Clyburn: Use Procedural Tools to Move Health Care Reform

Posted January 27, 2010 at 6:17pm

Bipartisanship is gone and Democrats should use the procedural device known as reconciliation to push health care reform legislation through the Senate on a simple majority, House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) said Tuesday.“What we have to do now is say to the American people that we tried hard to get a bill that the supermajority of the Senate would accept. Sixty votes. Now we have to go with what the American people understand: People understand a simple majority. Fifty plus one,— Clyburn said on MSNBC’s “The Ed Show.—Clyburn called on Democrats to get behind a bill “the simple majority will vote for and let’s go for it.—Already-shaky negotiations on health care came to a halt last week after Sen.-elect Scott Brown (R) pulled off a major upset in the Massachusetts Senate race to replace the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.). The win left the Senate one vote shy of enough votes to fend off a promised filibuster on health care legislation by Republicans.House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), also appearing on MSNBC, said there was “no movement— in Tuesday’s health care talks. He said Democrats are looking to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address Wednesday night for guidance on the matter.“There’s a lot of fight in the Democratic ranks to get something done,— Hoyer said. “We’ll hopefully get some Republicans to recognize— the importance of passing health care reform into law.Both Clyburn and Hoyer dismissed the idea that Republicans were shut out of negotiations on the issue.“It’s unfortunate that we haven’t worked together, but it hasn’t been because we haven’t been willing to do so,— Hoyer said. “They were invited to the table and refused to come to the table. … They’ve chosen not to play.—