WH Apparently Supports Sidecar Reconciliation Fix For Senate Health Bill

One would hope that this ends the ridiculous debate regarding whether the House should "Pass The Damn [Stand Alone Senate health] Bill" (They never could BTW.) Ezra Klein reports:

I spoke to the White House over the weekend and they indicated that the president's package will not be a new White House plan, but a compromise between the House and Senate bills. That is to say, the White House expects that the House and Senate will have a compromise plan by February 25th.

That ends the whole "Pass The Bill" thing. It's Sidecar Reconciliation now.

Speaking for me only

< Sen. Evan Bayh Won't Seek Re-election | Digby's 'Is that All There Is?' >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    "Apparently?" Guess that's the (5.00 / 0) (#2)
    by Anne on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:05:21 PM EST
    operative word with Obama, since what is apparent today may not be so obvious tomorrow.

    One question: what's the difference between the "compromise" as discussed in Ezra's post and "sidecar reconciliation?"  If they're the same, why do they sound different?

    From Ezra's post that you linked to (my bold):

    Since this meeting will be most productive if information is widely available before the meeting, we will post online the text of a proposed health insurance reform package. This legislation would put a stop to insurance company abuses, extend coverage to millions of Americans, get control of skyrocketing premiums and out-of-pocket costs, and reduce the deficit.

    It is the President's hope that the Republican congressional leadership will also put forward their own comprehensive bill to achieve those goals and make it available online as well.

    As the President said earlier this week, "I'm looking forward to a constructive debate with plans that need to be measured against this test: Does it bring down costs for all Americans as well as for the Federal Government, which spends a huge amount on health care? Does it provide adequate protection against abuses by the insurance industry? Does it make coverage affordable and available to the tens of millions of working Americans who don't have it right now? And does it help us get on a path of fiscal sustainability?"

    With the president touting an insurance reform package and hoping the GOP will present its own comprehensive bill, I'm just not getting "sidecar reconciliation" - am I missing something?

    What I think I'm looking at is a compromise of a compromise of a compromise.

    "Does it make coverage affordable?" (5.00 / 0) (#5)
    by nycstray on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:18:18 PM EST
    I sure hope they are looking the costs increases coming up and not the soon to be old figures. Just read an article where it could cost a family of four 1800+ per month to insure their family soon in CA. That's just nuts. Can't wait to see what the insurers in CA think I can afford . . . .

    and yes, it does sound like a compromise of a compromise of a . . . .


    The MCM has reported on CA Blue's 39% increase (none / 0) (#11)
    by jawbone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:42:19 PM EST
    in premiums, with the kicker that the corporation could change rates at any time throughout the year! Sibelius responded with the now widely riduculed "sternly worded letter."

    Per Cabin Girl, commenting at Susie Madrak's Subruban Guerilla, her Philly Blue, Independence Blue Cross, sent her a premium increase notice of 39%.  So it's now from sea to shining sea -- huge Blue's increases.

    Another commenter said his increase was closer to 50%.  


    I will be joining the ranks of the uninsured soon. Not sure how long, but I can't handle the increases of previous years, much less what seems to coming down the pike.

    (MCM--Mainstream Corporate Media)

    Thank you, Corporatist Party members of both best known parties.


    I'm doubling my rent (none / 0) (#17)
    by nycstray on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:37:49 PM EST
    when I move and it's still cheaper than a family to insure themselves. I just don't see how on earth they think middle America can afford this. The article I read had 4 states getting the increases, which means all the others will follow and all the other companies 'to be competitive'.

    I hope they have plans to increase the subsidy pool significantly. I wonder how many people will be caught in that space where if they get a raise or better job offer, they have to think twice because suddenly they will be on their own paying for over-priced mandated insurance?


    This is what the White House said (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by Zorba on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:16:40 PM EST
    Over the weekend.  I expect another, different message from the White House in 3...2...1...

    Seriously...it's like political cha-cha. (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Anne on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:32:39 PM EST
    I just don't see anywhere in Ezra's post that Obama supports sidecar reconciliation; this so-called summit appears to be another opportunity to weaken an already (fatally) weak bill, and an excuse for Obama to listen to those good, Republican deficit-busting ideas...

    I think it is obvious (none / 0) (#9)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:34:18 PM EST
    The bill he will put out there as HIS bill will be the pacajge negotiated between the House and the Senate.

    Once you accept that premise, there is not other way but a sidecar reconciliation.

    I am not understanding your point here.


    I'm not accepting that this (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Anne on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:55:35 PM EST
    is anything more than another act in the kabuki theater that this entire so-called reform effort has been for over a year now.

    It seems clear to me that Obama will eventually talk the whole thing to the death it deserves, because with his penchant for compromise, I fully expect there will be nothing redeeming about the "compromise" package and even fewer will support it.

    Why anyone would think any form of reconciliation is a victory for anyone other than Obama - a victory that would have the half-life of a fruit fly - is beyond me.

    Process is meaningless when the substance sucks.


    This should mean (none / 0) (#10)
    by Salo on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:38:11 PM EST
    That the Senate will have to budge a little. Obama is either rolling the last dice on this or there's an agreement already struck.  

    Whatever it is (none / 0) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:43:41 PM EST
    If all they are changing is a comma, then the whole bill has to pass the Senate again.

    If you accept that premise (none / 0) (#14)
    by esmense on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:53:39 PM EST
    why is he providing a forum for the Republicans to present and sell their ideas?

    They won't be good ideas, but they will be very cleverly marketed, with every word and phrase poll and focus group tested to assure they sound plausible and appear to promise (although of course not deliver) what people want most, etc.

    Sigh. Sometimes I think the Democrats' earnest poly sci majors and lawyers are just no match for the Republicans' hardcore, cynical corporate marketers.  


    PPUS (none / 0) (#15)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:54:51 PM EST
    11 Dimensional Chess. etc.

    This has gone (none / 0) (#19)
    by Zorba on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 07:35:38 PM EST
    way beyond "11 Dimensional Chess," BTD, and into "Googolplex Dimensional Chess." I can't go there.  And I never bought into the post-partisan shtick, anyway.

    If it's the one they've been talking about... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by ek hornbeck on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:17:35 PM EST
    with no fundamental fixes, it's still pig lipstick.

    No Public Option, No Mandate.

    "No brains, no headaches," as (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by oldpro on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:27:21 PM EST
    my grandma used to say.

    Coulda been done by now. . . (none / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:01:51 PM EST

    Oh great a love triangle of bills. Yay. (none / 0) (#7)
    by Salo on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:32:06 PM EST
    Even more possibilty for gamesmanship and mischief.

    Where oh where are Bob and Ray (none / 0) (#13)
    by oldpro on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:50:35 PM EST
    when you really need them?

    (Actually, I'm collapsing in giggles right now just remembering the "Slow Talkers of America" routine!  Whenever I try to tell someone about it, I end up laughing so hard I can't finish the demonstration...)  

    Thank gawd for people who make us laugh...so few and far between these days.

    Law of unintended consequences (none / 0) (#18)
    by BTAL on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:28:00 PM EST
    Regarding the BC/BS rate increases, you are witnessing the same scenario as with credit cards.  The dems pass a bill that will crack down on issuing banks but give them a grace period.  The market responded.

    Dems don't know how to govern.

    Dems are just Polite Republicans (none / 0) (#20)
    by Salo on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 07:52:58 PM EST
    But of course the private cartels can get away with anything. There's no prospect of collective bargaining or universality infringing on them fleecing customers. That's a perfect freemarket at work. What's you problem with rate increases? It's just culling the herd.