Senate Democrats emerged from a special caucus meeting Monday night determined to pass a health-care bill by Christmas — but without the Medicare buy-in plan that liberals had sought as an alternative to a government insurance option.
The Medicare buy-in was never warmly embraced by moderate Democrats, but independent Sen. Joseph Lieberman(Conn), whose vote is needed to break a GOP filibuster, appears to have dealt the proposal a mortal blow when he informed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.) on Sunday that he wouldn’t support the buy-in plan in any form.
Friends, Beltwayans, countrymen: I come to bury health care, not to praise it. The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones. So let it be with health care. Ambition for reform should have been made of sterner stuff, and liberals have lost their reason. Behold, for I am your new leader!
Oh, and I have a few demands. This list is not inclusive and is subject to additions and amendments, depending on how I feel in that particular moment:
1. You shall hereinafter refer to me as “Josephus Imperator”. Alternatively, if I am in the mood, you may address me in the familiar as “Rex Senatorium”. Only my family and close friends are permitted to call me “Shivmeister”.
2. My birthday, February 24th, shall henceforth be observed as a national holiday. However, I have so decreed that only insurance company and pharmaceutical industry employees shall be allowed to take the day off in celebration of my nativity.
3. Caricaturists depicting me as the cartoon character “Droopy Dawg” or the father in the 1980s television sitcom “ALF” shall be summarily executed.
4. Web revolutionaries Jane Hamsher and Markos Moulitsas are hereby banished from this country to a faraway land where there is no Internet by which to foment rebellion against me or my wife, Hadassah Regina.
5. I will remain at liberty to attend the Senate Democratic Caucus meetings at my pleasure, despite my undocumented registration as a Republican.
6. I reserve the right to remain the key swing vote on every vitally important piece of legislation passing through either House of Congress.
7. I will not only retain my current chairmanship, but am now claiming the gavels for the Judiciary, Appropriations, and Finance committees.
8. We begin bombing Iran in 5 minutes.
Wherever you are, Senator Kennedy, I hope you’re not watching this desecration of your life’s work. It is absolutely shameful.