Monday, November 23, 2009

No reconciliation from reconciliation

After taking our money (and giving it to Louisiana) to get to 60 votes in the Senate Saturday, Democrats are struggling to keep their 60 votes together. It sure would be easier to just need 51.
So, what's stopping reconciliation on the health care bill?
1. History. Robert Byrd may be 92, but he's not going to go that route quietly. Reconciliation was meant for budgetary bills.
2. What goes around comes around. It wasn't that long ago Republicans talked about the "nuclear option" when trying to get judicial nominees through the Senate. They didn't pull the trigger on that. Because they knew the possibility existed they would not always be the majority party.
If you think Democrats will be the majority party in the Senate for the rest of history, go ahead and try reconciliation. If you'd like some Senate protections when you're the minority party again, step back from reconciliation.
Or start working on your time machine and convince the founding fathers to write the Constitution differently.

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