Why Dems Scheduled Xmas Eve Health Care Vote

Momentum, urgency, fear of embarrassment, etc.
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 21, 2009 11:16 AM CST
President Barack Obama stands with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Lamar Alexander has called the Democrats' push to quickly pass health care reform "a political kamikaze mission toward a historic mistake," but Senate Dems have reasons other than self-immolation for scheduling a 7pm vote on Christmas Eve. Politico looks at five:

  • To maintain momentum: If the latest compromise takes a vacation, it could fall apart.

  • And create urgency: Lawmakers make the tough choices when they're stuck between a rock and a hard deadline.
  • To save face: Eight months of "maneuvering" is already "embarrassing" for the White House. Allow the bill to fester into 2010, and Dems can't...
  • Focus on jobs: Obama would really prefer to speak to the economy during his first State of the Union, not the interminable health care debate.
  • Because this isn't the end of the line, anyway: The House and Senate bills will need to be reconciled.

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