On the day of the vote I want to see you in the front row. Keep your eye on the doorkeeper. If I don’t need your vote, Fishbait Miller will give you the sign and you’ll be free to vote your district.”…
…when Leo took his seat in the front row, he looked around and saw thirteen other guys that Sam had in his pocket in case he needed them. It wasn’t just Leo. The entire front row was sitting there and waiting for the nod from Fishbait Miller.
Tip O’Neill Man of the House 1988
Looking at the “Gang of Eight” bill I’m reminded of the last days of Obamacare.
Democrats had a vast majority in the house, more than enough votes to get Obamacare through but as citizens became angrier and angrier at what was coming members of congress understood that not only was the GOP going to give them absolutely no cover but voters were so upset at this bill that a Republican would win a senate election in Massachusetts for the first time since the Nixon years.
Democrats has stalled and stalled but when it became clear that the media was not going to convince any more members of the public and Scott Brown’s election meant nothing else was going to pass the senate she needed a fig leaf to give her some of her members cover.
Thus came the Stupak Amendment and the fig leaf he provided while proving disastrous to him and his followers was a Godsend to others as he said later:
“I had a number of members who thanked us after because they could vote no.”
But Stupak fig leaf would quickly wither. His seat and 62 others for democrats would not survive election day and even more shocking to the left the New GOP majority would remain even after the re-election of President Obama and the popularity of his bill remains so poor that the re-election machine of the president is still running ads to sell it.
Which brings us to Corker-Hoeven.
It’s axiomatic that if this was a good bill, a bill that would solve problems, a bill that would both secure the border AND take care of the problem of millions of illegal aliens, a bill that would make Hispanics happy with pols who passed it not only would the GOP be falling over itself to pass this bill with the democrats but there would be absolutely no chance that any Democrat running in the 21 states they are defending in 2014 would fall away.
The reality is the bill is over 1000 pages of trouble and for all the 70 vote talk each day the bill remains un-passed voters hate it more and the Danger becomes that even with the 4 GOP members of the gang of 8 + Ayotte voting for it, Harry Reid will still need every single Democrat to pass this bill, which means, that every Democrat becomes the 60th vote.
This is why Corker-Hoeven is so important, not for the GOP but for Harry Reid. Reid needs every GOP vote possible to allow him to give the senators in those 21 states who haven’t already announced retirement the ability to give a no vote that they can tout in their districts.
“The bill can’t pass as it’s currently written,” one GOP aide told Breitbart News. “They can’t get 60 votes as it’s currently written. The bill has to be amended with not only stronger border security measures but should also include verification that progress is being made on the border before the legalization process begins.”
“If Corker-Hoeven doesn’t pass, then the most likely scenario is that the bill can’t pass,” the source claimed.
Harry Reid has put himself in a box, with all the 70 vote talk if this bill fails it becomes his failure so even if he has to whip every democrat for their vote to get this bill passed he will, but what he really wants is the ability to give 4 to 5 democrats the ability to vote “no” and help preserve them for 2014.
If Corker Hoven passes and brings some republicans with it and the bill still only manages 60 or 62 votes nobody will remember how many democrats voted No, they will only talk about the number of republicans who voted yes, and like the Stupak Amendment if the bill actually becomes law the provision of that Amendment will be finessed until they become meaningless.
We’ve seen this picture before, but what is amazing to me this time is not that some kind of face saving cover is being provided for Harry Reid, what is amazing is that it’s the GOP is the party that is providing it.
Update: Pay no attention to the people in Dirksen 201