This morning, in his weekly address, the President began to outline what he thinks should happen next, to reform US health care delivery (at about 2 minutes in):
Next week, President Obama's concrete, detailed blueprint for passage will be available -- but what is already clear is that Senator Harry Reid, Chairwoman Nancy Pelosi (and a host of others) will be formally "green-lighted" by President Obama to move a reconciliation bill through the US House -- based mostly on the already-passed Senate bill's provisions, but including a newly-created federal insurance rate setting authority, and hardening the repeal of antitrust exemptions for insurers.
The time-line for, and ability of the Republicans to come forward, and join the process constructively is about wink out, leaving them behind. That will leave them to explain -- on the campaign trail, this coming fall -- why they [in-]effectively attempted to block many of the very same measures they campaigned for just last year.
As we all now know, Republicans passed Newt Gingrich's "Contract With America" (what many subsequently referred to as the "Contract ON America" -- for its oppressive takings from the lower ranks of society, and its many generous gifts, to the wealthiest one percent) with 51 Senate votes -- through reconciliation. That was every bit as fundamental a re-ordering of the way we govern, at the federal level, as this health care package is. So it will ring ironic, and hollow, if the opponents of reform now complain that reconciliation is not an appropriate mechanism to enact important packages.
Next, up? Once again -- in a second curtain call -- Harry Reid and the Blenders!