Rep. Bart Stupak (D., Mich.), who yesterday called the abortion language in President Obama’s health-care plan “unacceptable,” said that between 15 and 20 Democrats could not support the president’s plan as a result of that language and the remaining “Cadillac Tax” on high-cost insurance plans.
Stupak said of the White House compromise on the Cadillac Tax:
The delayed implementation of that tax – to 2018 in the Obama version – only makes matters worse, Stupak said. Now, some House Democrats are wondering why they should vote at all on legislation that would not take effect even during a second Obama term.
Things are equally shaky on the Senate side:
In the Senate, Democratic leaders estimate that seven or eight members of the Democratic caucus are either opposed to completing the bill using reconciliation or are unsure of their support for it, a senior Democratic aide said. That would leave the Democrats with barely enough backing.
“I don’t prefer reconciliation,” said Sen. Joseph Lieberman, a Connecticut independent whose vote was among the most difficult to win when the Senate passed its health bill last year.
Sen. Ben Nelson (D., Neb.), another waverer who ended up voting yes last year, said his support for reconciliation “depends on the underlying legislation. If it’s good legislation, then the process is necessary.”