Despite Progressive Objections House Committee Still On Track To Pass Bill


Of the 53 progressives who have signed a letter saying they won’t abide by the compromises Democratic leaders offered to Blue Dogs, none sit on the House Energy and Commerce Committee–the panel where health care legislation originally stalled, necessitating the concessions in the first place.

That leaves the legislation in decent shape to pass out of the committee in time for August recess. But this throws the bill’s prospects on the floor into some doubt. If the compromises Blue Dogs fought for–particularly a public option that isn’t tied to Medicare–are included in the legislation, and progressives stick to their pledge, then the bill won’t have enough votes to pass. But if the public option were to be restrengthened, it could alienate enough Blue Dogs to similarly imperil the legislation.


Brian Beutler is TPM’s senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he’s led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at