Here is what he told a dazed-sounding Neil Cavuto at Fox (emphasis in original):

Moments ago, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) announced that he is prepared to vote against the Senate health care bill in light of the recent decision to strip the public option and the Medicare buy-in provision from the legislation. Appearing on Fox Business’ Cavuto, Sanders said he’s “struggling with this,” but is inclined to vote against:

I’m struggling with this. As of this point, I’m not voting for the bill. … I’m going to do my best to make this bill a better bill, a bill that I can vote for, but I’ve indicated both to the White House and the Democratic leadership that my vote is not secure at this point. And here is the reason. When the public option was withdrawn, because of Lieberman’s action, what I worry about is how do you control escalating health care costs?

In addition, executives from Service Employees’ International Union (SEIU) and from the AFL-CIO are holding emergency meetings to decide whether they can still support the current bill now that it’s been stripped of both the public option and the Medicare expansion buy-in proposal.

While the White House attacks Howard Dean rather than Joe Lieberman, Senate and House Democrats are placing the blame on the White House:

“The president keeps listening to Rahm Emanuel,” said Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.). “No public option, no extending Medicare to 55, no nothing, an excise tax, God!” he exclaimed about the Senate health care bill to Roll Call. “The insurance lobby is taking over.”Rep. Dave Obey (D-Wis.), told Politico of Senate delays, “It’s ridiculous, and the Obama administration is sitting on the sidelines. That’s nonsense.”*

While many House Democrats have expressed anger with the Senate for the watered-down bill, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) argued that it was really Obama who let centrists take control. “Snowe? Stupak? Lieberman? Who left these people in charge?” he said. “It’s time for the president to get his hands dirty. Some of us have compromised our compromised compromise. We need the president to stand up for the values our party shares. We must stop letting the tail wag the dog of this debate.”

Kathy Kattenburg
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Copyright 2009 The Moderate Voice
  • SteveK

    I certainly hope he (Bernie Sanders) does vote against it.I haven’t watched Keith O (other than clips online) since July. Crooks and Liars has his special comment from this evening that explains why no one should support the current bill. Even those of you who have to hold your noses to listen to him might be surprised to find yourselves agreeing with him for a change. (If you covered your eyes and ears it just wouldn’t work)Here’s the link: Special Comment: Not Health, Not Care, Not ReformAs I’ve said before H-R 35-90 does not, and will not, affect me in any way shape or form. I do add however that if it passes I will have no sympathy or empathy for anyone foolish enough to allow it to happen… You’ll just have to “Eat Cake”!

    • vey9

      “As I’ve said before H-R 35-90 does not, and will not, affect me in any way shape or form.”

      That is a silly thing to say. There were lots of people that thought that the huge increase in the Financial Biz didn’t affect them. Now they are finding out differently.

      Even if you get your health care from a company that pays 100% (like a church order or the military) the health care biz has become so large that it affects every aspect of the economy including your income, just like the financial sector does.

  • Leonidas

    Bernie Sanders is a self avowed Socialist, not surprising he would vote no. I like Bernie, and think his views should be represented. I respect his personal integrity and his history on pork and earmarks. I disagree with many of his political stances, but I want him in Congress. He is also one on my top 5 list of people who I would like to have drinks with, I find him interesting and entertaining. Still not surprised a socialist like Sanders wouldn’t support the current legislation.

    Here is an interesting piece on the man
    The Socialist Senator
    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/21/magazine/21Sanders.t.html

  • tidbits

    The vote could be an interesting collage if liberal democrats (and an independent – Sanders) join with conservative republicans (and an independent – Lieberman) to put this bill out of its misery. Tell me again: who actually likes this bill other than the Insurance Institute, PHARMA, AHA, ABA and AMA?

  • dduck12

    Tell me again: who actually likes this bill other than the Insurance Institute, PHARMA, AHA, ABA and AMA?

    I’m no fan of this bill, but I also don’t think these people like it that much either. As, is, it would NOT pull in all those 30mil. patients/customers because of the weak mandate.

  • Leonidas

    Tell me again: who actually likes this bill other than the Insurance Institute, PHARMA, AHA, ABA and AMA?

    The GOP judging from the polls on this bill, they have to smile when they see them.

    • tidbits

      You may be correct, Leonidas.

    • dduck12

      The GOP judging from the polls on this bill, they have to smile when they see them”

      I assume you mean because it might get defeated.

      • Leonidas

        I assume you mean because it might get defeated.

        And how it is dragging the Democratic Party down.

        • dduck12

          I just hope it doesn’t come back to the GOP and smacks them in the face. Now is the time for the GOP to get a positive message out that they are not the party of No, but the party sincerely looking out for the country’s welfare. That they are not against HCR so they suggest a bi-partisan committee to carve out the good elements of the failed bills and craft a reasonable bi-partisan Health Care Improvement (HCI) bill. (And, it can’t be too expensive, the country never believed the no cost BS from the White House.)
          Dream on dduck.