House Budget Committee Reports Reconciliation Bill Out
The House Budget Committee, on a mostly party-line vote, just kicked off the procedural process, voting by a 21-16 count to forward the Reconciliation Act of 2010 to the House Rules Committee. The vote itself tells us nothing about what’s in the bill; now the Budget Committee will debate what instructions to offer on reconciliation to the Rules Committee. That bill is basically already written.
What we have learned from this vote is a bit more on where some key members of Congress are at on the bill. Here are the members of the Committee. 37 of the 39 members voted today on the bill. I don’t have the precise count, but I did hear two clear No votes from the Democratic side: Chet Edwards and Allen Boyd. Edwards was a firm no, but Boyd was only a lean no. I can see members voting for the Budget Committee resolution and against the bill, but I see no logic behind a member voting against the committee resolution and for the bill on the floor. Boyd looks like a no. That will be reflected in my next whip count.
Who were some of the yes votes in committee, particularly among Democrats who are on the fence? Marcy Kaptur, Tim Bishop, Bob Etheridge and Marion Berry all voted yes. Berry is seen as a firm no because of the Stupak abortion language. Kaptur, Bishop and Etheridge are on the fence. There’s a certain logic to voting the reconciliation bill out of the Budget Committee but voting no on the floor, I guess, so I wouldn’t rule out all four of these eventually voting no. But certainly Bishop and Kaptur are closer to yes than I thought, and maybe Berry will flip out of the Stupak bloc.
I’ll be monitoring the meeting for more revealing votes and comments.