Republicans’ Reconciliation Fears Debunked

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Listen, I truly hope that the Dems don’t use the reconciliation process to try and get the health care reform bill passed. Why? Well, it seems if they took this path they’d have to break up the legislation in two pieces, the budget portion and the insurance reform portion. The budget they could do via reconciliation no problem. But the insurance reforms? Well, since they don’t have anything to do with earmarking money, this couldn’t be done via reconciliation. And so the breaking up of the bill. So there’s a good chance the second piece might not get 60 votes b/c Blue Dogs would be angry enough to simply say no.

Still, to hear Republicans talk…reconciliation is this scary new thing that’s never been used.

Well, surprisingly, the folks over at Fox News put the lie to that…

Let’s repeat that Judd Gregg quote against for posterity…

Reconciliation is a rule of the senate that has been used before for purposes exactly like this on numerous occasions. Is there something wrong with majority rules? I don’t think so. The point, of course, is this…if you have 51 votes for your position you win.

51 wins. From one of the more moderate Republicans in the Senate. And he’s right. Majority rules in everything, especially elections. Why not here? Why do we have to get to 60 votes in order to pass anything without giving the other side the option to block it indefinitely with procedural stall tactics?

Long story short, Republicans set themselves up for this during Bush and if Dems decide to go the reconciliation route, well, tough.