Coburn plans to read the bill …

posted at 9:50 am on November 7, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Oklahoma’s Tom Coburn is an old-school conservative, and an old-school Senator.  How traditional can Dr. Coburn get?  Politico reports that Coburn wants to read Harry Reid’s ObamaCare bill before he casts a vote on it — and to make sure he has the time to do it, Coburn plans to force the bill to be read in its entirety on the Senate floor:

Sen. Tom Coburn, the Oklahoma Republican who developed a close friendship with President Obama when they served together in the Senate, is threatening to have the entire health care bill read on the Senate floor.

Senior Senate Democratic aides had heard Coburn was considering having potentially thousands of pages read aloud in effort to stall passage. “If he did this it would be even outrageous for a guy who’s become known as Dr. No around here,” one of them told POLITICO.

Coburn’s office confirmed that he is indeed thinking about having the bill read.

This could create even more problems for Harry Reid in getting the bill out the door.  Unlike in the House, Reid hasn’t been able to do a jam-down on his version of ObamaCare.  While a few Democrats still hold out hope for action on the bill by Christmas, some are now setting a target of the State of the Union address at the end of January as more realistic.

If Coburn and other Republicans force floor readings of the bill, that may drift into March or April.  If Coburn insists on a floor reading every time the bill gets amended, it may be summertime before they can get around to it.  The Senate has other business to conduct, which would interrupt floor readings that would take at least several straight days of floor time to complete for a bill that will run into the thousands of pages.  And all it takes is one Senator to withhold the unanimous consent necessary to dispense with floor readings.

In effect, it would allow Coburn to have the bill filibuster itself.

Publicity stunt?  Sure.  But Coburn’s action would give people plenty of time to find the ridiculous aspects of a bill that would quasi-nationalize 1/6th of the American economy — its reach, its taxes, its mandates, and its intrusion onto the personal choices and freedoms of Americans.  The more people have seen these bills, the less they have liked them.  That’s why Pelosi’s trying to jam down her bill this weekend, and why Reid can’t afford to let anyone read his bill, let alone the Senate clerk doing it aloud.


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Like someone said, it’s a shame when a representative threatens to do his job (read legislation before voting on it) and it becomes news. What’s even sorrier is that none of his colleagues are “threatening” to do the same. So I think anyone who has not read it should abstain from voting because they aren’t qualified to make an intelligent decision.

scalleywag on November 7, 2009 at 10:56 AM

I still think we should start the No Unanimous Consent party: NUC every bill that comes out of committee.

Make it HARD to pass legislation.

karl9000 on November 7, 2009 at 10:56 AM

Perhaps the esteemed Senator Vitter can lend this great patriot from Oklahoma some diapers. That’s what heroes do, I guess.

simplesimon on November 7, 2009 at 10:38 AM

Perhaps you could lend us the light of your intellect to understand why you think this bill and its coercive components are to our benefit, or why having a bill of such momentous importance and implications to Americans read in the halls of the senate is a bad idea (in the absence of any kind of actual debate or bipartisan engagement)?

I appreciate the appeal of the bladder and bowel jokes but isn’t this bill something you want to defend, i.e., isn’t a spirited and persuasive defense of it sort of an obligation?

rrpjr on November 7, 2009 at 10:57 AM

YES! Please do it, Sen. Coburn! The less Congress has time to do, the better off the entire country is. Especially with this socialist monstrosity.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 10:59 AM

Turn to CSPAN! This is awesome.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Dingell is a senile old moron.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:02 AM

I say unanimous consent should be withheld on EVERY bill until at least the final version of the bill has been available online for 72 hours and an addition 24 hours for every 200 pages of bill.

michaelo on November 7, 2009 at 10:43 AM

Excellent.

However, I’d like to see it stretched a little. I think 5 days plus an additional day for every 100 pages.

Some of us have to work long hours, feed the kids, fix the truck, clean the house, get supplies, etc…

I think the standard should be set by the citizens who are paying for the work to be done. Afterall, we are the Board of Directors.

I don’t give a damn what our employees think, this doesn’t concern them.

Saltysam on November 7, 2009 at 11:03 AM

C-SPAN rulz. Dingell is a morass.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:05 AM

GOP asks for 1-hour suspension; this is hilarious. What a bunch of kindergartners. I OBJECT!

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

I OBJECT!!!!!!

I think Dingell is going to have a stroke…

tatersalad on November 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

HELL, yeah. Read it.

iurockhead on November 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

That should be our new cry to arms, “MR. SPEAKER, I OBJECT!”

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:09 AM

This isn’t a publicity stunt. it can’t be if only CSPAN junkies will hear it.

The more this drags out, the more embarrassed the Dems become, and the weaker the president gets. This isn’t Waterloo as much as the French Army’s slow retreat from Moscow: A long, humiliating, excruciating defeat.

EMD on November 7, 2009 at 9:56 AM

Is that the 1812 Overture I hear?

thebrokenrattle on November 7, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Mr. Dingell, YOU LIE!

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:10 AM

If the GOP can’t stop this thing might as well go down pissing the democrats off

gophergirl on November 7, 2009 at 11:13 AM

Dingell-berry will keel over eventually if the GOP presses on.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:14 AM

Turn to CSPAN! This is awesome.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Unbelievable. Dingell just responded to a request to extend debate one hour to allow the people lined up to speak by saying “no advantage can be had by making all of this fuss.”

Right, you corrupt scum — no advantage to you!

rrpjr on November 7, 2009 at 11:14 AM

If Coburn and other Republicans force floor readings of the bill, that may drift into March or April. If Coburn insists on a floor reading every time the bill gets amended, it may be summertime before they can get around to it.

In effect, it would allow Coburn to have the bill filibuster itself.

Note to Allhpundit: We now have definitive proof of the existence of God, and He has a magnificent sense of humor.

Bruno Strozek on November 7, 2009 at 11:15 AM

He cannot truly believe the bullsh*t coming out of his mouth.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:17 AM

He cannot truly believe the bullsh*t coming out of his mouth.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Rep. Dingell, that is.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:18 AM

Great pictures of the criminal scumbag, Alcee Hastings, sitting in front of the Dem microphone. Dems really love those criminals.

progressoverpeace on November 7, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Saltysam on November 7, 2009 at 11:03 AM

I’d guess 100 pages is about an hour for most people who’d read these things (depending on reading speed). So your suggestion is about right. To read a 2000 page bill you’d have to be pretty dedicated though.

gh on November 7, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Heh, that should take at least two presidential terms.

Schadenfreude on November 7, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Bong hits at Bawny’s house after the vote!

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:28 AM

Coburn’s office confirmed that he is indeed thinking about having the bill read.

Since Nancy and Harry, “the most transparent Congress, ever” are even blocking it from being available on the internet, or from being read by those who vote on it, long enough to know exactly what’s in it, and since WE will PAY for it, and since the Congress will be EXEMPT from it, it’s only fair that WE know every dot and comma in IT!!!

The Senate is not the House and poor Nancy’s sub-lizzard brain doesn’t get that. Poor Harry – the delay is getting closer and closer to Nevada’s senatorial run, heh.

Schadenfreude on November 7, 2009 at 11:31 AM

Please Tom force them to do this. Kill the bill.

Brat4life on November 7, 2009 at 11:33 AM

Oh, thanks for telling me to turn on Cspan, this is hilarious. Absolutely hilarious.
Go Republicans!

ORconservative on November 7, 2009 at 11:33 AM

I see this as stimulus bill. They will have to hire more clerks to participate in relays to read the bill.

burt on November 7, 2009 at 11:34 AM

some are now setting a target of the State of the Union address at the end of January as more realistic.

Hmmm… right in time to kick off the campaigns for the mid-term elections.

That probably won’t go as well as Reid and Pelosi hope.

jana on November 7, 2009 at 11:34 AM

Watching those democrat drones frog-march down to the microphone to read their specious emotional factoids as they slaver in anticipation of their socialized power grab is both sickening and soul-sapping to anybody who prizes liberty. There is madness and sickness in the air today.

rrpjr on November 7, 2009 at 11:36 AM

Fox News reports that Obama just left the White House and is en route to Capitol Hill to serve a lot of pork and twist arms, er, persuade Blue Dogs to vote for the socialization of America via health care. I wish I were a fly on the wall observing these meetings. Obama is going to be talking a lot today.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:37 AM

Fox News reports that Obama just left the White House and is en route to Capitol Hill to serve a lot of pork
Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:37 AM

I hope Keith Ellison isn’t there! Though he’s probably busy delivering flowers to Nidal Hasan.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:41 AM

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Keith is busy with his part in the killing the economy.

ORconservative on November 7, 2009 at 11:47 AM

Fox News reports that Obama just left the White House and is en route to Capitol Hill to serve a lot of pork…
Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:37 AM

It’ll be pulled/shredded pork.

Schadenfreude on November 7, 2009 at 11:48 AM

Obama in the hizzy. This ought to be interesting. My district is represented by a Blue Dog. If he caves, he will be out of a job next year, for certain.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:48 AM

Rep. Slaughter (how appropriate a name to be leading the charge to pass it on the floor) just dug up Kennedy to use as a prop again.

KSgop on November 7, 2009 at 11:49 AM

If he’s going to read it on the floor, I expect they’ll not be going home for Thanksgiving holiday!

hopefloats on November 7, 2009 at 11:53 AM

There are enough turkeys full of stuffing in the Senate. They’ll be fine working through Thanksgiving.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:55 AM

Mike Pence, calling out the Blue Dogs. You go, Mike. I like Mike. Maybe we’ll see his name during the next round of GOP presidential primaries.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:56 AM

Look, there are about seven reporters there at the GOP press conference. This is how in the tank the lamestream Obama media is. Unbelievable.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:57 AM

A 2000 page law. Heck, even the Bible is only about 1300 pages long…..including the New Testament.

SouthernRoots on November 7, 2009 at 12:05 PM

I agree the Repub House members should withhold unanimous consent and demand the House Bill be read together with every amendment to it. There’s no fire, there’s no need to rush on this monstrous bill. Sunlight is the best disinfectant to this vampirish democrap offering.

eaglewingz08 on November 7, 2009 at 12:15 PM

Great timing by Coburn.

His threat to stall the bill in the Senate will leave weak House Dems wondering why they have to walk the plank on Pelosicare and vote for it today. After all, if the bill dies in the Senate, their vote will be for nothing.

Great job.

Revenant on November 7, 2009 at 12:31 PM

FWIW, killing someone isn’t a casual act; “you’ve” taken something that can’t be replaced. For some, the after effects are worse than the loss they might have experienced if they had let the criminal go on.

Now that’s what I call putting things into perspective!

Woody

woodcdi on November 7, 2009 at 12:43 PM

Ignore my last post! My clipboard let me down!

A 2000 page law. Heck, even the Bible is only about 1300 pages long…..including the New Testament.

SouthernRoots on November 7, 2009 at 12:05 PM

Now that’s what I call putting things into perspective!

Woody

woodcdi on November 7, 2009 at 12:46 PM

Contact Senator Coburn, and give him your support.
http://coburn.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=ContactSenatorCoburn.Home

rightallthetime on November 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM

I am proud to say that Dr. Coburn is my senator. :)

He, along with Rush, Sarah, Levin, Bachmann, and all the rest are true American heroes and patriots. Let the record show that WHEN (not if) ObamaCare goes down to defeat, they helped hold the line, and it will signal the beginning of the end of elected radical liberalism in the US for the next two to three generations.

What happens after this, is up to the grass roots Conservatives. If they can occupy positions of power and govern true to their beliefs, all citizens will benefit (for some, it will be grundgingly) from the leadership.

itzWicks on November 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM

I gave my contact info, and just left Oklahoma as my state even though I’m not there…. and just lent him my .02 even though I am not a constituent of his. …. shit, maybe I should be.

rightallthetime on November 7, 2009 at 12:49 PM

Keep calling – according to Michelle on her site vote postpone until at least 10:30 EST tonight.

Keep calling!

gophergirl on November 7, 2009 at 12:49 PM

I’m so depressed! I hope Coburn finds a way to stop this freight train!!!!

petunia on November 7, 2009 at 12:59 PM

Very, very sweet.

29Victor on November 7, 2009 at 1:03 PM

What can we do to encourage Coburn to do this?

doctormom on November 7, 2009 at 10:06 AM
email him encouragement. I just did.
http://coburn.senate.gov/public/index.cfm

rrpjr on November 7, 2009 at 10:23 AM

Thank you for the link.
I just e-mailed him.

justltl on November 7, 2009 at 1:05 PM

This is all truly hideous.

The Democrats do not care a whit about “reforming” health care. This is simply a naked power grab to enable Democrats to remain in power and control every aspect of our lives from cradle to grave.

God help us.

justltl on November 7, 2009 at 1:13 PM

I am proud to say that Dr. Coburn is my senator. :)
itzWicks on November 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM

As a fellow Oklahoman, I agree. I only wish we had more like him in Washington

mctowler on November 7, 2009 at 1:28 PM

Somehow I think all the attacks “how dare he demand the bill be read before voting” are simply not going to be very effective.

Sackett on November 7, 2009 at 1:29 PM

Yes, please, Senator Coburn. As long as you can, no matter what they say about you. DO IT.

Animator Girl on November 7, 2009 at 1:29 PM

Perhaps the esteemed Senator Vitter can lend this great patriot from Oklahoma some diapers. That’s what heroes do, I guess.

simplesimon on November 7, 2009 at 10:38 AM

Do you kiss your mom with that mouth? Oh wait. Not even SHE would kiss you.

Go for it, Senator Coburn. I’ll even donate some sucrets! :D

capejasmine on November 7, 2009 at 1:37 PM

In the madness of all that is Obamalosicare…Senator Coburn’s idea is something that actually makes sense. Think of it as a Republican effort to offer transparency to all Americans…including those who are hearing impaired!

redwhiteblue on November 7, 2009 at 2:08 PM

simplesimon on November 7, 2009 at 10:38 AM

Did it ever occur to you why, if this bill is such a wonderous thing that will bestow bliss and harmony upon the electorate, it requires the threat of 5 YEARS of imprisonment to coerce said electotate comply with it?

Apparently, Pelosi after some reflection, thought that 1 year of imprisonment was inadequate, perhaps she figured most Americans would rather do the year behind bars than be part of her reform scheme.

If that alone doesn’t clue you in to the supposed benevolence of the progressive’s reform effort, what will?

Archimedes on November 7, 2009 at 2:27 PM

And how do the media and the Dems deceive the public with claims of AMA and AARP endorsement? This way: http://healthcare.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MDY1M2M1ZGJmNmUzZTgzMTQ0MTY5YjY0MzNlYzk1NDU=

onlineanalyst on November 7, 2009 at 2:44 PM

I still think we should start the No Unanimous Consent party: NUC every bill that comes out of committee.

Make it HARD to pass legislation.

karl9000 on November 7, 2009 at 10:56 AM

I agree Karl! I totally agree. If a bill can’t be passed after reading it, or if you can’t stand to read it, maybe it shouldn’t be passed.

The less work the legislature does right now, the better.

I wish I could vote for Coburn right about now. Tom, if you do it, you will have shown the rest of the GOP what it’s like to have balls.

Chaz706 on November 7, 2009 at 2:56 PM

Perhaps the esteemed Senator Vitter can lend this great patriot from Oklahoma some diapers. That’s what heroes do, I guess.

simplesimon on November 7, 2009 at 10:38 AM

What about Transparancy, following parliamentary procedure, or just plain politeness to the people (we aren’t able to read the bill before it’s voted on thanks to Pelosi and Reid you jerks.) do you hate simplesimon?

Chaz706 on November 7, 2009 at 2:57 PM

Paging John Cornyn. Senator John Cornyn.
Paging Kay BAILOUT Hutchinson. Former Senator and never a governor Kay BAILOUT Hutchinson. For your information this is what a SENATOR does to make a point, deliver a message, be a conservative, and STAND IN THE GAP.
 
Ladies and Gentlemen: Now presenting in the center ring of our National Three Ring Circus, The one, The only, last remaining SENATOR OF THESE UNITED STATES.
 
Senator Coburn,
You make me proud to have been born in Oklahoma. Thank you for representing me from the other side of the river.

Blacksmith8 on November 7, 2009 at 3:07 PM

I am proud to say that Dr. Coburn is my senator. :)

He, along with Rush, Sarah, Levin, Bachmann, and all the rest are true American heroes and patriots.
itzWicks on November 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Me too, but you left one out closer to home: Jim Inhofe — our other Senator, who even more than Coburn has voted no on all these monstrous bills including TARP. Inhofe is planning to go to Copenhagen to question the ridiculous global governance treaty on Global Warming. He is another conservative hero in my opinion.

Christian Conservative on November 7, 2009 at 3:28 PM

I am proud to say that Dr. Coburn is my senator. :)

He, along with Rush, Sarah, Levin, Bachmann, and all the rest are true American heroes and patriots.
itzWicks on November 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Me too, but you left one out closer to home: Jim Inhofe — our other Senator, who even more than Coburn has voted no on all these monstrous bills including TARP. Inhofe is planning to go to Copenhagen to question the ridiculous global governance treaty on Global Warming. He is another conservative hero in my opinion.

Christian Conservative on November 7, 2009 at 3:28 PM

I wish I was in Oklahoma right about now.

Chaz706 on November 7, 2009 at 3:31 PM

C-SPAN rulz. Dingell is a morass.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:05 AM
_______________________________________________________
C-SPAN rulz. Dingell is a morass.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:05 AM

Dopenstrange on November 7, 2009 at 4:17 PM

Coburn has a great idea. If they have to read the “damm”thing it will never come close to passing. Besides, only the dems would try to push something through that a majority of the voters violently appose. It is like they have forgotten who put them in DC and who can just as well remove them.

duff65 on November 7, 2009 at 5:29 PM

Read The Bill!!!

5u93rm4n on November 7, 2009 at 7:37 PM

I haven’t been able to use my computer all day and just now saw this. Is there an update on this? I checked CSPAN, but nothing. Sounds like I missed all the fun stuff. I’m from Oklahoma and am very proud of our two senators – they always represent our point of view very well.

silvernana on November 7, 2009 at 7:47 PM

I wish I was in Oklahoma right about now.

Chaz706 on November 7, 2009 at 3:31 PM

You know it.
After 10 years of living in Hyde Park, Chi., I enjoy going to the polls to vote for my Senator.
Coburn is up in ’10 btw so if you could spare something you might send it along.

billy on November 7, 2009 at 8:37 PM

“If he did this it would be even outrageous for a guy who’s become known as Dr. No around here,”

Why would this be outrageous? What am I missing, it should be read at least three times, and reread everytime an admendment is approved.

whbates on November 7, 2009 at 8:37 PM

Filibustawsome!

I wish I was a senator just so I could read it.

Sapwolf on November 7, 2009 at 8:50 PM

Perhaps the esteemed Senator Vitter can lend this great patriot from Oklahoma some diapers. That’s what heroes do, I guess.

simplesimon on November 7, 2009 at 10:38 AM

No, your party should eat this crap sandwich, and they can sit down and digest every nasty bite. Own this POS bill and kiss your asses goodbye in 2010. That’s heroic.

chunderroad on November 7, 2009 at 9:15 PM

No, your party should eat this crap sandwich, and they can sit down and digest every nasty bite. Own this POS bill and kiss your asses goodbye in 2010. That’s heroic.

chunderroad on November 7, 2009 at 9:15 PM

simplesimon is a douchbag, a Leftist Troll and Agent Provocateur. His purpose, is to rile up the good decent folks like us. He isn’t aware that the people he supports will eliminate him and his ilk if they are ever allowed to consolidate their power. They aren’t called useful idiots for nothing.

mrpeabody on November 7, 2009 at 9:57 PM

I wish I was in Oklahoma right about now.

Chaz706 on November 7, 2009 at 3:31 PM
You know it.
After 10 years of living in Hyde Park, Chi., I enjoy going to the polls to vote for my Senator.
Coburn is up in ‘10 btw so if you could spare something you might send it along.

billy on November 7, 2009 at 8:37 PM

Grass is Always Greener Department: Living in OK (one of the reddest of the red states) is great, but for the most part it means that we are always preaching to the choir. When you write, call or e-mail your public servants, they have usually taken the correct position anyway. Yet junk like Porkulus and Pelosicare still passes. Sometimes I think you swing-state conservatives have more say in the process as individuals and potentially make more of a difference.

Christian Conservative on November 8, 2009 at 12:28 AM

If I’m willing to drive from East Texas to Little Rock to walk neighborhoods for Blanche’s Republican opponent, the least I can do is work some phones for Senator Coburn.

applebutter on November 8, 2009 at 1:47 AM

This pre-supposes that we can find a Senator who can read.

percysunshine on November 8, 2009 at 3:33 PM

Publicity stunt? Sure.

I disagree, Ed. You, and everyone else only considers it a publicity stunt because we’ve acquiesced to the modern abomination that is “legislation”. No semi-intelligent human would subject himself to such a piece of crap without decades, or even centuries, of nonsense pushing us down the slippery slope. If it can’t even be read, how do you know what’s in it? How does anyone? They don’t.

Personally, I think this should be SOP for every piece of legislation Congress proposes, Democrat sponsored, Republican sponsored, or otherwise.

peski on November 8, 2009 at 10:37 PM

I think after he is done reading the bill he should pull out the ol’ phone book and read aloud the names of the people this bill will affect.

Bladerunner1701 on November 8, 2009 at 11:56 PM

GOD bless Coburn.

Publicity stunt?

Hardly. How about, “responsible lawmaker”? Ask yourself, how many people in this country have 2,000 pages of ANYTHING, much less one piece of legislation which turns this former Republic into a dictatorship. (By the way, could you read both “Gone With The Wind” and “War and Peace” in three days?) Coburn should praised and cheered, but most of all, THANKED. I pray he does read it aloud, every damnable word. And if that takes the Senate to the 2010 elections, so much the better.

oldleprechaun on November 9, 2009 at 1:36 PM

Obama in the hizzy. This ought to be interesting. My district is represented by a Blue Dog. If he caves, he will be out of a job next year, for certain.

Philly on November 7, 2009 at 11:48 AM

And we might all be out of a job in the years to follow.

RustBelt on November 9, 2009 at 2:39 PM

This is all truly hideous.

The Democrats do not care a whit about “reforming” health care. This is simply a naked power grab to enable Democrats to remain in power and control every aspect of our lives from cradle to grave.

God help us.

justltl on November 7, 2009 at 1:13 PM

HE did. HE gave us the soap box, the ballot box, and the cartridge box. And, it’s an often ignored fact that the soap box and the ballot box are made out of empty cartridge boxes.

Keep a ready supply.

Woody

woodcdi on November 15, 2009 at 9:52 PM

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