Although there seemed to be a momentary lull, healthcare reform is again in the spotlight. As I surmised, it seems that president Obama will doggedly pursue this, even if the majority of the people are concerned with — or opposed to — the overall direction the reforms are headed.
This time, new approaches are being suggested and different strategies are being advanced. However, there is one possibility that no one is talking about, but which could come to fruition at any time and with little warning.
As I understand it, the House long ago passed one version of the bill, and the Senate another. The normal course of action is to send the two bills to a joint committee of the House and Senate to work on reconciling the differences between the two bills. The reconciled version would then be sent back to their respective legislative bodies for approval.
However, it is possible that the House could merely vote on the version already approved by the Senate. Healthcare reform would then be passed, without the Senate needing to vote on it (because they have already approved that version). Then the bill goes to President Obama and he signs it.
There are two reasons why I think this could happen:
1) The administration has already demonstrated their proclivity for cutting backroom deals to buy votes of on-the-fence Senators, so they would not be afraid to do so with borderline House members, and
2) House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, has made some very adamant assertions that healthcare reform will pass. This is a feasible means for her to do so that is within her control.
I hope that I’m wrong about this, but it could happen — and would be a sad day for our political system if it did.