A TIMELINE OF EVENTS…. Several readers have asked what the schedule looks like for today, in terms of what votes are likely to happen when. It’s been tough to put together a timeline, and scrapping “deem and pass” means the process will take a bit longer.
CBS News, however, put this timeline together, which is consistent with what I’m hearing from Hill aides:
2 p.m.: The House will debate for one hour the rules of debate for the reconciliation bill and the Senate bill.
3 p.m.: The House will vote to end debate and vote on the rules of the debate.
3:15 p.m.: The House will debate the reconciliation package for two hours.
5:15 p.m.: The House will vote on the reconciliation package.
5:30 p.m.: The House will debate for 15 minutes on a Republican substitute and then vote on the substitute.
6 p.m.: The House will vote on the final reconciliation package.
6:15 p.m.: If the reconciliation bill passes, the House will immediately vote on the Senate bill, without debate.
Also note, if the House approves the Senate bill, it will go directly to the White House. It’s possible, if not likely, that President Obama would sign it into law this evening.
But if the vote counting goes poorly for the Democratic leadership today, it’s also possible that Speaker Pelosi could delay a vote until tomorrow (or later), if she decides the votes aren’t there and she needs more time to get them.
For now, however, the timeline published by CBS looks about right. It’s subject to revision, of course, but it’s something to keep in mind as you plan your day.
Update: OK, it now looks like this schedule isn’t even close to being right. Officials circulated a revised timeline, which points to final votes closer to 9:30 p.m. (ET), and even that may be optimistic.
If you’re wondering why this can’t be a quicker process, note that GOP lawmakers are trying a variety of delaying tactics to drag this out as long as they can.