Pack up the tents, the circus is leaving town. After a year of craziness, hyperbole, lies, bad behavior, and grandstanding, health care reform is a done deal. Sure there will be some residual threats, from politicians, pundits, and teabagging pukes, but this one is essentially done.
The Republicans tried to derail the reconciliation bill by throwing amendments at it, but ultimately it passed out of the Senate with minor changes (for student lending), went back to the House, and the House quickly passed it
. Now it awaits President Obama's signature, which is a given.
The Republicans are threatening to try to undo the new law, but I am guessing that effort will be short-lived. As President Obama said: "Go for it"
"My attitude? Go for it," Obama said, in remarks which marked the unmistakable opening shots in November's mid-term congressional election campaign in which Democratic control of Congress will be on the line.
"If they want to have that fight, we can have it because I don't believe the American people are going to put the insurance industry back in the driver's seat," Obama said in a sports arena at the University of Iowa.
That's exactly right - who in their right mind is going to want to revert to a system where a private for-profit company gets to decide if you are going to get coverage?
There are still the threats and violence from the whack-jobs, although they may be waning. Rep Eric Cantor (R-VA) had spoken out against the violence after a bullet went through the front window of his Richmond office. However, it appears that the shot wasn't deliberate
Richmond police say the bullet that hit a window of Republican Virginia Congressman Eric Cantor's office had been randomly fired skyward.
So essentially, some idiot shot a gun into the air (likely as part of a celebration) and it fell to earth in it's natural parabolic curve and hit the window of his office. I don't think I find that any more reassuring. Remind me to stay out the neighborhood where his office is located.
Rep Weiner (D-NY) had a packet of white powder mailed to him
with a note saying "drop dead". The powder was determined to be harmless (how would a teabagger get anthrax anyway?) Here's hoping that's the last of it.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has decided to take the high road in all of this by declaring that Republican lawmakers are not to blame
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said GOP lawmakers aren't provoking a recent spate of threats against lawmakers over their healthcare vote.
Pelosi echoed Democratic leaders' call for leaders in both parties to disavow threats of violence against members of Congress for their vote on healthcare. But she said Republicans weren't to blame for the threats, which have prompted Capitol Police briefings for Democratic lawmakers.
"I don't subscribe that these acts sprang from any words of my colleagues," Pelosi said during her weekly press conference on the Capitol.
"It's inappropriate for members of Congress to cheer when these sentiments were expressed in the gallery," she added, making reference to GOP lawmakers who cheered protesters against the health bill who disrupted House proceedings on Sunday. "That's different from saying they provoked it."
A fair number of Republicans are starting to come out more strongly against the threats, racism, etc., so it likely will stop. The futility of it will sink in as the anger and disappointment dissipates.
So while the sting over the loss is sharp right now, that will quickly fade as new legislation is brought up in Congress. Financial regulation is right around the corner (finally!
), and that should prove interesting. The Republicans have spent the last 2 decades unraveling financial regulations, and the results were disastrous. This is something the American public wants, and the Republicans know that voting against financial reform will look worse for them than voting against health care reform. That's the next stop for the big circus, and the elephants are already on the move.