Right Turn saw that one coming
On Monday morning, I wrote: "As for Pelosi, I suspect she won't even get a crumb. The Senate is due to vote on cloture this afternoon. If there are 60 votes (I'll bet the number will be at least 65), that is the only bill that's going to make it through the House."
Okay, so the number was closer to 85. But still, the magnitude of the Senate vote has forced House Democrats to give up the charade. The Hill reports:
A House liberal who has led the effort to stop President Obama's tax compromise with the GOP says efforts to change the package are futile.
Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), who just a week ago circulated a letter signed by 54 Democrats urging opposition to the deal, now says the "die is cast."...
Public opinion has turned in favor of the tax package, and the Senate on Monday overwhelmingly voted to move the tax deal forward. President Clinton also endorsed the deal after a meeting Friday with Obama.
Nearly 70 percent of those polled in a Washington Post-ABC News survey support the package negotiated by Obama with Senate Republicans....
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) on Tuesday signaled the House would not block the package.
"Obviously, there is strong support for moving ahead," Hoyer said. "Rarely do you see that big a number," he added in reference to the 83 senators from both parties, including critics of the deal, who voted to push it forward.
Liberal pundits imagined that somehow the House Democrats would cut a deal? But how, and with what leverage? Wishful conservatives thought that MItt Romney's opposition might pull away House votes. Oh, puleez. The notion that House leaders or members are going to be swayed by a potential contender with serious electoral issue of his own is, frankly, silly. (You'll notice there weren't any House Republicans who actually said that Romney's or Sarah Palin's opposition made any difference.)
A key House Republican's aide speculates that liberals will still vote no. But in the end it will make no difference. A broad cross-section of Democrats and Republicans will pass the agreement.
They can then begin to argue about the grotesque omnibus spending bill that Senate Democrats just released. John Thune (R-S.D.), yet another potential 2012 contender, declared:
"The attempt by Democrat leadership to rush through a nearly 2,000 page spending bill in the final days of the lame-duck session ignores the clear will expressed by the voters this past election," said Thune. "This bill is loaded up with pork projects and should not get a vote. Congress should listen to the American people and stop this reckless spending."
Would Obama, after taking pledges to renounce earmarks, even sign such a thing? We'll find out how the White House in its new centrist mode feels about one more load of pork. As you can see, with one fight nearly resolved, the next one is already on the horizon.
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