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The spectacle of Republicans filibustering a strong health care bill could be the best thing ever for the Democrats.

Harry Reid knows he's got at least 51 votes for a health bill with a strong public option. And he's got at least 55 votes for cloture. Imagine a strong health care bill on the floor of the Senate, with Republicans reading from the phone book to stop it. The pressure on the recalcitrant Democrats would be overwhelming. The opposition to cloture would collapse, possibly even with some Republican support. The Democratic party (and the President if he's willing to pitch in here) would be heros. The 2010 mid-terms and the 2012 election would be a breeze.

Originally posted to mfriedman22 on Wed Oct 21, 2009 at 01:41 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    Mark Friedman Author "Trying Hard Is Not Good Enough"

    by mfriedman22 on Wed Oct 21, 2009 at 01:41:46 AM PDT

    •  My theory is as follows: (0+ / 0-)

      No matter who controls the legislative branch, the majority party uses the "avoid a filibuster" excuse as a fundraising tactic.

      "Well, if only we had enough money to elect 60 senators we could pass legislation to overcome Democratic obstruction" -- which is what was basically said in a GOP fundraising letter.  It really pissed me off when I read that, as if it was MY fault that I didn't give them enough money.

      Now that we've seen 60 Senators for the first time in many decades in charge, they still find ways to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

      You need 41 votes for a filibuster.  The opposition party only has 40.

  •  here if the flaw (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HylasBrook, Kylopod

    a filibuster gives the republicans hours and hours and hours of non-stop coverage. they get to keep repeating their message over and over for however long they feel like talking. not only on the floor (cspan) but every cable network.

    dems will be able to say back - we just want a vote - but while it is true, and a good argument, it wouldn't play well in the world of PR.

    plus, harry reid doesn't have the balls to call their bluff

    •  It's mostly Reid's lack of balls (n/t) (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sceptical observer, HylasBrook
    •  Let them do it (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      luckylizard, HylasBrook

      Let them explain to America why they think we SHOULD NOT get affordable and universal healthcare.

      That will go over REAL well and surely will help them win elections in 2010.

      This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

      by DisNoir36 on Wed Oct 21, 2009 at 05:32:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, Reed needs a cohones transplant (0+ / 0-)

      for sure.  I think the specticle of a bunch of southerners (which is what most of the Republicans are) going on and on, stopping ALL business would be, in the end, a plus for Democrats.

      Remember when the Republicans tried to shut down government in 1995?  Clinton let them & all of a sudden, politicians from all over the country started bitching - because they needed the government services the Republicans had stopped.

      I suspect there are a few Republicans that aren't totally stupid (one would hope) who realize that they can continue a verbal opposition to health reform.  If it doesn't work, they can say "I told you so."  If it does, they can just keep quiet & hope voters forget they were against it, but that actually stalling health reform indefinitely is not a total win for them.

      I don't know why our senators voted for such a wimp as Minority/Majority leader.

      The land was ours before we were the land's...Robert Frost, The Gift Outright

      by HylasBrook on Wed Oct 21, 2009 at 05:45:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Your comment masquerading as a diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TerribleTom, HylasBrook

    has so many flaws.

    First, there would not be the type of filibuster you imagine.

    Second, there are not enough Republicans to engage in the type of filibuster you imagine.

    Third, you think the Republicans are too stupid to understand that if they caved they would hand the Democrats and Obama a major victory ensuring electoral success in the future?  Why would they ever "cave"?

    When did Fox News become a parody of The Colbert Report?

    by Endangered Alaskan Dem on Wed Oct 21, 2009 at 03:07:08 AM PDT

    •  Maybe... but it needs to be said (0+ / 0-)

      I remember GOP mailers telling me I should donate to the RNC because they needed that "magic 60" number of Senators to break the so-called obstruction.

      Harry Reid should simply force the Republicans to read from telephone books and make them work for their principles.

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