Monday, March 22, 2010

Well that was fun

As anyone who has glanced at a newspaper this morning knows, the Senate HCR bill passed the House last night 219 votes to 212 in a scene you would not exactly call a bipartisan love fest. After the debacle of the Scott Brown election and the despondency that immediately followed; this feels pretty damn good. A better human being than me would not engage in rank schadenfreude... especially given how recently the shoe was on the other foot... but my oh my, don't wingnut tears taste delicious?

Anyway... Obama should sign the Senate bill in the next couple of days, and then the Senate votes on the reconciliation fixes (where 50 votes are needed, and allegedly already committed). Obama then signs that, and it's officially over... but make no mistake, health care/insurance reform is a done deal right now. While I expect the GOP to stay unified in its obstructionism, all of the reconciliation fixes heading to the Senate are quite popular and hard to vote against... so it shouldn't be hard to hold 50 Democrat votes together.

Only 14 months of insanity... and yet it felt like 14 years. But, yes, totally worth it... even if it doesn't give every liberal a pony... since it's the most progressive piece of legislation we've passed since LBJ's Great Society. I'm not sure I'm ready to crown Obama yet, but certainly I can't think of a more effective Speaker than Nancy Pelosi.

Also, if you're curious as to what will change in the first year (since most of the big stuff doesn't kick in until 2014), Ezra has a rundown. My guess as to what's the most important for November? The "the ability to keep kids on their parents' insurance until they're 26"... that's going to be pretty popular in suburbia, no?

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