In an interview on my radio show Wednesday, Arizona Senator Jon Kyl underscored the fact that Senate Democrats do not have the 60 votes they need to pass Obamacare, and that reports about the inevitability of Obamcare passing are part of the Democrat's strategy. (The transcript of the interview is here.) Kyl asserted that Harry Reid routinely announces, and then the MSM echoes, statements about the inevitability of the bill's passing, but then reality catches up.
This is happening again today as the premature reports of an agreement to expand Medicare to those 55 and older are exposed as more puff talk from a disappointed and reeling left that has seen its dream of a public plan take some serious blows in the past few days. David Drucker's and Emily Pierce's report in Roll Call (subscription required) conveys the difficulty facing Reid:
Democratic Senators involved in crafting what Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) described as a “broad agreement” on health care policy appear to be at odds over both the policy proscriptions and the notion that they had even reached such a deal.
Though Reid announced late Tuesday that negotiations among a group of 10 liberal and moderate Democratic Senators had largely resolved the intraparty standoff over the public insurance option, participants in the group said their “agreement” had been mischaracterized and that they agreed only to send the proposal to the Congressional Budget Office for a cost estimate, saying more information was necessary before making any firm decisions.
Seniors especially have to hope that the new deal falls apart as it represents a savaging of Medicare. The Obama-Pelosi-Reid assault on Medicare has three parts now.
First, Obamacare proposes to loot Medicare of about a half trillion dollars in benefits. Obamacare enthusiasts dismiss the devastating impacts to Medicare Advantage enrollees as necessary to rebalance the system, but the loss of benefits to those senior citizens will be huge. So too will the cutbacks for hospitals treating the elderly if the bill passes.