Trying Castro Care
Submitted By Todd on March 16th at 11:37am
WE UNDERSTAND the administration's sense of urgency on health-care reform. But what is intended as a final sprint threatens to turn into something unseemly and, more important, contrary to Democrats' promises of transparency and time for deliberation.Wow. Big surprise, eh?
More worrying is that Congress and the country have yet to see the changes, for which Democrats hope to win quick House approval and which they then hope to speed through the Senate under a procedure that would bar filibusters. These changes -- the so-called reconciliation bill -- are not all minor "fixes"; some could have far-reaching consequences. Such changes deserve to be fully understood and debated before they are voted on.Fully understood? No one will fully understand the impact these 2700 pages will have - and, as Pelosi says, the only way to know is to put the thing into effect.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters Monday that she is leaning toward a parliamentary maneuver under which the House would vote on a package of changes to the Senate-approved reform bill, and the underlying Senate bill would then be "deemed" to have passed, even though the House had never voted on it.The entire process has been unseemly, going back to the attempt to pass the quaint old 1000 page measure in two weeks last August.
That may help some House members dodge a politically difficult decision, but it strikes us as a dodgy way to reform the health-care system. Democrats who vote for the package will be tagged with supporting the Senate bill in any event. Why not be straightforward about it?Straightforward? Cute.