Bart Stupak tells Fox News that, as a “guesstimate,” he thinks the Democrats are at least 16 votes short of passing the health-care bill: “I’d be surprised if they have 200 votes.”
One trouble for Pelosi seems to be that, this time around, she can’t accommodate Stupak and the pro-life Democrats, because she can’t believably assure them that the Senate will accept and adopt an abortion-funding ban. If Stupak is right, this is a curious turn: The fact that there is not a single serious pro-life Democrat in the Senate means that the House won’t trust the Senate on the issue, which means that the health-care bill could fail. If Harry Reid and Bob Casey had held their supposedly pro-life line on abortion, the Democrats would be much further along in health-care reform.
Is Stupak right about the aye votes in his whip count? My count runs higher , but, then, he does this for a living.
Of course, Nancy Pelosi does it for a living, too. And it’s hard to believe that she would put her party through these additional weeks of agonykeeping the issue on the front page day after day, ginning up more and more angry oppositionif she didn’t think she could eventually get the votes.