Thanks, Dan. That certainly explains the state of play in the House. As for the Senate, a reader, who is a former counsel to Senate leadership, answers my question from earlier this morning: Yes, the GOP could have pressed for a vote on extending the Bush tax cuts by blocking the “continuing resolution” that will now keep the government operating. The continuing resolution, the reader elaborates, was a regular piece of legislation and, therefore, subject to regular debate rules, including filibuster.
That is, to pull off such a strategy would have required keeping the GOP Senate caucus together. Clearly, there was about as much chance that the Senate RINO contingent would starve Leviathan of funds — even temporarily — as there was that GOP senators would strip their pal Senator Murkowski of her senior status on the Energy Committee: which is to say, zero chance. The Washington Times reports that the continuing resolution sailed through on a 69–30 vote.
Remember that as you listen to all the brave talk about repealing (and, of course, replacing) Obamacare. As I’ve said before, I’m not holding my breath — even if breath-holding is a preexisting condition.