RUSH: Here’s Chris Dodd. Let’s grab sound bites 33 and 34. He was on CNBC today saying health care is in trouble, hanging by a thread. Becky Quick, the coanchor on Squawk Box, said, ‘You mentioned the health care bill making its way toward the president’s desk. Do you believe that that bill’s going to make its way back to the Senate before Obama has to sign off on it?’
DODD: This is a — a precarious road. And, look, this is far from a perfect piece of legislation. I’ll be the first to admit and tell you that this is going to require a lot more work for future Congresses and future administrations to get this right. But in the absence of getting it forward, moving it forward, so I’m hopeful that will happen but it is hanging by a thread obviously. One or two votes could determine the outcome of this bill.
RUSH: Now, I don’t know what he’s doing here, if he’s sounding a warning bell to try to shore up support for it or create panic. It is hanging by a thread. I mean there’s so much pressure being brought to bear on Ben Nelson. Nelson’s out there, ‘We shouldn’t have even done this, we should have been focused on the economy,’ and Blanche Lincoln, ‘I don’t think Ben Nelson of Nebraska shoulda got what he got,’ and Schwarzenegger, ‘I want the same thing that Ben Nelson got in Nebraska, the Cornhusker State.’ There is a lot going on but all of it’s going on behind closed doors. Nobody knows anything. About all we know is that the public option will not survive. The public option won’t survive. But there will be no choice but than to have a public option because what’s going to be in place of the public option are going to be some of the most arduous regulations on the insurance business that they will not be able to stay in business. They’re going to be required to ensure preexisting conditions. They’re going to be required to sell insurance the day before somebody has life or death surgery. They’re going to be required to do all these things and to raise premiums to the point that people can’t afford them. They’re not going to be able to make a profit, they’ll go out of business and people are going to say, ‘Oh, my God, what are we going to do, they’re all closing down, the government’s going to have to –‘ and that’s how it’s going to happen.
And here’s Chris Dodd, ‘I’ll be the first to admit this is gonna require a lot more work for future Congresses and future administrations to get this right’? Everybody’s admitting this thing is a turkey. Everybody is admitting it’s a rotten piece of stuff and it ought to not happen at all. But they’ve gotta give Obama something. They gotta give him something for the State of the Union. The translation of this is, ‘Well, we don’t have the public option and we don’t have single payer so future Congresses are going to have to get that.’ That’s what he means when he says it’s going to require a lot more work for future Congresses, future administrations to get this right, meaning that they’ve had to compromise on too much of what they didn’t want in order to get what they got in the Senate. Everybody knows they’re going to be moving forward and adding onto this year after year after year and pretty soon — I don’t want to be too much of a downer here but pretty soon what’s going to happen, it won’t be long — you know like right now Social Security is an automatic for the Democrats every election. All they have to do is say, ‘Republicans want to take away your Social Security.’ And for a while, the seasoned citizens believed that.
If that’s all you got and somebody you trust, a politician that you voted for says evil Republicans want to take it away from you, kick you out of your house, you can’t chance it. It doesn’t work so well anymore, but health care is going to become the new third rail. And Republicans want to take away your health care and your health insurance. That’s what they want to win the election for. They don’t like the fact that you now are fully covered and fully insured and they want to take it away. That’s what’s going to happen. If this thing gets passed into law, signed into law that’s the way the Democrats are going to keep it there as they tinker with it, bloat it and expand it even more. The next question: ‘Senator, you mentioned this is hanging on by a thread, maybe one or two votes. Who among your senators who voted for this in the past do you think might step away?’
DODD: You’d have to be living on the moon not to follow what’s happened over the last month or so in terms of — of those who are kind of hanging in the balance. I know a lot of the people on the more progressive side are deeply disappointed that we don’t have a public option now moving forward in this bill. So everyone feels I guess to some degree who have been for this that they would have liked something different, and the president’s deeply involved. I spent about two, two-and-a-half hours with him last Thursday at the White House along with Max Baucus talking about the bill and — and the differences between the House and the Senate version. So a lot of work needs to be done but I can tell you the staffs are working literally overtime all weekend to try and resolve those differences.
RUSH: And we’ll be right back after this.