August 19th, 2009
03:00 PM ET
5 years ago

Cafferty: Should Democrats go it alone on health care?

 Join the conversation on Jack's blog.
Join the conversation on Jack's blog.

President Obama and the Democrats may end up going it alone when it comes to health care reform. Democrats say they now see little chance of getting Republican support - and point to lawmakers like Senator Charles Grassley, who they say aren’t serious about striking a deal.

The administration says it had hoped to get bipartisan backing - but it's looking less likely. Instead, they would have to get moderate and conservative Democrats on board.

Party leaders in the Senate may wind up using a tactic where they only need 51-votes to pass a health care bill… instead of 60. One Republican warns if the Democrats go this route - it would be "like a declaration of war."

Going it alone has pros and cons for the Democrats… It could mean crafting the bill they really want. For example, the public option, which the White House appeared to be abandoning this week, would likely be back on the table.

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Filed under: Cafferty File
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. RH

    Yes, the Dems should push through healthcare reform without the GOP. To anything else at this point would call their motivations into question – are they really out to revamp the system in a meaningful way to benefit the American people, or are they out to be seen attempting to do so?

    August 19, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  2. LYNETTE IN CA

    They should go it alone for healthcare and everything else! I don't trust people who have great health coverage, but don't want others, without coverage, to have it . What is wrong with them?

    August 19, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  3. pc

    If the unstable, belittling, critical, self-serving, lying REPUBLICANS don't care enough about the American people to work with President Obama, then, YES, the Democrats should go it alone. The only thing most Republicans want from President Obama is to see them fail, INCLUDING SARAH PALIN, who has started the lies about the Death Panels. She is such a liar and she is most certainly self-serving!

    Go Democrats! YES WE CAN!!!

    August 19, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  4. Ron

    Who cares if republicans vote or don't vote for public health care? WE put dems in charge to make this happen. We knew we couldn't count We're already paying for the uninsured, so why not consumate the marriage and lower costs for all along the way??

    Someone ought to slap the snot right out of the republican who said passing the bill would be "like a declaration of war". Doesn't that stupid fool know that people die in wars! What's he trying to say? Maybe, if republicans hadn't driven us into a war and lied about the facts and costs, they would still be in position to influence policy and laws. Right now, they are along for the ride. No one to blame but themselves. In this country, 51% still takes the cake. Get over it and wait your turn.

    August 19, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  5. Ron

    "...couldn't count on republicans to get this done..."

    August 19, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  6. Mac Texas

    On something this important we need both parties. Otherwise, we will continue to hear the misconceptions and the outright lies about the program for the next 100 years.

    August 19, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  7. Janice

    Who will they blame the failure on then?

    August 19, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  8. Molly Weasley

    You bet. Republicans decided at the very beginning that they wouldn't support anything President Obama proposed. Various Republican senators are saying no Republicans will vote for any reform proposal, no matter what's in it.

    Besides look at all of the times Republicans used the reconciliation process to pass tax cuts for the wealthy (during the Reagan and second Bush administrations).

    I still think Democrats will get 60 votes to stop a Republican filibuster.

    August 19, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  9. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    This matter is far too important to be railroaded through Congress using the reconciliation process. If a bill cannot be passed under ordinary rules, maybe it's time to start over again as some have suggested. Better do it right than let a one-term President rush a second-rate bill to burnish his thin resume and legacy.

    August 19, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  10. X

    The GOP have lost all credibility on the health care issue with their gun toting lynch mobs and Grassley's "death panel" lies. Why negotiate with them when they have no incentive but to undermine reform?

    August 19, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  11. eolufemi

    They gave the republicans enough time and rope to hang themselves. And of course they did, lying to their fringe about death squads and covering illegal immigrants. Time to move on and let the adults make grown-up decisions. The republicans have removed themselves from the conversation.

    August 19, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  12. jayanth Bekal

    Fraud & greed should come out of the current insurance.Government healthcare option is the right one. Who wants to keep Legally fraud insurance system in our country. Not me.

    August 19, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  13. B in Pittsburgh

    Yes. The Republicans don't give a hoot about trying to reform the system in any way, shape or form. They just want to kill any reform like they did in the 90s, and their actions over the past month have proven that they will go to any lengths to get this done, including firing up their less-than-intelligent extremist members to spout off lies about what the current proposals contain.

    I'm sick to death of the way the Republicans and right-wing extremists are behaving and the White House and Dems should not waste any more time putting up with their crap, and just move ahead without them.

    August 19, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  14. Mark from Canada

    Jack, of course they should, however, until they do, I'll stick with my Canadian government run health care..and remind my parents to keep making their regular trips back to Canada to maintain their eligibilty for their Canadian healthcare...while enjoying their retirement in Florida of course.

    August 19, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  15. Jacqueline Pitts

    Go Democrats, and Go President Obama, it is about time. I'M sick of the Republican party fooling around, You go President Obama, because they will never agree to any thing that you put on the table.

    August 19, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  16. Mike, Vancouver

    Absolutely, the Republicans don't want to play anyways. that is why Obama's team won the election. To give him the clout to bring in health care reform. They are labelled the party of "NO", I say they should be the party to "GO" into oblivion.

    August 19, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |