Well, the good news is that come 2013, Nebraska will have two Republican Senators for the first time since 1976. Indeed, it now seems likely that Republicans will have a cloture-proof Senate for the 113th Congress. The likelihood for a Republican majority in the 112th Congress has increased dramatically, with an 80-seat pick-up in the House no longer out of the question.
Perhaps, never before in the history of the United States has the majority party in Congress done so much to pass a bill that is so unpopular. With their endless arm twisting and bribery (with our tax dollars as well as those of our children and their children and grandchildren), ol’ Harry got Ben Nelson’s vote. While Democrats have lost the battle of public opinion on health care reform, they have won the battle of political control. The government will likely soon have greater control over our health care, more power will be transferred to Washington while our health care cost will increase and our choices decrease.
And all this in a debate that broke nearly every promise Barack Obama made on the campaign trail. It was not transparent. The majority resorted to the same ol’ political tricks that he decried on the campaign trail. C-SPAN cameras were not present for the negotiations. Indeed, they were taking place at the best possible time to avoid public scrutiny. Ol’ Harry unveiled the reform he promised ten days ago on the Saturday before Christmas:
When normal people are making breakfast for the kids, wrapping last-minute presents, cleaning their houses for out-of-town guests, or still sleeping.
Who conducts business this way?
Only people with something to hide.
Only furtive power brokers doing everything in their power to avoid full, public scrutiny and an open, deliberative process.
There still is time to stop this monstrosity. And let’s encourage Republicans to use every trick in the legislative rule book to block it. And if ol’ Harry complains, well, let’s just remind him of the tricks he pulled to block more popular legislation and qualified Republican nominees when there was a Republican in the White House.