Just a Reminder

The president and the Democrats aren't suffering Baucus and Conrad voluntarily. There's a very precise reason why the Finance Committee has been allowed to wank around for so long. Ezra Klein responds to a reader in an online chat:

Finance Committee: Since there are already 4 bills that have been approved by committees in the Senate, why do need a 5th from the Finance Committee?

Ezra Klein: You need a bill out of the Senate and the House. The House is set. In the Senate, the HELP Committee has passed a bill. But the HELP Committee doesn't have jurisdiction over Medicaid, Medicare, or revenues. So the largest pieces of the bill -- how do you pay? do you expand Medicaid? what happens to Medicare? --are missing in the HELP committee's proposal. To build a complete bill for the floor, you need the Finance Committee, for better or for worse.

So the answer to the "Why the shit is Obama praising Baucus?!" attack is simple: Because he has to. Without Baucus, there's no healthcare reform. If there's anyone to blame for this, blame FDR who established this precedent by handing off Social Security to the Finance Committee in 1935.