Steven Ertelt, LifeNews.com
Senate Democrats have officially given up their fight to confirm Donald Berwick, the rationing advocate President Barack Obama nominated to become the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the chief implementer of Obamacare.
Berwick has been deluged with criticism from pro-life advocates, who cite his fondness for rationing and his failure to level with a Senate committee about his pro-rationing views.
Obama previously used a recess appointment to place Berwick in the prominent position after the Senate couldn’t find enough votes to overcome a Republican-led filibuster against his nomination. A recess appointment can be used when the Senate is not in session but the appointment is temporary and Berwick, if not confirmed by the Senate, has to leave the position by the end of the year. In January, Obama renominated Berwick to his current post.
However, a Politico report today indicates Democrats have given up any hope of confirming Berwick following a letter they received signed by 42 Republican senators who said they would continue pressing a filibuster against him. A White House spokesman indicated top Democrats “can do the arithmetic” and see no way to obtain the 60 votes necessary to cut off debate and proceed to a vote on Berwick’s nomination.
Democratic Senate Finance Committee staffers, according to Politico, met with top health care lobbyists on Friday and said the Berwick nomination is officially dead and there will be no committee hearing on his nomination. They said top Democrats would eventually discuss the “next steps” for a new nomination for the post.