Has Everyone Calmed Down Yet?

So it turns out I was wrong, and Martha Coakley, aka the Worst Candidate Ever, actually did manage to lose an election in Massachusetts to a right-wing Republican. And, apparently, among the many other attributes the new Senator-elect from Massachusetts possesses, he has the ability to make the collective internets lose its fucking mind. Or maybe that’s Washington Democrats, who are apparently suddenly wavy on healthcare reform.

Well far be it from me to be a party pooper, but it does seem worth pointing out that, for all the freakout, very little is actually different today than it was last Monday. The House and the Senate can come to an agreement on how to move forward together? Well the fact that Republicans can filibuster anything they want doesn’t help matters, but they couldn’t really figure much out regarding collective action this time last week either. House progressives don’t like the Senate bill and don’t want to vote for it? That might be a problem, but they didn’t like the Senate bill Tuesday morning either.

I tend to agree with the broad consensus that the House and Senate should pass a reconcilliation bill amending the Senate bill in agreeable ways, and f course ways that are possible through reconcilliation, after which the House should vote to pass the Senate bill. I also agree that if the two chambers can’t work out an agreement that can get enough Democratic votes in the useless upper chamber, that the House ought to go ahead and pass the Senate bill anyway. Yeah they’ll hate it, but it’s still better than the status quo, and if that’s the best that can be done, then that’s what you do. I also sympathize with the House where it comes to negotiating with the Senate; the filibuster gives the Senate a huge upper hand in negotiations, and makes a mockery of the notion of equal chambers. But it is what it is, for now anyway, and the House has to put aside its pride and do what’s best for the people. There will be a time to take on the Senate, but this is not it.

Outside of that, would everyone please calm down? It’s been 4 days since Brown won. That the House hasn’t passed something yet, or that the House and the Senate haven’t quite come to an agreement, isn’t that worrying. The Senate is the hard part, but they’ve already cleared their procedural ball. If 256 House Democrats, including the progressive caucus, put the bullet in healthcare reform, well, we’ve got bigger problems I guess.