Even if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are able to pull their legislative hat trick on Obamacare, as reported earlier this week by Congress Daily, it looks like support for such a measure among House Democrats is crumbling.
Note this statement today in a Politico piece on a "seething feud" between Pelosi and President Obama:
"Though Pelosi and other House Democrats have made it clear that they’re angry with the Senate, they’re also frustrated with the president, upset that he hasn’t come to terms with the problems of getting legislation through the upper chamber — or done enough to overcome them.
“'He wants a jobs bill, we get a jobs bill,' the official said. 'He wanted health care, we got health care. Then the answer is, ‘You just need to twist enough arms to pass the Senate bill.’ You can twist arms if you’ve got a handful of them to twist. You can’t twist over 100 arms. There needs to be some reality check there.'”
Taken literally, that statement suggests that more than 100 House Democrats are potentially ready to walk away from Obamacare if given the opportunity.
It appears from the Politico report that loyalty to the Obama agenda has been put on hold by many congressional Democrats, as the same unnamed official continued:
“'Both ends of the Capitol — the House and the Senate — are starting to wonder if they’re on their own,' the official continued. 'You have a lot of frustration there. And the White House’s reaction to all of that seems to be, ‘Run against Congress’ — which, as you can imagine, doesn’t go over very well with House members. The White House reaction seems to be, ‘Position ourselves against Congress.’”
The Galen Institute's Grace-Marie Turner surveys this wreckage and concludes the House is "a long, long way from having the votes to pass the Senate bill." That also mean, Turner said, that "clearly, the February 25 health care summit is a desperate effort by the White House to save the health overhaul effort."
She offers additional thoughts on the issue here.