House "Deem and Pass" strategy dead

I got home today and saw the news that the House Dems have decided that the “deem and pass” strategy wasn’t viable. They’ve now said they’re going to a straight up-or-down vote on the bill in question.

House Democrats on Saturday decided against using a controversial tactic to pass the Senate’s version of the health care bill without an actual vote.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-MD., said he believes Democrats have enough votes to pass the legislation.

The decision capped an ongoing discussion on whether to use a so-called “deem and pass” strategy that would allow House members to approve the Senate version of health care bill without an actual vote before taking up a second “fix-it” resolution, known as reconciliation.

The stage is now set for three big votes on Sunday: the first to bring the “fix-it” bill to the House floor. The second on the bill. Then the final vote would be on the Senate bill itself.

I’m still not sure how that sequence passes congressional muster – how does one vote to “fix” a law that’s not law yet? In any case, the bill still sucks and I’m pushing for members of congress to vote no. My own congressman, Rep. Frank Wolf, is already a solid no so it’s really going to be up to the other “swing” districts like Fairfax.

Kill the bill, guys. We can do way better.