According to the news this morning, Pelosi has come up with a way to totally avoid an actual vote on the Health Care/Student Loan bill. As far as I can determine, she wants to acknowledge the Senate bill as read via a simple "procedural" vote, thus avoiding the difficulty of actually honoring the US Constitution.
I am sure that this is within the rules of the House. But I am equally certain that the rule was never intended to slide a major piece of legislation through the House without an actual vote.
Once upon a time, I was in favor of reforming the health insurance industry. I wanted to see some changes. Not punishment, but changes. Unlike so many in Congress, I am not challenged by the idea that a company exists to make a profit. I get that. My company exists to make a profit. I just wanted the insurers to be held to the rules and forced to treat people fairly. Now, however, with all the garbage in the bill and all of the late night tricks from both sides, I have to be opposed to it. I am not happy about it, but I am honest enough to be able to say that what they propose is wrong and bad for everybody.
Which brings me full circle. The House "leadership" on both sides is basically stalling and trying to avoid an actual vote that they might have to be responsible for. Put in less pleasant terms the 435 cowards who pretend to work there would prefer to slink away from this and just blame someone else.
On the one side, we have the Democrats who are pulling every procedural loophole out of the bag to pass this bill and the other side features the Republicans who have promised to use every procedural loophole to prevent passage. On other words, none of them want to actually vote this thing. They just want to be able to declare some kind of victory and toddle off to the bar.
The only victory I am interested in is the one that replaces the entire House of Representatives with new people. These 435 are so sold out, they are no longer capable of the simplest thing - voting on legislation - without tugging on the leashes of their corporate masters.
For shame on Pelosi for even suggesting this kind of a stunt and for shame on Boehner for not calling for the vote now.
This is no longer about health care, financial reform or even basic legislation. This is now about the simple and stated fact that our Congress has chosen to operate outside Article 1, Section 7 of the Constitution: "But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively."
In other words, a vote!