My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


Officially Put Me In the Pessimist Camp 

I've been following The Corner really closely today--probably closer than any normal person should. And the maneuvering is fast and furious on Capitol Hill today. It looks like the Stupak block has splintered, but maybe as many as seven are still on board. Then the Dems abandon the Slaughter Strategy (too late--they've still grabbed the mantle of coward with Friday's votes). Now it looks like the President is going to issue an Executive Order preventing government funding of abortion . . . but that's likely to tick off the hard-core abortionists, and might be enough to screw up the process in the Senate for the reconciliation . . .which will leave the House having passed the Senate bill and the reconciliation being a forgotten afterthought.

What does it all mean?

Who knows. The most important piece of information came out late tonight from the Congressional Budget Office, which basically calls out the Dems for their assumptions and says the new bill will actually cost close to $1.2 Trillion dollars and add as much as $260 billion to the deficit. The problem, as I see it, is that there is too little time to play this for advantage before the vote tomorrow.

UNLESS . . . there is some arcane rule that says these new CBO numbers alter the Senate Bill too much to be able to pass "as is."

Somehow, I think Alcee Hastings' statement applies: "We make them up [the rules] as we're going along."

My prediction: this will pass. My guess is 217-219 votes for it. It will be the legislative victory Obama needs to try to press his more ambitious and damaging stuff next: Amnesty and Cap n' Trade.

However, I suspect that the long run will be ugly. There will be enough things about the vote that tick off the Senate that they'll reject the reconciliation package outright, and the President will have to break his pledge to Pro Lifers by rescinding or watering down the EO. Which will leave enough Dems ticked off and frustrated at their own leadership that any leverage Pelosi/Reid/Obama had will be effectively neutralized.

So when amnesty comes up and the voters take their anger over being ignored on this one and heap it upon their Congresskritters anew it will be persuasive. This victory will be, at best, a Pyrrhic one for The One, and it will also be the last accomplishment of the soon-to-be-retired Harry Reid and the soon-to-be Minority Leader Pelosi.

All of which will be nice . . . for now. Twenty years from now when my children can't find jobs and find that their children have to wait two weeks to get antibiotics for a respiratory infection, that will be of little comfort.

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