Healthcare Reform is Not Dead

Jim VandeHei said on Morning Joe today that healthcare is dead.

This, of course, is ridiculous.

While Emanuel is suggesting that it's going to wait until after jobs and financial regulatory reform, it might actually need the time to clear the amendment reconciliation process.

Meanwhile, Axelrod said yesterday:

"There were plenty of people who said before the speech last night, just stand up there and say 'It's over.' Say 'We tried,' and move on because it's too politically difficult," Axelrod said. "And that's not what he did and we are working closely with folks on the Hill to develop the way forward and get this done and that's all we're focused on, on health care, is getting it done."

It's easy to freak out these days. I'm as guilty as anyone. But I simply can't see the Democrats failing to pass healthcare reform. Democrats would lose their majorities. Republicans would take over and, eventually, they would do the only thing they could accomplish in a completely gridlocked government: investigating and impeaching the president. And before you chastise me for being over-the-top, remember the 1990s.

But that's all political. Failing to pass healthcare reform will succeed in killing 44,000 Americans every year. It's always worth reinforcing that Democratic failure would mean a new 9/11 every month. Unacceptable.