Quasi-Live Blogging The Health Care Vote: This Is The Day

* One of the Stupak block, Marcy Kaptur just became an ex-pro-lifer by supporting the health care bill. That’s a key pick-up for the pro-health care side.

* Ron Kind came out in favor of Obamacare, too, although most people thought he’d go that way.

* Supposedly Loretta Sanchez is going to make the vote today. Which way will she vote when she gets there? It’s impossible to say for sure, but the fact she’s going to show up makes it more likely she’ll be a yes.

* The key for the Dems, however, is an executive order that could used as cover by the Stupak block:

Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) said Sunday morning that he is close to striking a deal with the Obama administration on abortion provisions.

“We are close to getting something done,” Stupak said in an interview with MSNBC.

Stupak said he engaged in talks late into Saturday night.

The possible deal would focus on an executive order that would specify there would be no public funding for abortions in the healthcare bill.

“We’re close but we’re not there yet,” Stupak said.

Democratic leaders said Sunday they have the votes on healthcare reform, but Stupak said until there is a deal struck, they don’t have the 216 votes they need.

Stupak said “there were eight of us” in the negotiating room, all of them no votes.

An executive order from Obama isn’t going to override the bill that’s being passed in Congress. If it actually could, the pro-abortion crowd in Congress would be howling at the top of their lungs right now. There’s a reason that’s not happening. This is kabuki theater.

* How do we stand on the vote? At this point, it probably depends on the Stupak block. If they stand up for life, I think the Dems are going to have a tough time getting the votes. So, this bill may come down to whether there are even a handful of real pro-lifers in the Democratic Party anymore.

Update #1 (1:02 PM EST): For the people asking, it’s impossible to say for sure, but without peeling off some more of the Stupak block, I don’t think they have the votes.

Update #2 (1:13 PM EST): Supposedly, the vote is at 7 PM EST tonight. The key undecided votes right now?

Baird, Brian: D+0
Davis, Lincoln: R+14
Tanner, John: R+6
Foster, Bill: R+1
Kanjorski, Paul: D+4
Ortiz, Solomon: R+2
Pomeroy, Earl: R+10
Loretta Sanchez: D+5
Rick Boucher: R+11

Without the Stupak block, Pelosi would pretty much need to run the table on those votes to get to 216. That would be extraordinarily difficult to do.

Update #3 (1:18 PM EST): There are claims floating around that Stupak is selling out. If so, it’s over. I haven’t seen confirmation yet, though.

Update #4 (1:27 PM EST): From Twitter: @stevebruskCNN Urgent — Stupak CNN producer Lesa Jansen: “I’m still a no..There is no deal yet. Its a work in progress.”

Update #5 (1:32 PM EST): Solomon Ortiz is a yes.

Update #6 (1:32 PM EST): If this bill passes, expect a temporary bump in the polls for Obama and then for the numbers to to go down to where they are now and then lower.

Update #7 (1:43 PM EST): Incidentally, just to give you an idea of what’s at stake with this Stupak negotiation, supposedly Stupak was at the White House with 9 other Democrats. One of them, Marcy Kaptur caved. But still, if Stupak and 8 other Dems in his block say no, Pelosi is going to need to convince multiple Dems from R+10 districts to vote for this thing to pass it. That is going to be incredibly difficult.

Update #8 (1:55 PM EST): Bad news. It’s looking more and more like the Stupak block is about to sell out their principles for a meaningless figleaf. Over at the The Corner, they’ve got the text of the Executive Order Obama is about to release. Go over to read it. Here’s part of the commentary:

As of last night, this was the text. Not having a ton of Democratic sources, I can’t tell you if this is the final or not, assuming there is even such a thing.

…The reality of this or any other text, though is: It is meaningless legally. It has no binding effect. I don’t know a single lawyer with a working knowledge of the Constitution, Congress, and the Executive, who says otherwise.

…Ed Whelan – who, if we were the Obama administration, would be “Bench Memos” czar – adds: “Totally meaningless because it has no binding force. An utter sham.”

Update #9 (2:08 PM EST): Brian Baird is a Yes and Lincoln Davis is a No. At this point, I think it all comes down to the Stupak block.

Update #10 (2:13 PM EST): From the Washington Examiner:

Despite reports on MSNBC that pro-life Democrat Bart Stupak, D-Mich., will vote for the bill, he remains a “no” vote.

I just talked to Stupak in the basement of the Capitol as he walked passed a throng of protesters calling for members to vote against the bill.

…”We are waiting until we have an agreement with not just the White House but also the Speaker and others,” Stupak said. “There is no agreement. It’s still a work in progress. I think we have work to do.”

Update #11 (2:17 PM EST): Earl Pomeroy, who was undecided, comes out as a surprising “yes” vote.

Update #12 (2:23 PM EST): John Tanner is now a “no.”

Update #13 (2:35 PM EST): Bill Foster will vote yes. That brings us down to:Kanjorski, Paul: D+4, Rick Boucher: R+11, Alan Mollohan R+9 and the Stupak block: Jerry Costello, Joe Donnelly, Steve Driehaus, Dan Lipinski, Bart Stupak, Marion Berry, Kathy Dahlkemper, Alan Mollohan, & Nick Rahall.

Either they peel off members of the Stupak block or they’re done. Of course, they’re trying to do that as we speak and it may work.

Update #14 (2:50 PM EST): The Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and MSNBC reported that there was a deal reached with Stupak. However, since then, he has said he’s still “no” vote and they’re still negotiating.

Update #16 (3:33 PM EST): Stupak has a press conference, on CNN, at 4 PM EST.

Update #16 (3:37 PM EST): “FLASH: Senate Republicans found a provision in the new House health care bill that likely makes it ineligible for expedited ‘reconciliation’ procedures in the Senate. Dems refused to meet with GOP and Parliamentarian…. Developing….” — Drudge Report

Update #17 (3:42 PM EST): “Driehaus confirms: Eight or nine pro-lifers are having a press conference at 4, with Stupak.” — The Corner

This is for all the marbles. If the Stupak block cracks and decides to become advocates of aborting children with your tax dollars, they will pass health care and there will no longer be such a thing as a pro-life Democrat. If they hold tight, it looks extremely unlikely that Nancy can get the votes.

PS: Any executive order Obama signed off on would be utterly meaningless.

Update #18 (3:54 EST): Stupak member Driehaus: He likes the executive order. He’s voting for it. He will be at Stupak’s presser. That’s a deathblow. They’re going to have the votes if they break for it.

Update #19 (3:56 EST): Here’s a video featuring hardcore pro-abortion advocate, Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D – FL), admitting that this executive order is a scam:

Update #19 (4:07 EST): Stupak and company have become ex-pro-lifers principles to vote for this bill. Your tax dollars will now be used to kill children. Meanwhile, Bart Stupak is talking about his principles! It’s like Judas giving a press conference to explain why he took the 30 pieces of silver. It’s pathetic really. Stupak is standing up there pleading for the liberal phone calls to his house at 2 AM to stop.

Pro-life Democrats have now joined the Easter Bunny & Santa Claus as the most famous imaginary creatures.

Update #20 (4:24 EST): This press conference has just gotten even more pathetic. Bart Stupak actually just said: “We have assurances from the President and others that he will not rip this up tomorrow.” It actually reminds me of Neville Chamberlain waving around a piece of paper declaring peace in our time.

Update #21 (4:31 EST): The French just called. They said they were shocked at how easily Stupak surrendered.

Update #22 (4:35 EST): Just in case you still had any doubts about whether Obama’s executive order means anything, here’s Andrew McCarthy:

The Susan B. Anthony List observation that EOs can be rescinded at the president’s whim is of course true. This particuar EO is also a nullity – presidents cannot enact laws, the Supreme Court has said they cannot impound funds that Congress allocates, and (as a friend points out) the line-item veto has been held unconstitutional, so they can’t use executive orders to strike provisions in a bill. So this anti-abortion EO is blatant chicanery: if the pro-lifers purport to be satisfied by it, they are participating in a transparent fraud and selling out the pro-life cause.

Of course, if there were really anything to this, you’d have 40 pro-abortion House Democrats howling at the top of their lungs and threatening to vote “no.”

Update #23 (4:43 EST): Just in case there was any doubt, with the Stupak block on board, they’ve got the votes. They may even be able to release some people to vote no now.

Update #24 (5:34 EST): Ok, stepping away for a couple of hours. Unless something else breaks, the big drama until the vote just ended.

Update #25 (8:22 EST): Just watching the meaningless “debate” on CNN (sort of) and waiting for the Democrats to take over 1/6 of the US economy. Nothing has really changed. They’re still expected to pass. It’ll be interesting to see whom they allow to flip and vote no. Harry Mitchell maybe?

The next step will be fighting the reconciliation changes in the Senate and then we head into the vote. If we take enough seats back to flip the House, we’ll have some new moves to execute. That’s a heavy, but possible lift we’re going to have to get done.

Update #26 (8:36 EST) This is a really long hail Mary obviously, but I figured I’d put it out there just in case:

Democrats are worried about holding their members together on a GOP motion that could kill the healthcare bill.

Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) said House leaders are specifically concerned about a Republican motion to recommit that would contain only language on abortion that Stupak originally had wanted to include in the Senate bill.

The concern is based on the fear of GOP attack ads painting Democrats who vote against a motion to recommit that includes Stupak’s favored language on abortion as “flip-floppers” on the issue.

Sixty-eight Democrats voted for Stupak’s language in a November vote. They could be portrayed as flipping if they now voted against it.

“They are concerned about it,” Stupak said after his Sunday press conference.

If enough Democrats with Republicans backed the motion to recommit the bill to committee, it would effectively kill the healthcare bill.

Update #27 (9:25 EST) There are 3 votes coming up. The first is on the Senate bill. The second is a GOP motion to recommit. They’re putting the Stupak amendment back in. The third vote will be on reconciliation.

Update #28 (10:14 EST): Claim from Hannity Show: Stupak’s Airport kickback: He got $700,000 in funding for his district airports on Friday. I haven’t verified that yet, but that kind of corruption wouldn’t surprise me one bit.

Update #29 (10:23 EST): From now on, every insurance premium increase you have is the fault of the Democratic Party.

Update #30 (10:37 EST): Here comes the vote to destroy our health care system in the name of socialism. 9 minutes to go.

Update #31 (10:39 EST): For some reason, Obama supposedly isn’t going to sign the bill until Tuesday.

Update #32 (10:48 EST): The bill passed with 219 votes. 35 Democrats voted no. Socialism wins. America loses. As expected, the Stupak block’s sell-out proved to be decisive.

Update #32 (10:51 EST): Next up will be a motion to recommit. The Republicans are putting up Stupak’s language to show how non-serious Democrats are about their pro-life principles. Update #32 (11:07 EST): Someone yelled “baby killer” at Stupak? Granted, it’s rude, but it’s also AWESOME — because it’s so true and it deserved to be said.

Update #33 (11:25 EST): The White House convinced Bart Stupak to kill babies with an executive order & airport money, but mostly airport money.

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