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Explanation on Recon Bill

March 15, 2010

This is what the Donkey’s intend to do.

Who knows if this is Constitutional or will pass parliamentary muster, but these are their procedural intentions…

They’ve posted their proposed Reconciliation Bill. This bill will have to make it through the House Ways & Means or Finance committee. Likely the Budget Committee.

Then, after some changes are presumably made, it will be brought to the House floor without debate, for an up or down vote – that is within the power of the Speaker.

This reconciliation bill, when it comes to the House floor, will contain – in theory – a self-executing rule that will deem the original Senate Health Care bill passed by the House when the Reconciliation Bill is passed. That original health care bill (H.R. 3590) will then travel to the President’s desk for signature.

In the meantime, this Reconciliation bill will travel to the Senate where it will go through the Reconciliation Bill process. After they clear the blood from the Parliamentarian’s office, the Senate will vote on this Reconciliation Bill, and it will then be sent to the President for his signature.

With it’s passing and signing into law, the Reconciliation Bill makes – again, in theory – changes to the original Senate bill (H.R. 3590), that the House liberal Democrats didn’t like – such as the Cadillac Tax, for instance.

“I need clarification. I understand it to be that the original Senate bill will be deemed passed when the new House bill becomes law. Is that correct? I still don’t like the “deemed” part but it would buy us some time to fight it.”

No, the original Senate bill (H.R. 3590) will be deemed passed when the House votes on this – and presumably passes – this Reconciliation Bill that they’ve just posted.

You would then have the original Senate bill (H.R. 3590) passed by both Houses of Congress, and available for the President’s signature. There have been some whispers that Nancy would hold onto the H.R. 3590 until the time that the Senate passes the Reconciliation bill.

The Speaker can (and does from time to time) hold legislation. In fact, the Speaker can hold it for a year, or until the session ends, whichever comes first. Of course, this raises the legal dilemma of “can a Reconciliation Bill be voted on before the original legislation actually becomes law. That is the problem which will probably be worked out in the Supreme Court, if they elect to hear such a case.

“So what is the bill that was posted tonight?”

It’s just a “shell” bill. The vehicle they need to get the process started. See here for further explanation. The posted bill is a procedural step, it DOES NOT make the substantive changes yet to the Senate’s bill.

It’s not the FINAL Reconciliation bill, but one from October, which will be gutted by the Democrats and replaced with the language of the FINAL Reconciliation bill – which hasn’t been crafted yet.

Michael O’Brien of The Hill points out that “the bill is a procedural step, it DOES NOT make the substantive changes yet to the Senate’s bill.” These recommendations were first proposed in October by the House Ways and Means and Education and Labor Committees (so the public option is still in here).

Philip Klein, Washington Correspondent, The American Spectator, reminds us what GOP Rep. Paul Ryan warned us about last week of the Dems’ strategy ramming this “shell” HC Bill through committee tomorrow. The budget committee approves the shell, sends it to the rules committee, then strips out the language and stuffs the actual reconciliation changes into the burrito, Klein explains.

In other words: What you see is the tortilla shell fake-out.

“What’s the difference between voting to DEEM something passed and actually voting to pass something? Would the American people really fall for semantics like that?”

A sizable percentage of the American public couldn’t define the difference between a Senator and a Representative.

Will it make a difference? It will certainly make a difference to people who are politically engaged. To the people who spend their days watching Oprah and Jerry Springer, it’s completely over their head.

Thank you public education system.

“Ok, what is The Slaughter rule?”

The Slaughter rule……

Would declare that the House of Representatives “deems” the Senate health care bill “passed” by the House.

House members would have to vote on whether to accept the ‘rule’, but would then be able to claim they only voted for a ‘rule’, not for the bill itself.

In other words, Democrats will avoid a direct vote on the health care bill while allowing it to become law.

They will take over one-sixth of the US economy without voting on it in direct violation to the legislative process defined by the U.S Constitution as Article I, Section VII, Clause II specifically states.

“Is this Constitutional, or can SCOTUS kill it?”

Let’s divide the legislation itself from the process. The legislation (once and IF enacted) will likely face Constitutional challenges, many of which could prevail given the current makeup of the court. Some things in this bill are plainly unconstitutional.

The process in which this is actually passed, is an entirely separate matter. The Judiciary is HIGHLY RELUCTANT to interject themselves into matters involving the internal workings of the Congress. There is some indirect precedent, namely Powell v McCormack, but nothing has ever been entertained on a question of pure parliamentary procedure. While it’s possible the Supreme’s would hear such a challenge, I think it’s probably unlikely.

Let me hedge myself here… I think it could be ‘possible’ that they’ll intervene, I’m just not sure it’s ‘likely’, given the makeup of the Court, Powell notwithstanding. Of course, Roberts has made it clear that he has no patience for Obama, so that’s a wild-card.

Also, situational circumstances aside, who really wants the prospect of SCOTUS inserting themselves into this mess. It would be the biggest reach for Judicial power since the days of Marbury.

Even if this does get enacted, and the Supreme’s take a pass on reviewing the legislative ‘process’ with respect to this law, I believe that there are PLENTY of cases to be made that large provisions of this bill – on its face – are completely unconstitutional.

The question becomes who is the “injured party?” Raise your paw.

“What about the student loan nationalization add-on?”

Go to Michelle Malkin’s site for information. Click here.

“And, how will the Dem’s defend themselves in November?”

They are trying a trickery procedure so House members can go back and say: “We didn’t vote on the HC Bill. We just ‘deemed’ approval of the Senate bill, but I didn’t vote on it.” In essence, they are trying to convince the American people that they are stupid and that approval occurred without voting for it. You cannot make this stuff up.

“Does The ‘Shell’ Health Care Bill Have Any Teeth?”

This is what RedState says: Click here. “

2 Comments leave one →
  1. March 15, 2010 8:58 pm


    Followed you ere from Veritas & Libertas. Well, not like “followed” followed. That sounded kinda psycho of me.

    I saw you at V&L…yeah.

    Nice to meet you. Hope to see more of you at V&L! Long Live the Republic!

    Donald aka Veritas

  2. March 16, 2010 2:40 pm

    Nice job Kelly. Very clear and concise.

    The big question remains though,what do we do to stop these folks?


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