While I was J Street yesterday, Sen. Lieberman decided to shoot off a warning shot at Democrats and the majority of the American public (audio here, via Ryan Grim @ Huffington Post). The emails I got on this one were classic. No one is surprised.
However, Sen. Reid was nonplussed for reporters.
“I don’t have anyone that I have worked harder with, have more respect for in the Senate than Joe Lieberman,” he said Tuesday afternoon. “ As you know, he’s my friend. There are a lot of senators, Democrat and Republicans, who don’t like part of what’s in this bill that we sent over to CBO. We’re going to see what the final product is. We’re not there yet. Sen. Lieberman will let us get on [to begin debating] the bill, and he’ll be involved in the amendment process.”
I think Mr. Reid needs to read Lieberman’s statement again.
“I told Senator Reid that I’m strongly inclined–i haven’t totally decided, but I’m strongly inclined–to vote to proceed to the health care debate, even though I don’t support the bill that he’s bringing together because it’s important that we start the debate on health care reform because I want to vote for health care reform this year. But I also told him that if the bill remains what it is now, I will not be able to support a cloture motion before final passage. Therefore I will try to stop the passage of the bill.” – Lieberman: Sure, I’d Filibuster A Health Care Reform Bill With A Public Option
Truth is, there are a few senators that won’t back the bill as it stands, so what it is now won’t be what it will be later.
But the real puzzlement is what happened in the House. How could Speaker Pelosi be so wrong about her count last week? She definitely telegraphed, even if she did say it explicitly, that she absolutely had the votes. Now she doesn’t.
Like everyone has been saying, this thing is fluid as flood water.