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Friday, March 12, 2010

Daily Democratic Wire 3-12-2010

George Wenschhof

President Obama donates the 1.4 million received with the Nobel Prize to Charities -
wow! I was one who did not realize there was a monetary award that came with receiving the Nobel Peace prize.

The president donated to ten charities with the Clinton-Bush Haiti relief fund receiving $200,000 and Fisher House receiving $250,000. Fisher House provides housing to families of military patients receiving care from VA hospitals, has more


Health Care Reform Update:

House Democrats meet to discuss final push for Health Care Reform -
expect the vote to come as early as next week in the House. All indications are the vote will be close, but I would not bet against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calf.) getting the number of votes needed to pass the Senate bill. has more here.

Whipping the votes in the House is coming along -
in Maryland, 6 of the 7 Democratic Representatives will vote for the Senate Health Care bill. Only first term Frank Kratovil from the first district will vote no and that may not be enough to help him be reelected from one of only two red districts in Maryland. Representative Roscoe Bartlett (R) from Maryland's 6th district is also expected to vote no.

As to Representative Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) and his objection to abortion language in the bill -
his ten minutes of claim to fame is coming to an end. He began his objections with saying he had 20+ House Democrats who would vote against the Senate bill, then it was 12 and now it seems it may be around 5 including himself.

A small monkey wrench was thrown into the mix yesterday -
when senate Parliamentarian Alan Frumin ruled President Obama must sign into law the Senate bill when passed by the House prior to amendments being passed by the House and sent to the Senate where reconciliation and a simple majority would be used for final passage. Seems some House Democrats are wary of Senate Democrats voting as they promise.

Yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) sent a letter to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) informing him of his intention to use the "budget reconciliation" process to amend the Health Care Reform bill.
In the letter, Reid also spelled out the many Republican amendments which had been included in the bill.

Last night, Reid's wife and daughter were involved in a serious car wreck which has left his wife in the hospital with a broken back and neck. Let's all hope for her speedy recovery.

President Obama has decided to postpone his planned trip to Asia -
he was coming under fire from fellow Democrats for pushing for a vote next week and then leaving on Friday to visit Asia and Australia. The president did the right thing in postponing the trip. he needs to be here to lead the final push for health care reform. The Caucus Blog has more here.


Immigration Reform talks begin -
yesterday, Senators Charles Shumer (D-NY) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) met with President Obama to discuss immigration reform. A much needed discussion and a much needed reform for the country. The president expressed his desire, once again, for Republican support. Graham threatened that if reconciliation is used to pass health care reform, then there will be no Republican support.

More of the same from the obstructionist Republicans and the "Party of No". The NY Times has more


Cuomo appoints independent counsel to oversee state investigation of NY Governor David Paterson -
Attorney General is expected to announce he is running for Governor so this is a smart move. Retired Court of Appeals Chief Justice Judith Kaye will head the investigation of any abuse of power by Governor Paterson. has more here.


Obama expected to nominate Janet Yellen as Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve -
subject to Senate confirmation, she would replace Donal Kohn who resigned last week after serving 40 years. Yellen is currently President of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. There are still two other vacancies on the seven member board. has more here.


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