Right now, Democrats don't have the 60 votes needed to enact health-care reform.--It's clear to many Democrats that they'll need Republican support to enact President Obama's health-care reform. With Senators Kennedy and Byrd sidelined by illness, Al Franken not yet seated, and two more Democrats on record publicly opposing the public option that the president supports, the majority currently has about 55 votes—short of the magic 60 needed to avoid a bill-killing filibuster, according to Sen. Kent Conrad of North Dakota, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee.Howie P.S.: I like that UPS/FedEx--post office analogy. This article in the WaPo refers to "Sniping Among Liberals" that "May Jeopardize Votes Needed to Pass Bill." I didn't know Ben Nelson was a liberal. I also like Clift's questions
At the White House, policymakers envision a public option that would coexist with private insurers in the same way that UPS and FedEx compete with the post office, or the way that 401(k)s supplement Social Security. There would still be a vibrant private marketplace. White House support for a public option is strong. It's the political will that's uncertain.
Do Democrats want to get 80 percent of what they want with 51 votes? Or will they settle for 51 percent of what they want in order to get 80 votes?Barack Obama