Health Care Vote: Will They Or Won't They?
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As House negotiators holed up late yesterday with the seven recalcitrant Blue Dog Democrats who are holding up health care reform legislation, someone leaked to Politico's Glenn Thrush a memo from a Republican staffer who claimed that Speaker Nancy Pelosi told staffers for House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, that there would be no vote before next week's recess on health care reform.
Confronted with the leak after she emerged from the talks, Pelosi simply said that no announcements had been made about the prospects for a vote.
Still, prospects for a House vote before the end of the week look bleak. Despite his threat to bypass his own committee in order to bring the vote to the House floor, Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman continued negotiations with the Blue Dogs last night in a meeting that went for almost seven hours.
The White House even broke out the big guns: Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, a.k.a., The Enforcer, was reportedly in the room for three and a half hours. No deal was struck.
Adele M. Stan is AlterNet's acting Washington bureau chief.