Budget Reconciliation: Woulda, Shoulda, Coulda,
Chris Bowers of Open Left on Joe Lieberman‘s Coup d’nobody seems interested in standing up to him of the Senate Health Care refom bill:
Lieberman flip-flipped because he can. No matter what Lieberman does, the majority of the Democratic Senate caucus won’t do anything about it. Here is a quick review:
* When Lieberman left the party, and ran as an Independent against the Democratic nominee in Connecticut, most Democratic Senators gave him a standing ovation.
* When Lieberman endorsed John McCain, and campaigned with him throughout 2008, the Democratic Senate caucus overwhelmingly voted to allow him to keep his chairmanship.
* When Lieberman blows up a hard-fought deal on health care legislation, the Senate Democratic leadership immediately declares that circumventing Lieberman through reconciliation is still not on the table
Bowers adds that if budget reconciliation is not on the table after Lieberman yet again betrays them, then it never will be.
The budget reconciliation is actually a lot bigger then Lieberman, which is why they haven’t been willing to pull the trigger on using it. Even Conservative Dems have expressed public frustration with Lieberman, but that doesn’t mean they want to be bypassed themselves.
At the end of the day, I don’t see any possible scenario where any honest member of the Democratic Party looks backs at 2009 and is glad they refused to go with budget reconciliation on health care.