March 20, 2010
So the House will vote to approve the health care bill on Sunday, the Senate will promptly polish off a “fix-it” bill, and this whole political nightmare will end — right?
Not so fast.
Michigan Rep. Bart Stupak, an anti-abortion Democrat, is floating a plan to introduce an entirely separate bill — in addition to the main Senate bill and the House’s package of changes — to tighten restrictions on abortion funding. This would create a whole new set of votes that have to be cast before Congress can finish its work.
On top of that, Republican senators are warning that they will drag out the process of approving the “sidecar” package of changes that House Democrats want to see passed in exchange for their vote on the main Senate bill. Republicans plan to tinker with that bill so that after they’re done with it, the House has to take it up again.
If they succeed, it means the health care issue won’t go away Sunday — or even next week. And Democrats who are looking to get beyond the debate, particularly those in moderate or conservative districts, will be dogged by the issue as they enter the high season of campaigning.
This article was posted: Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 7:59 am