As Congress enters the final stretches of the health care debate, members are looking for the best way forward following the election of Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) to the U.S. Senate. One path being suggested is for the House to pass the Senate bill as is and then later use the reconciliation process — which requires only a simple majority vote in the Senate — to amend the bill and make it more progressive and acceptable to members of the House.
This evening, Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) appeared on MSNBC’s Hardball With Chris Matthews to advocate for this plan. As Grayson floated the idea, the MSNBC host repeatedly attacked the congressman, claiming that Grayson is part of the “outside world represented by the netroots” that doesn’t understand how Congress operates:
MATTHEWS: This is the problem, Congressman. Every night we deal with two worlds, the real world of Congress that has to do things and get things passed, and this outside world represented by the netroots and people like yourself, who play this game.
GRAYSON: What are you talking about? I sit in meetings with the Democratic caucus with meetings every week! I’m telling you, this is what we’re talking about. This is what the leadership is telling us.
MATTHEWS: We’ll make a side bet that it’s not going to happen. Congressman Alan Grayson, a true believer that you can get things done by willing it to get done! [laughs]