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Reconciliation

Today, I tried to clearly explain how the individual mandate will work, made some predictions for health-care reform and lamented the right's rejection of Frum-ism.

Here's what I didn't get to:

1) CBPP wades into the debate over double-counting and doc fixes and health-care reform's true impact on the deficit.

2) Has the conservative American Enterprise Institute been muzzling its health-care scholars who agree with the Obama bill?

3) I'm down with shorthanding health-care reform as "The Affordable Care Act."

4) Since Glenn Greenwald keeps misrepresenting my “Twilight of the Interest Groups” thesis, I may as well link to this again.

5) I'll be on Rachel Maddow's show tonight about 9:20 Eastern.

Recipe of the day: Make your own matzoh.

By Ezra Klein  |  March 25, 2010; 7:10 PM ET
 
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Comments

Let's not make our own matzoh. (Sorry Bittman, I don't think Sardinian flatbread counts.) And let's not invite Glenn Greenwald to the seder, either. Next year in Costa Rica.

Posted by: JJenkins2 | March 25, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

So now the GOP in Georgia is trying to impeach their AG, a democrat, for refusing to sue over the new health law.

Any doubt now as to whether the GOP would impeach Obama if given the chance?

Is there any sane republican left in the country?

Posted by: Lomillialor | March 25, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

So, the big moment has come.

The final version of this current reform has now passed the house and senate.

While the NYTimes doesn't realize the scope of this moment, this is the moment, right now, when finally we've reached a politically sustainable genuine health care reform.

Cheers.

More American dollars will be going to the health care sector *just as was already going to happen*, but...a larger portion of those extra new dollars will come from those who got almost every bit of all of the new wealth of recent decades.

And it will create a platform for delivery reform to improve health care value.

More at my blog.

This is the moment, finally.

:-)

We've got a real beginning.

Posted by: HalHorvath | March 25, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the GOP would impeach Obama. Maybe I'm wrong, but that particular flavor of whackiness did not serve them well in the '98 midterms. Maybe they'll think it's worth a try. But I certainly hope they don't.

More obstruction on everything? That, I think, is a given.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | March 25, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

"More obstruction on everything? That, I think, is a given."

do you think the tide could be turning.....even a little bit?
all of the flame throwing and obstructionism delivered the republicans a mighty defeat.
maybe there will be a brave call among some of the less inflamed leaders, and more rational republicans... to "take their party back."
it would seem that any republicans that have not taken complete leave of their senses, would feel a sense of contempt for the hijacking of their party.
maybe things have gone so far over the edge, that the pendulum will start to swing back again.
arent there mainstream republicans out there, who are despairing over the insane fringe that has "taken over?"
aren't there enough of them, to become emboldened "to take their party back?"
there must be republicans out there, who are horrified by now...and want more reasonable and intelligent leaders who still see the virtue in working together to accomplish something, and strive for consensus.
i think there is timing, opportunity and motivation here for some brave republicans to step forward.

Posted by: jkaren | March 26, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

Ezra,

The Senate bill is law. The reconciliation sidecar has passed both houses and will soon be law. One more 20 twenty pen Obama signature, and it is all over.

THANK YOU for being the "go to" source for information, analysis, and debate on this huge legislative effort. I'll be staying right here for more on the coming policy fights, and huge thanks for the insight your blog and columns consistently provide.

I hope you get to take a VERY long weekend, and I hope that you make it back to Santa Cruz. If so, say hello to the banana slugs, and have a pint of Anchor Steam at The Catalyst.

Thanks for the daily hard work and invariably high quality of your reporting and analysis.

For the HCR LAW (not "bill"), "what a long, strange trip its been."

Posted by: Patrick_M | March 26, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

p.s.

...whatever happened to FastEddie007? Once the Senate bill passed in the House did he go to hunting for Hugo Chavez under his bed full time?

Posted by: Patrick_M | March 26, 2010 1:53 AM | Report abuse

jkaren,

No room at the inn in 2010 for the kind of Republicaan thought you mention, the party is clearly exhausting the inevitable consequences of an increasingly desperate dependence on essentially apolitical fringe groups.

Someday, there will be a rebirth around tradional political conservative thought, with grown-up politicians and intellectuals like John Danforth, Chris Buckley, David Frum, Andrew Sullivan, and many others who are currently ex-communicated.

But for now the Republicans are wholly owned by Fox News, the brainless tea baggers, Palin, Limbaugh, Beck, and all the other manufactured outrage against rational thought and social progress. But, desite all that:

yes we can!

Posted by: Patrick_M | March 26, 2010 2:07 AM | Report abuse

IN MEMORIUM

Others missing in action besides FastEddie007:

cpurick, bgmama50, cprferry (and others)...

all of whom knew ~with absolutely certainty~ that there was no pathway to passage of HCR, the votes were just not there (Blue Dogs! Stupak! John Murtha is dead!).

bgmama50 explained to us poor mental defectives that McCain would have quickly enacted HCR, that Obama was not a "fighter" like the fabulous political wizard John McCain, and that Obama was a phony whose various degrees and accomplishments were unearned. McCain had the great leadership to suspend his campaign, and force Obama "out of the weeds where he likes to hide" - yada yada yada.

Hello? Where are they all tonight?

Posted by: Patrick_M | March 26, 2010 2:47 AM | Report abuse

Kevin

Clinton's impeachment happened AFTER the 98 midterms. See link below. So while the American had sent the GOP a signal during the midterms not to impeach Clinton, they went and did it anyway.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_of_Bill_Clinton#Impeachment_by_House_of_Representatives

Posted by: Lomillialor | March 26, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

If the Repubs make significant gains in the elections this year, these are some of the things I predict may happen:

- the GOP will kill Obama's effort to work with the Russians to reduce nuclear stockpiles.

- the GOP will kill every USSC nominee and significant numbers of other lower level judicial nominees.

- the GOP will shut down gvmt on an (annual or more often) basis to coerce Obama into adopting as many parts of Ryan's plan as is possible.

- the GOP will have endless investigations into Obama's birth certificate and whether he is a muslim or whether he is a traitor to Israel and about how Iran needs to be bombed or invaded and how the USA needs to resist Russian militarism.

- the GOP will pull out of the deficit commission.

- as a result of GOP obstruction on jobs and stimulus bills, the economy will further stagnate in 2011 and 2012.

- the GOP will impeach Obama in 2012 during the election run up.

The GOP plan since 1994 has been to create chaos and tension in the electorate. They believe fear and confusion helps their cause to radically restructure America as a libertarian society. In the absence of fear and chaos, there is only rationality and calmness and no sense of urgency to change, and with a complicit media willing to increase the tensions in order to "sell newspapers" and reap major financial rewards because of competing advertisement battles, thoughtful and practical and calm politicians come across as weak and unfocused to the threats of the day. Obama succeeded in large part because of the timing of the sudden financial collapse just at the right moment and because Palin was widely seen as an incompetent choice. Were it not for those two factors, McCain would have defeated the "terrorist pal" Obama despite all the clear screwups and abuses of the Bush admin.

To drive home the idea about how radical republicans have become, look at this poll about how republican voters think about Obama....

http://news.yahoo.com/s/dailybeast/20100323/ts_dailybeast/7269_scarynewgoppoll

NEW YORK – On the heels of health care, a new Harris poll reveals Republican attitudes about Obama: Two-thirds think he's a socialist, 57 percent a Muslim—and 24 percent say "he may be the Antichrist."

Posted by: Lomillialor | March 26, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

"the GOP will impeach Obama in 2012 during the election run up."


i dont believe that this will or can ever happen.

i am willing to put money on this, although i am not a betting person.
whatever disloyalties appeared among the democrats toward president obama during the health care reform debate, there is a much greater personal stake that democrats feel in his presidency than at any other time that i can remember
.i think he is going to have many remarkable accomplishments in a beloved and landmark presidency.....and i think he has profoundly devoted supporters who will never, ever permit that prediction to occur.
any serious attempt at impeachment will destroy the united states, and cause more serious and dire chaos than an economic collapse, more than anything.

if there is a genuine effort at impeachment, i truly believe that all hell will break loose in the united states.

not going to happen.



Posted by: jkaren | March 26, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

"No room at the inn in 2010 for the kind of Republicaan thought you mention, the party is clearly exhausting the inevitable consequences of an increasingly desperate dependence on essentially apolitical fringe groups."


the other day, christopher dodd said that he feels some flexibility in the desire for more partisanship, from a few senators.
somehow, i didnt believe these were completely empty words.
i think this stunning defeat, is going to cause some senators to rethink the purpose of their service in the senate.
i think this stunning defeat can embolden some senators to break ranks and begin working to accomplish something.
i actually feel more optimism that this may happen.
if this glow and momentum continues to strengthen and surround the democrats, i think some republicans will reach out. nobody likes to be a loser, or feel they are chained to the "wrong" side, especially for people who work only in their self-interest. it is not pragmatic, and takes tremendous energy to keep swimming in negative waters, against the tide.
i feel a little glimmer of optimism.
this has been a miraculous presidency. good things can happen!

Posted by: jkaren | March 26, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

jkaren

None of the Republicans are admirers of or supporters of Obama. So that has no bearing.

A simple majority of votes in the House is all that is needed to impeach the President.

So if the GOP takes the House, which polling indicates will happen, the Democrats can not stop the impeachment if a simple majority of House republicans want to proceed.

Pls note that "impeachment" is not the same as the Senate "convicting" him.

Clinton was impeached by the House but acquitted by the Senate. Nonetheless, Clinton was impeached. This is what I predict will happen to Obama, because I don't think the GOP will win the Senate.

For skeptics, consider that Clinton was impeached, Gray Davis was recalled in CA, a Georgia AG (Democrat) is now being impeached for refusal to sue the fed gvmt over health care reform, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer was removed from office by Jeb Bush for trumped-up charges of which he was soon exonerated (grudgingly reinstalled afterward), Gov Perry threatened to secede from Union, GOP wanted to imprison Richard Clarke for Congressional testimony that later was proven truthful, Sen Inhofe has submitted a bill to imprison climate scientists for their opinions, polls indicate 50% of GOP voters want to impeach Obama, Bachmann wanted to investigate Dems for non-patriotic views, Texas conservatives have rewritten school books to sympathize with McCarthy (and include many other fringe issues while removing Thomas Jefferson), USSC has allowed corps to interfere in elections and have thrown out long-standing local gun laws and acted in a partisan manner to interfere in the 2000 election vote counting process.

The list of radical GOP "successes" and efforts are endless. When will "rational" liberals start realizing the GOP will do ANYTHING in their power to consolidate more power (and stop being surprised when it happens)?

Posted by: Lomillialor | March 26, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

lomilllalor

i appreciate your intelligence and facts here, and i think they must all be correct.
i know it sounds strange when someone disagrees, and cant provide a similar list of facts to support their position.
but in my heart, i know that the country would be thrust into total chaos if this were to happen.
i was an adult during the time of the clinton impeachment, and saw/understood what happened there.
this is a very different presidency. the devotion and appreciation of barack obama has spiritual roots, and the reaction of his supporters would be very different.
people would take to the streets in a way that we have not seen before.
the stakes would be too high. i simply dont believe that it can ever happen.
in spite of the unemployment, in spite of the tea baggers and their serious menacing, in spite of the hardship of the economy, people have been holding together.
there is a bigger group of suffering people than just the tea party goblins.
there is a country full of hardworking, reasonable people who do have faith in obama's presidency.
that see him as the last hope.
if serious efforts were made to impeach him, i believe that there would be an uprising so great, that it would not be worth the cost.
i cannot give you facts....but i can tell you that many of the millions of people who are quietly going about their lives, and voted and worked for him, would never stand for an impeachment.
it would be the final straw that would break the camel's back.
i just dont believe it will ever happen.
i dont even want to think about it further, because i really do believe that my prediction would be true, if there was ever such an impeachment.

i dont believe it will ever happen.

Posted by: jkaren | March 26, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

The list of radical GOP "successes" and efforts are endless. When will "rational" liberals start realizing the GOP will do ANYTHING in their power to consolidate more power (and stop being surprised when it happens)?

Posted by: Lomillialor | March 26, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse


every politician that ran against president obama, and all of their supporters, have done almost every conceivable thing to derail his nomination, his election and his works since he became president.
he rose against formidable odds.
they had power, influence, prestige, machines behind them...they tried every deceitful and lying scare tactic and humiliation they could do thwart every effort and the whole effort of health care reform, up until they had no more breath to do so.
we have watched everyone of them meet defeat.

i have enormous confidence and trust in the obama presidency.
the republican party is looking weaker and yes, sicker, everyday.

the republican party reminds me now of when dorothy's dog went behind the curtain and exposed a little, old man manipulating smoke and mirrors behind the scenes.
it was just a voice box and a puff of smoke.

Posted by: jkaren | March 26, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"CBPP wades into the debate over double-counting and doc fixes and health-care reform's true impact on the deficit."

How about the spending side? Were the initial predictions about Medicare spending accurate?

Posted by: kingstu01 | March 26, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

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