From The Hill:
The seven Blue Dogs on the Energy and Commerce Committee stormed out of a Friday meeting with their committee chairman, Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), saying Waxman had been negotiating in bad faith over a number of provisions Blue Dogs demanded be changed in the stalled healthcare bill.
“I’ve been lied to,” Blue Dog Coalition Co-Chairman Charlie Melancon (D-La.) said on Friday. “We have not had legitimate negotiations.
“Mr. Waxman has decided to sever discussions with the Blue Dogs who are trying to make this bill work for America,” Melancon said.
Although those Blue Dogs were supposed to be headed back into another meeting of the Energy and Commerce Democrats, their anger was visible.
If the two sides cannot reach an agreement, the only hope for passage of the bill in the House will be to go straight to the floor, an option leaders shied away from endorsing but said was an option.
But the Blue Dogs issued dire warnings to leaders contemplating that approach.
"Waxman simply does not have votes in committee and process should not be bypassed to bring the bill straight to floor,” Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.), the lead Blue Dog negotiator, said on Friday. “We are trying to save this bill and trying to save this party.”
Additionally, Blue Dog Democrats are not the only Democrats who would not pass the bill in its current state (if at all), according to Melconian, if the Bill were brought to the floor – there are other “Democrats” who are willing to vote “nay”. The President’s pit-bull, Rham Emanuel may be in for a surprise as he promised NRP that a vote would indeed take place next week. There has been some speculation regarding Emanuel’s powers of persuasion (backhanded tactics), that said, there is little he can promise lawmakers who must face a growing number of angry constituents, to make them change their vote. The worst case scenario is a failure to push this vote through the House, and/or an open revolt among the Democrats, will further damage Obama’s and the Party’s credibility.
What concerns American’s most about Government Run Health Care is not necessary the cost, but, more to the point, the idea that should this plan be similar to Canada’s plan, where the individual enjoys full coverage, but higher taxes as well as long waits for routine health care. It is not uncommon to wait 3 to 6 months for a routine health care visit, longer if one needs tests. As of July 22nd a Rasmussen Poll showed that only 20% of the American Public considers Health Care a priority, while, 53% of American’s polled clearly oppose the Health Care Act now in Congress.
Add that to the Presidents Daily Tracking Polls, which are clearly in a downward spiral, and one can understand what is motivating the Blue Dog and other Democrats from backing away from Universal Health Care.
Understanding that most, if not all, politician’s live by polls, the fact that they see their party losing ground in record time (six months into the Obama administration and 3 years of Democrat control of the Legislature), if they do not move the party clearly to the right, they stand to lose both the House and the Senate in 2010 – Obama is to Incumbent Democrats in 2010 as Bush was to Incumbent Republicans in 2006 and 2008. It would not be surprising therefore, to see those swing states where the Democrats won by narrow margins Florida, North Carolina, Illinois, Ohio (5 points and under) in 2008 flipping in 2010.
To read the full text of the HR3200 – go here