From NBC's Kelly Paice
The race is on to get health care passed before Christmas, but will Democrats pull it off? Conservative bloggers today are not counting on it, especially with the Republicans' attempt to slow down passage by reading a 767-page amendment on the Senate floor today; and, some say even if Dems do push a health care bill through, Republicans will retaliate.
Weekly Standard's William Kristol hits at the Dems' push for health care reform: "The Senate Democrats' legislation is a Medicare-cutting, tax-hiking, no-real-reform, 2,000-page monstrosity opposed by the majority of the American people. The only winners would be Big Government, Big Pharma, and Big Insurance." And Kristol offers some plausible GOP responses if the opposing camp's bill passes: "Republicans should say: No, No, a thousand times No. And if the legislation passes, the GOP should immediately begin trying to repeal key parts of it. ... And of course they [Republicans] should promise to relieve the American people of the prospect of living under the Democrats' health bureaucracy regime by promising repeal of the whole thing in 2011."
And RedState writes today, "Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) objected to the the unanimous consent request that the 'reading of the amendment be dispensed with' when Senator Bernie Sanders' (admitted Socialist - VT) single-payer amendment (SA#2837), totaling 767 pages, was called up. According to one calculation, this could take 38 hours to read. It is notable that there are two co-sponsors: Sherrod Brown and Roland Burris. Now, THIS is how you fight the kind of assault on freedom this healthcare monstrocity represents. Leave no tool unused -- force the Democrats to face up to an American people who overwhelmingly do NOT want this bill."
In his column, conservative commentator Hugh Hewitt weighs in on "Obamacare," as well: "Not surprisingly, the reason for optimism among opponents of Obamacare is the country's decisive rejection of the bill. Every poll shows strong majorities against it..." And Hewitt's take on how Democrats are handling their effort to achieve reform: "Rather than stage a tactical retreat and begin a genuine attempt at bipartisan agreement on the basis of common ground on health care reform -- of which there is a lot -- the president, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are attempting the mother-of-all-jam-downs...."
With all this, Hewitt suggests more liberal-leaning Democrats are not happy either, much to the doings of their party leadership: "Then there's the left wing that now sees their dream of the public option in ruins, and the consolation prize of an expansion of Medicare also on the junk heap. Howard Dean is calling for the scrapping of the bill in favor of a kamikaze charge at the reconciliation process. The abortion debate is still very much rankling the House radicals who lost that round as well. If anything is going to get through the Congress soon, it will not resemble the left's idea of health care reform. Some will mouth the words 'half a loaf' but their leaders will have failed them." Hewitt's reaction in a nutshell: "Democrats should go home and enjoy Christmas instead of playing Grinch to the seniors of America by passing this attack on Medicare. But they won't, because the president wants his 'legacy law,' even if it is built on the betrayal of every Medicare beneficiary as well as future generations burdened by the massive deficits built into Obamacare."
On RedState, Dan Perrin's prediction for health care reform: "My guess is that the progressives will post more than one NO vote from within the Democratic Senate caucus, and ObamaCare will die."
And a final note, today TIME magazine named their "Person of the Year" -- Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke. BUT GOP12 points out one who tops TIME's 2009 "People Who Matter" category -- the one and only Sarah Palin: "America's favorite Rorschach political figure is still going rogue, whether quitting her job as governor -- who needs a bully pulpit when there's Facebook? -- or spending her hour on Oprah dissing the 19-year-old father of her grandson. Will she run in 2012? Does it matter? In a Republican Party looking to be energized, Palin is the one drawing the crowds (even if they have to pay for a photo with her). She's their moose-huntin', 'you betcha'–spouting, partisan jabbing sweetheart."