To fix healthcare, the GOP has to nuke the legislative filibuster …

The past couple of weeks of Repeal & Replace has been annoying along several dimensions.

Foremost, all of the chatter has been about health insurance, not healthcare … just fiddling with who is going to get stuck paying … moving nickels around.

Woefully little talk about how to improve healthcare delivery.

That’s not surprising since the Senate’s fillibuster rules require 60 votes to pass any legislative action.

Keep in mind that Obama had 60 Senate votes in 2009 and 2010 … thanks to the DOJ sidelining Ted Stevens and Al Franken pulling a narrow upset in a disputed election.

Today, there are 48 Dems who reliably vote in lemming-like lockstep against anything the GOP proposes.

Even if centrist Dems were to band together with moderate GOPs,  the middle-of-the-roaders wouldn’t have enough votes to get a sensible proposal enacted.  It would be squashed by either the ultra-conservatives or the ultra-liberals.


So, the GOP-controlled Senate has its hands tied … it has to work through the “reconciliation” process which, by definition, just moves nickels around.

I think its time for McConnell to go nuclear…


Why not?

I don’t buy either the “deliberative body” or “rights of the minority” arguments.

I remember Chris Matthews preaching a few years ago in favor of “majority rule” when the GOP was blocking Obama

Those concerns didn’t stop the “Reid Rule” nuking the filibuster on Federal judges … of stop the GOP from nuking filibusters on Supreme Court justices.

I also don’t buy the “what if Dems win a majority” argument.

Memo to McConnell: the Dems will nuke the legislative filibuster if / when they get back in control of the Senate.

If the GOP nukes the filibuster, they’ll have the responsibility to craft some real healthcare reform … and maybe some Dems will help fix the problem.

Worth a try … otherwise, they’ll just keep pushing nickels around.


P.S. Though pundits disagree, I think McConnell will do it.  If he doesn’t, he’ll go down in history as one of the least effective Majority Leaders in history.  Not exactly the mantle he wants to wear.



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