It begins: House Dems backing away from Obama's deadline for ObamaCare

So how long did Gibbs’s “March 18 or bust” ultimatum last? Four hours maybe?

Decide for yourselves what this means. Either Obama’s own caucus no longer takes him seriously or he’s so removed from the political realities of this vote in the House that he’s placing literally impossible demands on them. “Both” is an acceptable answer.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said the Democrats would like to get a final vote by Congress’ Easter break, which begins March 29. But he also said “the world doesn’t fall apart” if that timeline isn’t met — a nod to the many missed deadlines that have characterized the health overhaul effort so far.

Democratic leaders are contending with a host of undecided lawmakers who want to see the fine print before making a decision. Hoyer said final language and a cost estimate should come back from the Congressional Budget Office by the end of next week.

“At this point in time we don’t have a bill,” Hoyer said. “It’s a little difficult to count votes if you don’t have a bill.”…

“Every legislative lift is a heavy lift around here,” Pelosi said.

Here’s Madam Speaker in Baghdad Bob mode this afternoon, assuring the 34 percent or so of Americans who like the bill that, oh yes, it shall be passed. Not pictured here: Her lie about what Reid’s bill does to abortion funding. Speaking of which, the leader of the House’s pro-choice caucus insists that Stupak is bluffing about having the votes to sink the bill, but I’m getting a distinct Bob-ish vibe from her too. Quote:

“He says he has 10 or 11 people who will vote no, but a lot of those people voted no the first time, but there are also a lot of other people who voted no the first time who now want to support the bill,” she said.

Er, no, not “a lot of those people” voted no the first time. In fact, none of them did. But never mind that. Who are these many no votes she claims are now ready to flip to yes? Give us one name. One.