Reid to Bauchus: Stop Chasing GOP Votes On Health Care
What the hell got into Harry Reid today?! Did somebody give this cat a backiyatomy? Did he grow a spine overnight? I am just totally floored that our Majority Leader is actually (gulp) leading!
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Tuesday ordered Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) to drop a proposal to tax health benefits and stop chasing Republican votes on a massive health care reform bill.
Reid, whose leadership is considered crucial if President Barack Obama is to deliver on his promise of enacting health care reform this year, offered the directive to Baucus through an intermediary after consulting with Senate Democratic leaders during Tuesday morning’s regularly scheduled leadership meeting. Baucus was meeting with Finance ranking member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) Tuesday afternoon to relay the information.
According to Democratic sources, Reid told Baucus that taxing health benefits and failing to include a strong government-run insurance option of some sort in his bill would cost 10 to 15 Democratic votes; Reid told Baucus it wasn’t worth securing the support of Grassley and at best a few additional Republicans.
Considering how shitty this day started with respect to news about the fight for health care reform and specifically rumors of the White House being willing to cave on a public option, this has pretty much turned it all the way around. Damn I think I need a drink!