely... we call it a delusion of grandeur.

    The opposition is energized, as the opposition so often is. The governing party looks at the details in governing, as do their supporters; after all, there is no "oooooh I like the Republican house version better than the Republican senate version" to worry about. There is simply no Republican counterproposal, other than "scrap it all."

    So the question raised by the "leaning" contingent is this: Will the pubbies turn them into opposers-in-retrospect, or will the dems turn them into supporters-in-retrospect?

    On the right, from what I see here, you guys have just decided everyone hates health care reform by talking to like-minded and energized members of the base, and by consuming the same lobbyist propaganda the tea partiers consume and repackage as "outsider grass roots sentiment."

    Predictably, the majority who prefer the people they voted in has eroded. That often happens, especially with the expending of political capital in a get-something-done administration. The Dems are gambling this time, no doubt about it: they are basically saying "you get in power to do something, not just to win the election."

    But the Dem majority in public sentiment on this issue has eroded perhaps close to the point of parity. The right's phrasing of the sentiment nationwide, by contrast, has deteriorated into parody.

    The cherry-picking may make you guys feel better, but gallup is pretty damn reliable. Your point that the rock-solid opposers of health care outnumber the "leaners" against health care has some merit, but not nearly the merit you seem to imagine.

    PFnV
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2010
  19. PatsFanInVa

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    Much more information if you actually read it, 13.

    From the link... read it again...

    You can actually opine that there's "not much information here" when you read the bloody information. Until then -- obviously -- your opinion is without merit outside the echo chamber.

    Best of luck with that whole comprehension thing.

    PFnV
  20. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    By the way, from your link (BF) to pollingreport.com:

    - you cherry-pick from CNN the # opposing and supporting health care, but you neglect to mention that 10% oppose it because it is not liberal enough. In other words, 50% total either favor the current plan or prefer a more liberal plan, 46% oppose the current plan as too liberal, and 4% are unsure.

    - On the CNN question, "would you feel enthusiastic, pleased, displeased, or angry if Congress passes a health care bill?"

    - 47% would be enthusiastic or pleased
    - 51% would be displeased or angry
    - 2% are unsure

    Within the displeased/angry contingent, 28% would be angry. That's consistent with the general hard-right base range.

    Interestingly when asked if they would favor or oppopse a public option administered by the federal government that would compete with plans offered by private health insurance companies, 54% favor it and 46% oppose it, with 1% unsure.

    Also from the same link -- the one you quote -- characterizing the Gallup numbers from Jan. 8-10 2010, you can either phrase the public's opinion as 37 in favor, 41 against (if you like to emphasize "hard" sentiment,) or 49% in favor and 46% against (including those leaning one way or the other.) You cannot conclude from this page, in any reading, that there is some vast groundswell against health care reform, only that it is a hotly contested issue, with sentiment split pretty much down the middle, as of Jan. 8-10.

    PFnV

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