Will the Government Health Care Bill be Defeated? More likely than not

Stupak caves. The government health care bill will get passed.

UPDATE: Last night I said that as long as the existing "no" votes held, the bill would be defeated if one of these four (Davis, Mollohan, Pomeroy, and Tanner) switched to vote "no." Davis and Tanner have now said that they will vote "no." The Hill now lists Pomeroy and Mollohan as the remaining "undecided" votes, and I wouldn't be surprised if one of them ends up voting "no." What this means is that the Dems must now admit that they need the votes of those who don't think that the government should pay for abortion. The Dems are offering Stupak an executive order in exchange for his vote on the law, but that isn't a serious offer because the law is permanent and the executive order can be changed at any time. Everything now depends upon whether Stupak sells out or not. If I had to guess, I don't think that he will. His career would be over if he does, and an executive order can't trump a law. I still think that the odds are that the government health care bill will be defeated.

The very fact that Dems are still negotiating with Stupak shows that they don't have the votes to pass the bill.

Original post:

Based on published reports in the NY Times and The Hill Newspaper, it looks likely that the government health care bill will be defeated, but it is extremely close and one would think that the Dems can get their own party members to vote "yes." The Democrats started this Congress with an 80 seat majority so you would think that they could get anything that they wanted, but it is a testimony to how left wing their legislation is that they have developed bi-partisan opposition.

All that said, this chart is from the NY Times.

The Hill newspaper data that I will use below is from 10/20/10 at 7:27 PM. The NY Times claims that the totals are: 207 "yes" and 206 "no." If they are right and 10 of the 18 vote "no," the bill will be defeated. So how are those 18 likely to vote? Of the NY Times 18 (from 10/20), here is the breakdown from The Hill.

Berry, Boucher, Costello, Donnelly, Driehaus, Lipinski, Nye, Rahall, and Stupak are listed by The Hill newspaper as likely "No" votes.

Baird, Dahlkemper, Davis, Kanjorski, Kaptur, Mollohan, Pomeroy, and Tanner are listed by The Hill as "undecided."

Cuellar is listed by The Hill as "yes."

If both the NY Times and The Hill are correct, all the "no" side has to do is get one of the eight "undecided" votes. Let's call these eight the "undecided" from now on. Seven of the eight "undecided" votes voted "yes" on the abortion amendment. One of the eight are in really tough re-election races and three are in "leaning" Democrat districts. All of these four were "yes" votes on the Stupak abortion amendment, were in districts won by McCain, and in tough races (Davis, Mollohan, Pomeroy, and Tanner). Of those four, three also claim to be fiscally conservative "Blue Dogs" (Davis, Pomeroy, and Tanner).

Will two of these three or four votes vote "no"? It would look like these four should have a hard time voting "yes" on the government health care bill if they want to stay in office. Again, if both the NY Times and The Hill are correct, how this vote will go could well be determined by these four congressmen. These four are also slightly more conservative than the average Congressional Democrat (the average 2008 ADA score is 89 percent, Davis (80), Mollohan (85), Pomeroy (85), and Tanner (80)). Other undecided congressmen could also vote "no," but these four would seem to be very likely candidates to supply the one vote needed.

Davis, Mollohan, Pomeroy, and Tanner

UPDATE: As of at least 10 AM, the Dems apparently didn't have the 216 votes that they needed.

"We don’t have a hard 216 right now," Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) said during an appearance on "Fox News Sunday."
She did express confidence that Dems would hit the number, adding, "I firmly believe we will have 216."

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) told NBC’s "Meet the Press" that “there are still members who are looking at it and making up their mind, but we still think there are going to be 216-plus votes when we call the roll.” . . .

On the other side, Dems seem to think that a promise by Obama not to use the money for abortions will be enough to get Stupak and other Dems votes. It is hard to believe that Stupak thinks that this is a good deal, but if he does this, he is caving. On the one hand you have a law that allows government funded abortions and on the other side you essentially have a promise from the president not to do it. If Obama changes his mind or you have another president, where will Stupak be then?

House Democratic leaders are struggling to gain the 216 votes they need to win a healthcare vote on Sunday.

House Democratic leaders struggling to gain the 216 votes they need to win a healthcare vote earned two more crucial supporters on Sunday.

Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) announced she’d support the bill, saying she was convinced it would prevent federal funds from being used for abortion services.

Separately, MSNBC reported that Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) would vote for the bill.

Stupak earlier on Sunday had said he was close to a deal with the White House on an executive order on the abortion issue. The order would specify there would be no public funding for abortions in the healthcare bill. . . . .



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