The House just passed the Senate health care bill by a vote of 219-212. It will soon be signed into law. Now they have moved onto the reconciliation measure which contains some “fixes” to health care bill and student loan reform.
10:54 pm – Republicans are going to offer a motion to recommit based on abortion language. It is a good stunt but abortion can’t really even be dealt with through reconciliation because of the Byrd rule. Republicans are calling this the most pro-abortion bill in decades (ironic because it is in realty the biggest lose for the pro-choice movement in decades. It is almost sad that the pro-life groups can’t even take joy in their own huge victory.)
10:59 pm – Steny Hoyer points out that this issue can’t be address using reconciliation.
11:00 pm – Bart Stupak (D-MI) speaks out against the motion to recommit. “The motion is really a last ditch effort” to deny Americans health care. “This motion does not support life.”
11:02 pm – Hoyer urges members to vote no on the motion that will in reality have no effect.
11:03 pm – A 15 minute vote on the Republican motion to recommit is now taking place. (The motion if passes would effectively kill the reconciliation package but the Senate health care bill will become law regardless.)
11:08 pm – 219 Democrats have voted against the motion to recommit.
11:18 pm – Motion to recommit fails 199 to 232.
11:19 pm – John Dingell ask for a recorded vote on the reconciliation package that “fixes” the excise tax and reforms the student loan system. A 15 minute vote is now taking place.
(The President will make a statement about the House’s votes this evening at 11:35 eastern time. You can watch it here.)
11:30 pm – The reconciliation bill now has 217 votes so it will pass. It will then go to the Senate. (Very strange the reconciliation bill did not get more Democratic votes. It was mostly an attempt to delay the unpopular excise tax and strip the unpopular Nebraska Medicaid money “Cornhusker kickback.” What Democrats are actually choosing to vote against removing the “Cornhusker kickback?”)
11:35 pm – Reconciliation bill passes 220 to 211. Now Senate it is your turn.