Lieberman Says No To Health Care Bill

Sen. Joe Lieberman says the Medicare buy-in and public option mean he's voting against the health care bill.

A Senate Democratic aide, flummoxed by Mr. Lieberman’s stance, said, “It was a total flip-flop and leaves us in a predicament as to what to do.”

What would it take for Lieberman to change his mind?

“You’ve got to take out the Medicare buy-in,” he said. “You’ve got to forget about the public option. You probably have to take out the Class Act [long term care provisions], which was a whole new entitlement program that will, in future years, put us further into deficit.”

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  • Display: Sort:
    Really (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 07:55:32 PM EST
    the thing ought to be junked as it is now. Here we go again with everybody making demands.

    It's become a comedy of errors (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by Cream City on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:49:08 PM EST
    but it's no laughing matter.  The Dems will pay for this buffoonery, and dearly.

    Excellent (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:02:52 PM EST
    Now we can't get 60 votes, right? So what can we pass with 50?

    In other words, Lieberman is against (5.00 / 10) (#3)
    by inclusiveheart on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:06:52 PM EST
    any and all reform.  Big surprise.

    Why didn't Obama have a even a freakin' tiny clue that his problems would be within our caucus?  Why did he focus so exclusively on those that were never even a part of the caucus when his own house was in disarray?  What a fool he has been with this trip down bipartisanship lane.

    I've got his next slogan (none / 0) (#46)
    by cawaltz on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 09:02:48 AM EST
    Joe for Quou(as in status)!

    Lieberman is a petty, bitter, vindictive (5.00 / 9) (#4)
    by caseyOR on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:08:21 PM EST
    little man. Why the Dems are surprised by this, well, surprises me. Did they not notice his behavior in the last presidential election? Have they not been listening to anything he has been saying this year?

    Clearly, that whole "give us 60 votes in the senate" and we'll get stuff done claim was a bunch of hooey. Strip Lieberman of all seniority and committee chairs immediately. Better yet, give up the facade of comity and just boot him out of the caucus. Maybe a little tough love will give pause to the other little princes and princesses. Yeah, I mean you Ben, Blanche and Mary.

    Call his bluff (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by Steve M on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:49:27 PM EST
    Let him go down as the guy who blocked healthcare, if that's truly what he wants to be his legacy.  Certainly we can't give up virtually everything that's good in the bill just to placate him.

    Sure we can (5.00 / 3) (#11)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:25:37 PM EST
    And we probably will

    Except that he actually can't (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:34:04 PM EST
    So in a way, he's calling the Democratic bluff, and I'm a little thankful for that.

    As to the Senate rules, I say "burn baby burn."


    I agree (none / 0) (#29)
    by magster on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 11:13:39 PM EST
    This might be the best news for HCR.  Once 60 is out of the question, Obama Reid and Rahm have to decide between failure or reconciliation.  There is no third option.

    They're going to attempt to surrender again (none / 0) (#30)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 11:39:16 PM EST
    But I have a feeling that even that won't work.

    Change we can believe in (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Lora on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:53:01 PM EST
    Why doesn't he just change parties already.

    I'm sure he will, if he believes ... (none / 0) (#42)
    by cymro on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 03:04:35 AM EST
    ... that switch will give him more leverage and more opportunity to seem important.

    If Lieberman still has the ability to (5.00 / 11) (#10)
    by Anne on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:17:21 PM EST
    "flummox" Democratic aides who are on the front lines of all of this, it doesn't say much for the general political skill and acumen of the Democrats, does it? - because those of us who are just spectators could see this coming from miles away.

    Lieberman has been a pimple on the a$$ of the Democratic party long enough; it's time - long past time, actually - to kick him into irrelvance and make him sit with the mouth-breathers.  Where he belongs.

    If it's not Snowe, it's (5.00 / 6) (#14)
    by dk on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:38:48 PM EST
    Nelson.  If it's not Nelson, it's Lieberman.  If it's not Lieberman, it's McKaskill (she's sounding pretty negative about the whole thing today too).

    IMO, it's always going to be someone unless you have an administration and a major political party that wants healthcare reform.  At this point, that scenario doesn't exist.

    Re-con-cil-i-a-tion.... (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by mike in dc on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:47:31 PM EST
    ...someone tell Harry Reid to start using that word in a declarative sentence.  As in, "since we cannot produce a good bill that will survive a filibuster, we have no choice but to pursue this through reconciliation.  Since we only need 50 votes for that, we can then implement a robust public option, restore the revocation of the antitrust exemption, expand medicare to 55-64 year olds, and permit all citizens to participate in an open exchange similar to that available to federal employees."  

    Thanks, Mean Joe!

    And can we add a codicil (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by Cream City on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:35:05 PM EST
    to the effect of "nyah, nyah"?

    Neener, neener, neener!! (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:47:18 PM EST
    Can we bring back pie-throwing, too?  Please?

    Oh, yes, let's do -- (none / 0) (#49)
    by Cream City on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 11:02:09 AM EST
    I vote against a nice, sweet, soft meringue, though.  I vote for pecan pie, with lots of molasses, so at least something will stick to these idjits.

    Ding, ding, ding (none / 0) (#18)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:24:20 PM EST
    So 50 gets us to reconciliation? (none / 0) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:46:01 PM EST
    Why all this 60 crap then?  I've been out of the loop for over a week......how did we deviate so far away from simply seeking reconciliation?  I was under the impression it was accepted by the playas that we were going to have to go that route anyhow.

    Part of me wonders what would happen (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:53:24 PM EST
    if the chair said:

    "At the call of the Chair, the Senate will now proceed to vote on S. xxx."

    Republicans could make a point of order, but you could table that by majority vote. The 60 vote requirement is a charade--one that the Dems apparently value more than good policy.


    Re Sen. McCaskill's comments today (none / 0) (#26)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:57:09 PM EST
    on Fox News that she may not be able to vote for any HCR which increases fed. budget deficit--

    Is this a signal Pres. Obama wants HCR to just go away quietly?


    After all of this, I can't see how that's possible (none / 0) (#27)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 11:00:28 PM EST
    I saw that too when Josh and I (none / 0) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 11:05:02 PM EST
    went to dinner.  They had Fox News on at the Chinese buffet :)  Of course I'm not putting things together well at this point since much Senate tusseling over this recently went unnoticed by me.  I did think it was very very strange though for her to say such a thing.

    Perhaps it's a signal that (none / 0) (#34)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:40:16 AM EST
    Senator McCaskill wants this to all go away.  I suspect there are many Senators who feel that way.  They've gotten themselves in quite a mess with this ridiculous bill.  

    Harry Reid sd. he won't go the (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:49:05 PM EST
    reconciliation route.  Of course, he could change his mind, or be playing 11-dim. chess, or whatever.

    Oh My God No! (none / 0) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:53:19 PM EST
    Well, I'm glad I missed that.  I'd have to give up blogging for the rest of the year out of sheer frustration.  So Lieberman is forcing his hand.....well good, now I know what andgarden is talking about now and force away Joe.  Knock thyself out!

    It's not just Joe............... (none / 0) (#35)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:43:55 AM EST
    Now I'm hearing even more of the moderates are falling off the bandwagon, including Senator Webb of Virginia.  He's voted 5 times against leadership in the last couple of weeks.  Nelson of Florida is also making noises about not voting for the bill.  At this point, I beginning to think that they won't have even 51 votes required for reconciliation.  Too many democrats are not willing to vote for this mess just so Obama can declare a big victory.   Why would they fall on their swords for Obama or Harry Reid?  More unfunded mandates to their states isn't working for them.  

    Maybe it's a negotiating ploy? (none / 0) (#41)
    by cymro on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 02:59:30 AM EST
    If they think that the administration won't permit failure, it puts them in a very strong position to negotiate for whatever that want in return for a 'yes' vote.

    Do I dare entertain the notion that (none / 0) (#47)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 09:25:36 AM EST
    any of them care enough about the little man to wage such a battle?  When it comes to Webb, I'm not sure I can say that his personality displays such characteristics.  It's gutsy to do something like that but it is lone wolf too.  He has a military mindset, he'll go gavel in the Senate every single day everyone is recessing to avoid what the Dem party cannot abide...that was just another form of standing on the wall.  I don't see him as a good political negogiator when it comes to healthcare for the masses.  He came out of the military and in the military the myth that you have earned your life situation and your monetary gains isn't much of a myth and tends to be more of a fact.  It is only my opinion but Jim Webb is at risk for actually believing that the poor and the needy are all lazy slobs who have earned their lot in life.

    Does not supporting HCR (none / 0) (#43)
    by ding7777 on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 06:29:06 AM EST
    mean he would support the filibuster?

    He could vote for cloture (giving Reid the 60 votes he needs) and still vote against the HCR


    Nobody has asked the question yet, (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by jeffinalabama on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 06:38:03 AM EST
    at least not specifically...

    Is it better to see this proposal, at least what we have read and heard, fail?

    No single payer, no public option, fines on uninsured, no negotiation for drug prices, mandates on individuals to purchase, women's issues not covered fully, abortion coverage questions... I am not sure this ought to pass in its present form.  The more work that gets done and added, the less I like it.

    I'm for universal health care, a system like Canada, England, or France.

    I don't know enough about the netherlands or Switzerland's policies, but this mess doesn't seem like either one.

    I don't think a bad bill is better, considering how bad I think this one is. I'd love to think differently, but I don't.

    Some have asked it (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 09:29:00 AM EST
    I worry about how many people will needlessly die getting to what the people must have.  It's like another war, and when one side has experienced too much loss there is a surrender that can hopefully save the rest of us.  I cannot deal with mandates though along with some weakly "regulated" insurerance coverage.  I just can't do it.  It makes me ill to think about.

    'Take out...take out...take out' (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by SeeEmDee on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 07:42:35 AM EST
    How's this for a novel idea? Remove (as in 'take out') ol' Joe from his chairmanship?

    You don't leave a cottonmouth in the toilet because it will bite your arse every time. How many times do the Dems have to be snake-bit on their arses before they flush him?

    We can set our clocks (none / 0) (#5)
    by kidneystones on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:22:16 PM EST
    by Lieberman. Really. Joe isn't going to be close to content until Dems and Republicans realize what a dreadful mistake it was not to make Joe preznit.

    True. Joe still wants the Oval office and he's going to piss in the punch bowl of any other Dem sitting in the chair.

    Strange how easily folks forget how many pols are driven principally by a desire for power.

    Wanting the big job and as much power as he can grab is what gets Joe up. And he's not alone.

    At this stage all I'm sure of right now is that the insurance companies are going to get a whole bunch of new customers.

    Joe doesn't want power (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by CoralGables on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:47:21 PM EST
    he wants attention.

    Joe doesn't want power? (none / 0) (#8)
    by kidneystones on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 08:52:53 PM EST
    I think you're definitely correct about the need for attention.

    If you want to convince me that Joe doesn't want power, you'll have to come up with some proof.


    It's the most pathetic display (none / 0) (#12)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:26:21 PM EST
    from a grown man isn't it?

    No, it isn't the most pathetic display (5.00 / 4) (#17)
    by Cream City on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 09:51:10 PM EST
    as the more power each of these players has, the more pathetic this is.  Now, who has the most power -- power that has been squandered away in this?

    Yes MT (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by CoralGables on Sun Dec 13, 2009 at 10:27:16 PM EST
    I agree with you. He has the personality of an emotionally insecure needy little boy.

    Then pass Joe's bill with 60 votes (none / 0) (#31)
    by s5 on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:02:13 AM EST
    And pass the public option and the Medicare buy-in under reconciliation rules with 51 votes. Everyone is happy.

    it would be unfortunate (none / 0) (#32)
    by cpinva on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:08:59 AM EST
    "It was a total flip-flop and leaves us in a predicament as to what to do."

    were sen. lieberman to have a tragic, yet non-fatal accident, making it impossible for him to continue with his senatorial duties, until he recovered, in 10 years or so.

    just sayin..................................

    Wishing physical harm on political (5.00 / 3) (#33)
    by Radiowalla on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:39:23 AM EST
    leaders is really stupid and crass.

    VERY ugly post (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 12:47:20 AM EST
    It makes you look very bad.  We do not wish harm to people because they disagree with us.  It's ugly, crass, rude, immature, and just plain wrong.  

    Well (none / 0) (#37)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 02:17:02 AM EST
    I think someone should give your lecture to the politicians who wish to harm all of us for the sake of their corporate fundraising.

    Remember Lieberman is the guy who effectively wants to prevent people from getting the few crumbs that Congress is attempting to offer ordinary citizens so they can get healthcare...Lieberman wants to effectively watch Joe six-pack die without even decent care, of cancer or heart failure or whatever, while his families suffer both emotionally and financially.  How much more crass and horrendous can a person get than that?  As I see it, wishing evil on people like Joe Lieberman is simply reciprocation...and in a lesser form than the one he's using.

    He has all the power.  He is the one who can do the most damage.


    Err (none / 0) (#38)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Mon Dec 14, 2009 at 02:17:48 AM EST
    his family, not families....my usual sloppy editing.