Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Will the House pass Obamacare this time?

Obamacare passed the House the first time with a narrow 220-215 margin. Since then, three of the 'yes' votes have left the House, one 'no' vote has left, and another 'yes' vote, the sole Republican to support the bill, has announced that he will vote 'no' next time. That leaves the score at 216-215 in favor of the House's version of Obamacare. However, a critical complication is that, to support the reconciliation approach, the House will need to approve this time the unpopular Senate version of the bill complete with the "Cornhusker kickback," the "Louisiana purchase," and the abortion language that Rep. Stupak and his ten or so associates have said they will oppose. Further, there are a lot of House Democrats in districts in which Obama is not popular. Michael Barone explains:
[M]ore than 40 House Democrats represent districts which John McCain carried. Most voted no in November and would presumably be hurt by switching to yes now. Moreover, Mr. Obama's job approval now hovers around 48%, five points lower than his winning percentage in 2008. His approval on health care is even lower.

Another 32 House Democrats represent districts where Mr. Obama won between 50% and 54% of the vote, and where his approval is likely to be running under 50% now. That leaves just 176 House Democrats from districts where Mr. Obama's approval rating is not, to borrow a real-estate term, under water. That's 40 votes less than the 216 needed.

To pass it, the Democrats will need to get creative, possibly like this.

PREVIOUSLY on Obamacare:
Britain's Obamacare: Hospital patient dies of thirst as nurses ignore his pleas for water
Nobel Laureate economist explains why socialized medicine always fails
Rep. Ryan explains the dishonesty of Obamacare economics
Obamacare 2.1 and its discontents (illustrated)
Pushing a losing agenda
The Obama enigma
An encounter with the Ideologue-in-Chief
Democrats' stealth plan to resuscitate Obamacare
Those who want to go done with the ship: Obamacare Dead-enders
Obamacare may raise insurance costs by 54%
Harvard's Dean of Medicine opposes Obamacare
How good is Canadan health care?
Rahm Emanuel explains that they are not even trying have Obamacare make sense
Harvard economist explains why Obamacare will raise premiums
HHS says Obamacare will cause costs to go up and cause employers to drop coverage
To protest Obamacare, San Francisco holds a sick-in
Polls say majority of voters oppose Obamacare
Obama wants to kill your mother!
VP Biden offers medical advice
"The Post Office, with scalpels"
Dems oppose affordable medicine
Socialized medicine in Japan: Baby dies after 8 hospitals refuse to admit mother
The Canadian health care collapse
Canadian official: "the system is imploding"
Canadian MP flies to US for treatment

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