Plumline’s Greg Sargent has posted the results of a highly confidential House Democratic Party Whip Count which shows 47 Democrats at No on a public option, with another 8 leaning No for a total of 56. A dozen Democratic House members are still undecided. The hard No votes, alone, are enough to kill the bill. The leaked document was produced by the U.S. House Majority Whip’s office.
In a major violation of whipping protocol, the document was shared with Progressive House members who refuse to vote for health reform unless it contains a robust public option. Plumline reports that the Progressive Members of Congress (hard core left-wingers) blamed everyone: the White House and the Democratic leadership for not putting enough pressure on members to vote for the public option, from Plumline:
“House progressives argue that the document should light a fire under Dem leaders. One House progressive tells me he’s convinced that most of the undecideds, and a number of the No votes, can be won over with the right mix of pressure and incentives — which only the House leadership and the White House can provide.”
“Only leadership and the White House can get this done,” this progressive says.
Plumline quotes the spokesperson for James Clyburn, the House Majority Whip: “Kristie Greco would only say: ‘We currently do not have the votes for a robust public option.'”
For a look at how the Dems do not have enough votes in the Senate, click here.
Plumline begins the start of the first push back from Progressives since Senator Durbin (D-IL) blamed liberals for forcing their hand and including the public option — and likely is the start of the new inside the beltway drama headlined by Democrats and now in its second day: Who-gets-blamed-for-the-failure-of-the-public-option?
H/T Joe Guarino