Senior officials with the Obama administration are confident that the House of Representatives will pass the Senate’s version of the healthcare bill within the next week and warned Republicans who are fighting for reelection in November to think carefully before voting against the measure.
“Make my day,” said senior White House political advisor David Axelrod defiantly. “Let’s have that fight. I’m ready to have that—and every member of Congress ought to be willing to have that debate as well.”
However, despite the bravado of some of Obama’s key aides, the chief vote counter on the healthcare issue, Democratic House Whip James Clyburn, admitted later that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi does not yet have the 216 votes necessary to pass the measure. Most commentators believe the Democrats are approximately six votes shy of adopting the Senate’s version of the legislation, The Los Angeles Times reports.
Meanwhile, House Minority Leader John Boehner said that he strongly doubts Pelosi has the support to pass the bill, and he and fellow Republican leaders will do “everything [they] can to prevent this bill from becoming law—plain and simple.”