Did Republicans win a “briar patch” battle with Nancy Pelosi?

posted at 2:50 pm on June 19, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Help me out here.  I’ve been reading this report from ABC News’ Z. Byron Wolf since last night, and I’m not sure exactly how Nancy Pelosi thinks she has found some new leverage against Senate Republicans.  In fact, as I read this, the Senate GOP has been handed a shadow filibuster by the House Speaker in what has to be one of the oddest and unprompted briar-patch strategies I’ve ever seen on Capitol Hill:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi struck a combative tone tonight, rejecting the Medicare “doc fix” passed hastily through the Senate Friday until Senate Republicans allow a vote on jobs measures that have passed through the House.

“I see no reason to pass this inadequate bill until we see jobs legislation coming out of the Senate,” said Pelosi in a statement.  “House Democrats are saying to Republicans in the Senate: Show us the jobs! (exclamation mark hers)”

Her statement, along with Senate Republicans’ unwillingness to pass any legislation that adds to the debt, means that Medicare doctors can expect a 21 percent pay cut when claims that have been held for two weeks start to be processed by Medicare’s government administrator on Monday. Senate Democrats could not muster 60 votes twice this week when they considered bills more to Pelosi’s liking. They passed the last-minute doc fix bill to avert the 21 percent pay cut to Medicare doctors on Friday afternoon, even as the pay cut was scheduled to take effect.

Pelosi struck a “combative tone” by refusing to act on a bill that, er, rescues Democrats from their heretofore unfulfilled payoff to the AMA in exchange for their support on ObamaCare.  Republicans didn’t need to pass a “doc fix” after the passage of the ObamaCare legislation whose financials were specifically predicated on keeping the Medicare reimbursement cuts in place.  The “doc fix” pulls Democratic chestnuts out of the fire, not Republican commitments.

And for what reason will she hold up the bill?  Pelosi wants Republicans to help pass a “jobs bill” that is almost entirely a bailout of state budgets, one that violates the Pay-Go rules that Pelosi herself demanded this year, and got.  As the midterms approach, even Democrats in both chambers have begun to balk at voting for big-spending bills, hoping that a recent show of frugality will blind voters to almost four years of Democratic profligacy that managed the near-impossible feat of making 2001-6 Republicans look like parsimonious misers in comparison.

In other words, Pelosi has handed the Senate Republicans the key to a filibuster not just in the Senate but also in the House, all to demand a massive expansion of the deficit on two separate fronts.  The GOP couldn’t have possibly asked for a better political position even if they had begged Pelosi not to throw them into that briar patch.  And if the “doctor fix” fails to get out of the House, it won’t be Republicans who get the blame, since Pelosi can call a vote on that any time she desires.

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage for as long as it takes Pelosi to realize that she’s blown it.


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Arrogant and incompetant.

kingsjester on June 19, 2010 at 2:53 PM

It’s almost like the wasn’t the smartest woman in the world!

Blacklake on June 19, 2010 at 2:55 PM

Karma is a biatch, ain’t it Nancy?!;)

capejasmine on June 19, 2010 at 2:56 PM

I think all of that Botox is finally starting to seep into the few functioning brain cells she has left. But, hey, who are we to interfere when the other side is shooting themselves in the foot?…..

GREAT job, Nancy!

TeresainFortWorth on June 19, 2010 at 2:57 PM

I detest this woman and everything she stands for; however, I would not be so quick to write this off as a boon to republicans. I think we will soon see that there is a method to her madness even though we cannot see it just now. She is ruthless.

IrishEi on June 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

This

Guardian on June 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

But she can bounce her grand kids in her lap while holding the gavel!

/Gibson

SouthernGent on June 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

I’ve been reading this report from ABC News’ Z. Byron Wolf since last night,

I see your life is as dull as mine, Ed.

Knucklehead on June 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

Don’t tell Nancy!!

JimK on June 19, 2010 at 2:59 PM

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage

Hahaha…Republicans keeping an advantage? Don’t count on it.

ddrintn on June 19, 2010 at 2:59 PM

“The GOP couldn’t have possibly asked for a better political position even if they had begged Pelosi not to throw them into that briar patch.”

Why do I know that some RINO is going to hand this back to the Democrats on a silver platter…

“My frineds…”

Seven Percent Solution on June 19, 2010 at 3:00 PM

She clearly needs more office space.

SlaveDog on June 19, 2010 at 3:00 PM

However,,the Rs have always managed to pull defeat from the jaws of victory,,lets hope they are developing a spine,,,no fondling across the aisle……lets stand on principle and what is RIGHT/CORRECT for the country,, not the party or so the press will not “talk bad about you”.

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:01 PM

From the comments section of the ABC post:

On Wednesday last week the Dems in the Senate(along party lines) defeated a Republican bill that would have extended the “Doc Fix” for two years and extended unemployment again without raising the deficit. Why did they defeat it, because the Dems wanted their entire bill with the additional “Stimulus” money for their pet projects and union pay-offs without compromise and without paying for it.

Well, there ya go -

TeresainFortWorth on June 19, 2010 at 3:02 PM

Both ddrintn and Seven percent solution have it right. Repubs have honed the art of “defeat from the jaws of victory” to a science. That’s why I don’t donate to the party anymore. I give to specific candidates who espouse my beliefs.

codekeyguy on June 19, 2010 at 3:04 PM

Left off retiredeagle. Sorry!

codekeyguy on June 19, 2010 at 3:05 PM

Not a problem,,no offense taken,,,nobody listens to me anyway.

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:07 PM

Oh God.
Ed
Plz don’t use Pelosi and “Briar patch” in the same sentence
;-)

macncheez on June 19, 2010 at 3:09 PM

Brother McCain is probably thinking of a way to remedy this here situation. Oh wait, he’s running for reelection. The urge to go all mavericky is killing him. You know it is.

thekingtut on June 19, 2010 at 3:09 PM

Pelosi wants Republicans to help pass a “jobs bill” that is almost entirely a bailout of state budgets, one that violates the Pay-Go rules that Pelosi herself demanded this year, and got.

Is this the same ‘jobs bill’ that found the money to bailout state budgets by cutting unemployment benefits by $25 a week? The one that is transferring money from people who were laid off from private sector jobs to those with essentially guaranteed employment?

agmartin on June 19, 2010 at 3:14 PM

And if stamping her feat doesn’t work she’s going to hold her breath until the GOP gives her what she wants.

Stephen Macklin on June 19, 2010 at 3:26 PM

The Glenn Beck program is great today[Sat 19 june,1300 mdt]. Talking about ‘fiction’books that are coming or came true. Vince Flynn,, Ayn Rand, etc,,,,,,great stuff. I love Vince Flynn. Have been reading him ever since his first book,,”Term Limits”.

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:31 PM

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage for as long as it takes Pelosi to realize that she’s blown it.

yeah… let’s hope…

Republicans blow it in 5… 4… 3…

mankai on June 19, 2010 at 3:33 PM

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage

Hahaha…Republicans keeping an advantage? Don’t count on it.

ddrintn on June 19, 2010 at 2:59 PM

The Party of “Thank you sir ma’am, may we have another”? Hahaha!, indeed.

o_O

Spiny Norman on June 19, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Is this the same ‘jobs bill’ that found the money to bailout state budgets by cutting unemployment benefits by $25 a week? The one that is transferring money from people who were laid off from private sector jobs to those with essentially guaranteed employment?

agmartin on June 19, 2010 at 3:14 PM

Why yes. That’s the one! DOn’t you see how important it is for the Dems to keep their SEIU cubicle drones happy? You wouldn’t want the purpleshirts turning on them, would you?

Spiny Norman on June 19, 2010 at 3:36 PM

This

Guardian on June 19, 2010 at 2:58 PM

Actually, not!

AshleyTKing on June 19, 2010 at 3:38 PM

We must remember that only a small percentage of MD’s are members of the AMA. It is mostly academics. Thus, the AMA doesn’t really care whether or not the doc fix happens. It will not really affect the AMA that much.

Kermit on June 19, 2010 at 3:41 PM

Why does she need to worry.

Pelosi already has her on serfdom. She will just get a mansion of an office building for her staff’s relatives at $90,000 a month and send the bill to the air force. She will not give up her plane when she is gone. It is written into the law that no one read that she gets it for life cutesy of the air force.

tjexcite on June 19, 2010 at 3:46 PM

Even BP wouldn’t drill through the gas pockets in her mind.

meci on June 19, 2010 at 3:47 PM

That is why these people need to be taken to court on RICOH statutes , locked up, and loose all privileges.[The diff in Democrat party paperwork the states affirming Skippys eligibility is a good place to start,,,,signed by Pelosi]

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:51 PM

it won’t be Republicans who get the blame

they’ll get blamed….guaranteed….

dear leader continues blaming the gop in his weekly address

cmsinaz on June 19, 2010 at 3:54 PM

“My frineds…”
Seven Percent Solution on June 19, 2010 at 3:00 PM

yepper

cmsinaz on June 19, 2010 at 3:55 PM

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage for as long as it takes Pelosi to realize that she’s blown it.

Mh, that’s a BIG hope. Unfortunately our side is almost as dumb as the other, and as squishy.

Schadenfreude on June 19, 2010 at 3:55 PM

Is she starting to lose her grip on reality?

TheBigOldDog on June 19, 2010 at 3:56 PM

For the lying bastard that told us we could keep our doctors and keep our plans:

No we can’t.

My primary care provider decided she was doing herself no favor by staying at the clinic at which she practiced, and moved to a less uncertain position at a hospital.

Thanks for nothing, Failure-in-Chief.

hillbillyjim on June 19, 2010 at 3:57 PM

hillbillyjim on June 19, 2010 at 3:57 PM

How do I know that Obamacare is to blame?

She told me in plain English that was exactly the case.

hillbillyjim on June 19, 2010 at 4:04 PM

I’m not sure Republicans had anything to do with creating this “briar patch” Nancy’s dealing with:
The House isn’t going to pass any (more) spending bills less than 5 months before elections.
They can’t pass another “jobs” bill, because those have been dismal failures, especially Porkulus.
And remember, Nancy’s pushed every big spending bill as a “jobs” bill, including crap & tax.

As Ed pointed out, this “jobs” bill is to fund state and local jobs–how did that funding end up in Washington?
And they can’t fund something ObamaCare made obsolete like the doc fix, because that would be admitting that O-care robbed Medicare to pay for O-Care, which we, the smart people knew, but which Nancy and the Dems were hoping no-one would notice.
And then, if they try to fund the leaking holes of Medicare, starting with the doc fix, it’s an admission that Medicare’s going broke, too, before O-care’s even funded.
What a mess!
I love it!
And Republicans,en masse, voted against Porkulus and O-Care, so they’ve got that going for them.
The electorate, particularly the growing Tea Party Movement, doesn’t want to hear about any more spending out of D.C. and in fact, Congress is adjourning a week early for the summer.

Jenfidel on June 19, 2010 at 4:13 PM

The lame duck bunch is going to be a disaster. They are going to attempt to use Joe Biden and his one vote to get their 50 plus 1 on everything they do. We need to be very vigilant,,,,,they are going to be desperate,,,watch a cornered animal…..

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 4:16 PM

I blame botox…

right2bright on June 19, 2010 at 4:40 PM

That is why these people need to be taken to court on RICOH statutes , locked up, and loose all privileges.[The diff in Democrat party paperwork the states affirming Skippys eligibility is a good place to start,,,,signed by Pelosi]

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:51 PM

Which RICOH statutes would that be? The copier or the printer statutes? The acronym you’re looking for is RICO. BTW, What’s with all the double commas anyway?

PakviRoti on June 19, 2010 at 4:43 PM

Pelosi has handed the Senate Republicans the key to a filibuster not just in the Senate but also in the House, all to demand a massive expansion of the deficit on two separate fronts.

Evidence that Botox can pass through the blood-brain barrier???

landlines on June 19, 2010 at 4:48 PM

So this quote, “I see no reason to pass this inadequate bill until we see jobs legislation coming out of the Senate,” means that she will pass an inadequate bill if she sees new jobs legislation? That sounds kind of stupid.

JavelinaBomb on June 19, 2010 at 4:49 PM

She needn’t worry. Enough repugnicans will cut traitorous deals to faux this up too . Brown ? Scott Brown ? Brown ?….Brown .

borntoraisehogs on June 19, 2010 at 4:50 PM

retiredeagle on June 19, 2010 at 3:07 PM

Um, what?

pain train on June 19, 2010 at 5:04 PM

Pelosi struck a “combative tone” by refusing to act on a bill that, er, rescues Democrats from their heretofore unfulfilled payoff to the AMA in exchange for their support on ObamaCare.

But isn’t how it will be “spun” in the push media. It will be “spun” as Republicans blocking BOTH a doc fix AND a jobs bill. All the average person driving to work on Monday morning will hear on their car radio is how Republicans are obstructing both more money for doctors and more money for jobs.

crosspatch on June 19, 2010 at 5:15 PM

Let’s hope that Republicans manage to keep this advantage for as long as it takes Pelosi to realize that she’s blown it.

correct me if I’m wrong. but how did the DOC fix get passed in the Senate without GOp support. GOP has 41 senators which is enough to flibuster this bill. why would the GOP allow this bill to pass?

the GOP better start fighting Obama’s agenda instead of faking it. We are watching no matter how much Ed and Allah carry their water for them.

At this point in time there should be no bill that gets out of the Senate until Nov. The GOP has the power to shut down the Senate and they need to do just that.

unseen on June 19, 2010 at 5:17 PM

At this point in time there should be no bill that gets out of the Senate until Nov. The GOP has the power to shut down the Senate and they need to do just that.

unseen on June 19, 2010 at 5:17 PM

Tell that to the Maine sisters and Scott Brown. They seem to always be the ones to give Obama a rope.

Tasha on June 19, 2010 at 5:21 PM

So-o-o-o-o… Is Nancy “Thelma” or “Louise”?

Khun Joe on June 19, 2010 at 7:14 PM

Actually, not!

AshleyTKing on June 19, 2010 at 3:38 PM

Bad link.

massrighty on June 19, 2010 at 7:24 PM

I don’t know. I don’t want to hug the tar baby of trying to comment on that.

RINO in Name Only on June 19, 2010 at 8:10 PM

The Repubs need to run this as an ad day and night.Then ask her “where are the jobs”.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2U_-iIjwRTw

docflash on June 19, 2010 at 8:41 PM

Too bad R’s let the deficit-financed “docfix” through the Senate, even temporarily. They should insist on the docfix being financed with other spending cuts, to make good on the representations made by the health care bill’s managers (and, for that matter, the AMA).

Chuckles3 on June 19, 2010 at 9:48 PM

The RINO Senate has no cojones. They’ll just go along to get along so they don’t have to try to explain the doc fix, pay-go, etc, etc…

Making a fuss might hurt their chances to appear on the Sunday shows explaining how RINOs aren’t the party of NO just because there’s a N and O in RINO…

drfredc on June 20, 2010 at 1:00 AM

Only 17% of doctors belong to AMA. AMA don’t care about doctors, but about itself.

Dhuka on June 20, 2010 at 2:15 AM

And here we go, exactly as I expected it is being “spun” as Republicans being mean to the jobless.

That is why Pelosi sees this as a “victory”. The “average citizen” is going to be fed this as if it is the “mean” Republicans preventing benefits to the unemployed.

crosspatch on June 20, 2010 at 2:57 AM

The most ethical, transparent congress evah…..!

Tim_CA on June 20, 2010 at 10:48 AM

Every time I see a pic of Pelosi, I can’t help but think of the movie Brazil. Maybe Ed or Allah could save me the trouble and just use this pic instead

Fogpig on June 20, 2010 at 11:20 AM

Is she starting to lose her grip on reality?

TheBigOldDog on June 19, 2010 at 3:56 PM

Starting to lose her grip on Reality? Where have you been for the last year or so?

Who is John Galt on June 21, 2010 at 12:17 AM