Is a healthcare deal close? Maybe not

January 13, 2010

This compilation of opinion from the great Igor Volsky at the Wonk Room

- Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-NY): “Normally you’re just dealing with the Senate and they talk about 60 votes and you listen to them and cave in, but this is entirely different,” he said. “I’m telling you that never has 218 been so important to me in the House.”

- Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY): “We keep hearing them squeal like pigs in the Senate that they had a tough time getting to 60,” Weiner said. “Well, it wasn’t particularly a picnic for us to get to 218. Generally speaking, the Senate kabuki dance has lost its magic on those of us in the House.”

- Rep. Pete Defazio (D-OR): “They only got two votes to spare in the House. I think this will be a tougher negotiation than they think.”

- Rep. Emmanuel Cleaver (D-MO): “In spite of the fact that the news media is proclaiming this bill approved, I’m not in a position, based on everybody I’ve spoken with to agree with them. …I think what comes out may be disapproved and then in 30 days, when they bring something else forth — because we’ve never been this close before — but it may take a ‘no’ vote in order to get people back on board.”

- Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT): “This is no walk in the park. This is bare-knuckled policy and politics to get this done.”

A “senior House Democrat” told Roll Call that “no progress has been made this week on any of the key sticking points in the House and Senate bills, despite steady meetings with union leaders and the White House.” “There’s no agreement. No deal on anything. Nothing,” the lawmaker said.

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smokescreen

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