I’m a little wary of some of these “likely nos” we’re hearing a lot about lately. If some of these endangered Democrats are going to flip to Pelosi’s side after voting “no” last fall, the last thing they want to do is hint that they’re flipping and make themselves targets for attack ads, tsunamis of calls from constituents, etc.
In other words, if Obamacare passes, it’s going to pass because a bunch of Democrats who went on and on about how deep their concerns are and how troubled they are suddenly make their peace with the bill.
Among those whose “no” vote I wonder about:
Dennis Kucinich, Ohio: He’s getting the full Obama treatment in Strongsville this afternoon.
Steve Driehaus, Ohio: Yes, he sounds pretty solid, but he’s already taken one near-suicidal vote on cap and trade.
Any Democrat from Illinois.
Any retiree, obviously.
Baron Hill, because anyone who’s that much of a jerk to his constituents at a town-hall meeting can’t be that worried about ignoring them.
A reader adds:
It’s in members’ best interests to stay undecided as long as possible. They don’t want angry voters with pitchforks at their office doors, but they also don’t want Rahm tracking them down in the shower. That’s why so many are now “waiting for the final language.” When the final language comes out, they will undoubtedly “need time to read and review it.” Then they will go into hiding until the actual vote.
With the rigid timetable that Pelosi has put in place, I think she will likely have to open the vote without knowing the outcome. The pressures on these Democrats will be tremendous from all sides, but I think Pelosi is likely to either win by a single vote or lose by 20.