Two recent developments give me strong confidence that national health reform will happen this year.
First is the decision by Congressional leaders — under strong pressure from President Obama — to set a deadline (October 15) after which the Senate can pass health reform by a simple majority, without a filibuster. This is the budget reconciliation process, which allows for limited debate and a majority vote. All the details are in this and this post by Jonathan Cohen (“reconciliation is a game-changer”) and this one by Ezra Klein (“It’s hard to overstate the importance of this decision. This could be the day that health care reform went from being unlikely to inevitable.”). There’s also some good background analysis in the Times, too.
Second is this video, which, if it achieves viral status, will clinch the deal: