Democrat Massa Resigns – to Squeaker Pelosi’s Gain
posted at 8:47 pm on March 6, 2010 by Dafydd ab Hugh
Alas, Squeaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Haight-Ashbury, 100%) just picked up a vote for ObamaCare. Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY, not yet rated) has announced his resignation from the House effective Monday, due to ethics charges (sexual harassment). On November 7th, 2009, Massa was one of the 39 Democrats who voted against the House ObamaCare bill; see this roll-call vote.
There are two paths forward:
- Ultra, ultra-liberal New York Gov. David Paterson might appoint a replacement, if state law permits; Paterson would unquestionably appoint a liberal who will vote for ObamaCare, converting Massa’s Nay into a Yea — a big help to Pelosi.
If the law does not permit, or if Paterson doesn’t move quickly enough (being embroiled in his own ethics charges — bribery), then Pelosi still gains.
There currently are only 432 members of the House, instead of the usual 435 (two resigned and one, Jack Murtha, dropped dead); to pass the Senate version of ObamaCare in the House the Democrats need an actual majority… which is 217, because 216 is only 50%.
But with Massa’s resignation, that leaves only 431 members; and 216 is an actual majority (50.1%) of 431. Since Massa voted against ObamaCare, Pelosi needs one fewer vote from the same number of Yes-men… so she doesn’t even need to convert Massa from Nay to Yea.
Either way, Speaker Pelosi has picked up one net vote since yesterday. So it goes.
However, three other House members are embroiled in their own ethics charges: Reps. Charlie Rangel (D-NY, 100%), Maxine Waters (D-CA, 100%), and Laura Richardson (D-CA, 100%); and each of this lot actually voted for the House version of ObamaCare. Thus if any of them is forced to resign in the next month or so, that would make up for Massa. (If two or three of them leave, that would put even more pressure on the Speaker, of course.)
It’s up, it’s down, it’s a yo-yo.
Cross-posted on Big Lizards…