All indications are that Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi will skip the formal conference committee process to reconcile the Senate and House versions of Obamacare but instead will reconcile their difference through closed-door negotiations.
But back in 2006 Harry Reid stood on the Senate floor and complained about legislative deal-making outside of the formal conference committee process when the Senate was discussing asbestos legislation. He also whined about the use of “managers’ amendments” to create legislative deals. Reid of course used “managers amendments” to slip in all of those secret deals in the Senate version of Obamacare. But back in 2006 he said:
“Of course, nobody can see the managers’ amendment. It is composed of over 40 amendments. How could anyone vote for a piece of legislation such as that — a managers’ amendment with 42 separate amendments?
Now, these amendments were not put in in a conference committee. People complain about that. But at least in a conference committee, you have people working together, sticking things in. Sometimes Democrats complain and sometimes Republicans complain — whoever is in the minority here. Well, we didn’t get enough consultation; you cut us out of the process. But at least you had a group of Democrats and Republicans in the process. Here, you have one person making a decision as to what is going to be in the managers’ amendment. There is no way to know what is in it. How could anyone say: ‘OK’? You have taken care of me, but I don’t want to see the other 40 amendments — -because with this legislation, similar to all legislation, you put something in one spot, and you have to take something out someplace else.”
Nice speech Harry, maybe you could be tied up with duct tape and be forced to watch it a few thousand times, until you told us whether you were full of crap in 2006 or today, my vote is both.