If there is any justice, impeachment proceedings await Pelosi, Reid and Barry Obama if they putsch the health bill through. The American people don't want it. Period.
We are a government of the people, by the people, for the people. Who the hell do these power-mad clowns think they are?
Obama said this on TV last night: “and this health care plan will reduce your premiums up to 3,000 percent!” And the audience of idiot drones started cheering…
Atlas reader James wrote, "It’s like the game show Family Feud":
Host: “Name something that people do with their shoe laces”
Idiot Drone Contestant #1: “They eat them!”
Idiot Drone Family starts clapping and shouting out : “Yeah! Good answer! Good Answer!”
Yeah, when pigs fly.
I will give a hat tip to Brett Baier in his interview with the little O last night. He kicked his ass and Obama sounded like a bumbling thug.
Commentary by Robert Tracinski
1. Defeat and Dishonor
All eyes are on the "whip count" of yes and no votes for the health care bill in the House.
The latest news is the flip-flop of Dennis Kucinich, who will now vote "yes" after previously strongly opposing the bill because it didn't go far enough toward socialism—or rather, because it moved toward the wrong variant of socialism: the fascist model.
But my impression is that Kucinich doesn't really change the count. I don't remember seeing him on anyone's list of potential swing votes against the bill. Most vote counters have already factored in the likelihood that the far left will go along with the bill simply because it's a step toward a government takeover.
So the whip count now stands at about 205 "yes" votes, 11 votes short of passage, and it's not clear that the Democrats will be able to add much to that total. As Jack Wakeland noted to me: "The original House bill passed 220-215. The election of Republican Scott Brown to be the new Senator from Massachusetts, as well as continued tea party and other grassroots opposition, has cost at least 15 votes in the House—and possibly as many as 25."
If things go well, that could be the real significance of the vote: it will allow us to measure the exact political impact—so far—of the tea party movement.
What also gives me cause for hope is the general air of pathetic desperation in the House leadership's machination to get a health care bill rammed through somehow.
Since many House Democrats had problems with the Senate version of the bill, and they didn't trust the Senate to be able or willing to make those changes later, Democrats first proposed passage of the bill in the House simultaneously with the Senate's passage of revisions demanded by the House. But then the Senate parliamentarian shot that down, quite sensibly pointing out that the Senate can't vote on revisions to a law that doesn't exist yet.
So their latest attempt is a "self-executing rule," also called the "Slaughter Rule" after House Rules Committee Chairwoman Louise Slaughter, in which the House would pass its preferred changes to the Senate bill, and in passing those changes would "deem" the Senate bill to be passed. But this doesn't actually change the outcome. Once the Senate bill is "deemed" to be passed, it would go on to the president to be signed—while the changes to the bill could still be forgotten and abandoned by the Senate.
So the whole idea of this parliamentary pretzel is to allow House Democrats to say that they never really voted for the Senate bill, that they just voted for the corrections—while actually having them vote for the Senate bill. Or rather, its goal is to have them vote for the Senate bill without actually voting for it.
This is pretty clearly unconstitutional, violating the procedure set out in Article 1, Section 7 of the Constitution for the passage of a bill into law. The Constitution states that both Houses must have an official vote for a bill with the exact same wording—precisely the situation the House's "self-executing" maneuver is intended to avoid.
Such constitutional provisions are rarely enforced by the Supreme Court—though they did so in the case of this rule's most immediate precedent, the line-item veto, which was struck down for a similar reason. Still, the Supreme Court is generally very reluctant to insert itself into the procedural rules that Congress sets for itself. That is precisely why these constitutional rules must be internalized by Congress. It should be the rulebook they follow because they themselves believe it is the right thing to do—and not just because they are afraid of being slapped down by the Supreme Court.
But the left regards the Constitution as an irrelevant obstacle. As President Obama just put in an interview with Fox News, he doesn't "spend a lot of time worrying about what the procedural rules are." Or as the left used to say, in defending Communist dictatorships, you can't make an omelet without breaking a few eggs. Except that it wasn't eggs they were breaking; it was skulls.
But I think the Democrats are deluding themselves if they think anyone is going to be fooled by any parliamentary maneuvers. Saying that they voted for the health care bill without voting for the health care bill is going to go over about as well as John Kerry saying that he voted for the bill before he voted against it. The American people have a lot of experience with dishonest politicians, and they can spot a cheap evasion when they see it.
The article below describes some of the controversy over the Slaughter Rule and describes some good Republican tactics to flush Democrats out into the open, including forcing them to hold a vote on whether they are going to vote on the Senate bill. Can you imagine having to defend voting "no" on that one?
This is going to be hair-raisingly close, but I still stand by my earlier prediction. In trying to shove this bill through, the left had to choose between legislative defeat and dishonor. They chose dishonor. They will get defeat—and not just in this vote.
Legal blogger William Jacobson describes what the Democrats are doing as "slaughter by self-execution," meaning that this vote may be "self-executing" for the Democrats' political careers.
Or as TIA Daily reader Ron Chandler puts it: "Nancy Pelosi wants the House to say the Senate bill is 'deemed passed,' so they can pass the bill without voting on it. Can the American people then say that Obama, Biden, Pelosi, and Reid are 'deemed impeached'?"
"'Deem and pass': Democrats' New Tactic for Healthcare Reform Bill," Gail Russell Chaddock, Christian Science Monitor, March 16
With 178 seats in the House–and four of 13 seats on the powerful Rules Committee–Republicans don't have the votes to defeat this strategy, but they aim to make it as costly to Democrats as possible, especially those in tough races in 2010.
"Make no mistake, this will be a career-defining and a Congress-defining vote," said Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday. "Anyone who endorses this strategy will be forever remembered for trying to claim they didn't vote for something they did. It will go down as one of the most extraordinary legislative sleights of hand in history."
The procedure of one vote to both adopt a resolution and concur on a Senate amendment to a bill has been around since 1933…. But all sides agree that it's never been used on a measure this significant.
"It's a procedure typically used on very routine matters," says Ross Baker, a political scientist at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ….
GOP leader John Boehner of Ohio announced today that Republicans plan to force a vote on a resolution requiring an up-or-down vote on the Senate health care bill. Even if the resolution fails, it will put Democrats on record in a way that can be used in 2010 election campaigns….
Meanwhile, Rep. David Dreier (R) of California, the top Republican on the House Rules Committee, is calling for the Rules Committee debate on this issue to be televised. "With the Democratic majority poised to turn the rules of the House on their head just to get their government takeover of healthcare through, we need cameras there to record it," he said in a statement on Tuesday.
Why are House Democrats so suicidally focused on pushing through an unpopular bill? Because they believe that the Republicans will never be able to repeal it and that they will have established a permanent new government entitlement that will only grow in future decades, pushing this country permanently farther toward the left.
Mark Steyn makes this point and also concludes that the Democrats are probably right—that the history of the Republicans' response to the welfare state indicates that they don't have the backbone to roll it back.
But there is something different about this bill. Previous welfare-state expansions enjoyed public support and passed with bipartisan majorities—which served to demoralize any opposition. Never has a bill like this gone through on a strict one-party vote when the American people oppose it by nearly two to one. And that means that there is no reason for the Republicans to accept this bill.
And that's why a pledge to repeal the bill is gaining momentum, with 37 House and Senate members on board—including a number of rising stars in the party. Even more telling is the fact that 163 Republican congressional candidates have signed it.
UPDATE: Pence to the preliminary CBO score as given on ABC’s Top Line moments ago:
“Only in Washington, DC can you spend a trillion dollars and say you’re gonna save the taxpayer’s money.”