1. Reid has made the threat so many times now, it's not news.
2. Baucus' backing off his bill's basics, now, that's a scoop.
3. And it's not pleasant copy for the president nor his party.
4. Reconciliation on what, Senator Reid, exactly what plan do you propose pushing thru via nuclear option?
5. Baucus will TODAY cut in half his penalty for BREATHING WITHOUT INSURANCE from $3800 for a family of four to $1900.
6. He raises the threshold for taxing "cadillac" benefit packages from $8000 for individuals and $21000 for families to $8750 and $23000.
7. He's willing to increase tax credits for low earners by 50B over 10 years.
8. The proposed changes, however, all increase the price tag of Baucus, negatively impact the Cost Curve, and/or increase the deficit.
9. And the pernicious provisions, most pointedly, which poison his piece as a political pill impossible to gulp are still present, not pulled.
10. Ie, the politics of the legislation remain essentially identical after Tuesday's messy markup.
11. For instance, there's still no public option, the absence of which is a put-off to Ms Pelosi and her pals in lower parliament.
12. And the Senate is still up against a hard deadline of October 15, after which Reid's readiness to use reconciliation is rendered rhetorical, ie, moot.
13. Liberal analyst Howard Fineman (Newsweek) on today's Countdown (hosted in Olbermann's absence by Lawrence O'Donnell) said it's going to take TWO WEEKS just to figure out how much these changes are going to cost.
14. Fineman on MSNBC summed up today's tidings thus---"Republicans are moving in for the kill."
15. Chuck Grassley, the ranking Republican on Finance, said dems are too interested in getting health care "right now instead of getting it right," which he finds "utterly and completely appalling."
16. Grassley is also worried that enforcement against illegals receiving coverage is not strong enough.
17. He's concerned as well about a generalization of funding for abortion.
18. Under no circumstances will Baucus get a single red vote.
19. Not so long as it possesses the president's imprimatur, Obama is that unpopular.
20. In short, Baucus cannot attract Rockefeller without repelling Landrieu, and vice versa.
21. The bill still mandates Americans without coverage must purchase for themselves medical insurance at a cost of up to THIRTEEN PERCENT OF THEIR INCOMES.
22. Were such a bill to pass, it would spell the end of Party Pelosi.
23. After today's arm twisting, Rockefeller announced that co ops are not "workable" and not a sufficient substitute for his precious public option.
24. The junior from West Virginia also, on behalf of labor at large, protests those painful impounds against plum perks, cadillac packages.
25. Ron Wyden continues to object to the mendacious mandate.
26. DiFi will still never support the passing of increased Medicaid expenses onto the already bankrupt states.
27. Reid too last week said for the same reason Baucus' bill was bad for Nevada.
28. This "mother of unfunded mandates" upon the states was NOT altered in markup today.
29. Funnyman Al Franken, speaking for Minnesota manufactures, objected to a $4B tax on producers of pace makers, prosthetics and artificial hips.
30. Finally, Mr Reid needs to know---if he even tries to reshape 16% of the US economy via loophole-like parliamentary procedure designed for emergency, short term budget agreements, he will see a March on Washington that will stretch FIVE MILES this time up Pennsylvania Avenue.
Reid Threatens 'Nuclear Option' to Pass Health Care Reform as Panel Starts Work - Political News - FOXNews.com
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid threatened on Tuesday to use a procedural maneuver to steamroll opponents of health care reform, even as a Senate panel began delicate negotiations over a package that could have the best chance at passing.
The Nevada Democrat, who has issued similar threats before, spoke as the Senate Finance Committee began debate over Chairman Max Baucus' reform plan. Reid threatened to use a budgetary tool called reconciliation -- also known as the "nuclear option" -- that would allow Democrats to pass key parts of the legislation with a simple majority, as opposed to the 60 votes needed to avoid a Republican filibuster.
"If we can't work this out to do something within the committee structure, then we'll be forced to do the reconciliation," Reid said, adding that he views that as a "last resort."
But the Senate Finance Committee pushed through tense and intensive talks Tuesday to reach common ground on the Baucus plan. Senators have filed 564 amendments, and on Tuesday afternoon Baucus released a slew of changes.