1. A Senate of Four (Landrieu, Lieberman, Lincoln, Nelson): Well, there's Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT). He says that the bill will change -- and significantly. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) says that he'd vote to prevent the current health care bill from being taken off the floor -- and has presented a list of demands to Sen. Harry Reid. No "CLASS" Act -- this is the federal long-term insurance care provision, which Nelson thinks is a Ponzi scheme. No abortion coverage... and no public option. Still, on This Week, he said that he's confident that the bill can be improved on the floor.
Republicans are calling the machinations that resulted in Sen. Mary Landrieu voting yes the "Louisiana Purchase," because Harry Reid promised her state about $300 million for Medicare. On Face the Nation, Sen. Jon Kyl mocked Landrieu: ""You haven't heard the Republicans say 'here is my price. "The American people don't like that. It should be on the merits."
"Rather than drop an issue that is so important to Arkansas working families and small businesses, I intend to vote to open debate on a health care bill that will undergo several changes in the days and weeks ahead," Sen. Blanche Lincoln wrote to supporters. Lincoln's vote made the C-6 prime real estate in the Arkansas Democratic-Gazette. Lincoln won a 72-hour reading period to study the final bill before passage.
2. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that he believes there are 60 votes in the Senate for some version of a public option.
Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH): "And I think, in the end, I don't want four Democratic senators dictating to the other 56 of us and to the country, when the public option has this much support, that it's not going to be in it."
And Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO)*, a freshman, said that a vote for health care reform was worth losing his seat over.
On Meet the Press, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), the number two boss in the Senate, said that the Senate bill would likely be modified: "We are open because we want to pass this bill," he said. He also said that the Senate bill must pass before the end of the year and was confident that it would.
3. Mitch McConnell, on State of the Union, said 85% of Americans would see a premium increase, triggering an immediate fact-check from the DNC. On Fox, Sen. Kit Bond said there was "no way" that seniors "are not going to lose health care." He's referring to Medicare Advantage, which would be cut under both the House and Senate bills...but the basic level of Medicare benefits (above which MA hovers) would be enhanced. Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) said that the GOP planned to read aloud the entire bill when debate begins after Thanksgiving. The core GOP argument now is that the bill would cause premiums to skyrocket, care to be rationed (Sen. K.B.H., on Meet, said that the new mammography guidelines were a preview of rationing under a Democratic health care regime) and that Medicare would be cut.) More on the new guidelines from Nancy Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure and Dr. Nancy Snyderman on Meet the Press. It's a fantastic panel.
4. The Hill, on what happens next. Four more votes, 60 votes needed for each. That's just in the Senate! Josh Marshall is optimistic: "For all the lessons unlearned & overlearned from '94, dems have taken 1 overwhelmingly to heart: 2 start & not to finish is suicide"
5. The video clip of the week: debating Tim Geithner.
Frank Rich on Sarah Palin:
Culture is politics. Palin is at the red-hot center of age-old American resentments that have boiled up both from the ascent of our first black president and from the intractability of the Great Recession for those Americans who haven't benefited from bailouts. As Palin thrives on the ire of the left, so she does from the disdain of Republican leaders who, with a condescension rivaling the sexism they decry in liberals, belittle her as a lightweight or instruct her to eat think-tank spinach.
6. Bonus: Glenn Beck's plan for voter mobilization in 2010. (told you so!) -- voter drives, conventions, and more:
- I have begun meeting with some of the best minds in the country that believe in limited government, maximum freedom and the values of our Founders. I am developing a 100 year plan. I know that the bipartisan corruption in Washington that has brought us to this brink and it will not be defeated easily. It will require unconventional thinking and a radical plan to restore our nation to the maximum freedoms we were supposed to have been protecting, using only the battlefield of ideas.
- All of the above will culminate in The Plan, a book that will provide specific policies, principles and, most importantly, action steps that each of us can take to play a role in this Refounding.- On August 28, 2010, I ask you, your family and neighbors to join me at the feet of Abraham Lincoln on the National Mall for the unveiling of The Plan and the birthday of a new national movement to restore our great country.
*= Bennet is the bro of the Atlantic editor, James Bennet. No Bennet was harmed, or consulted, in the writing of this post.