Ezra Klein explains why Democrats can't simply use budget reconciliation—the mechanism for passing fiscal matters with only 50 votes, about which we heard so much during the legislative fight over health care reform—to have their way on the Bush tax cuts:
When George W. Bush passed his tax cuts through budget reconciliation, Democrats were horrified. ... So when they took back power, they decided to prove their commitment to fiscal rectitude by passing a new rule: Henceforth, budget reconciliation could only be used for legislation that would reduce the deficit.
Read the full post at The Washington Post.