Monday, December 21, 2009

Health Care Reform Wheeling And Dealing, Update On David Goldman, Punished For Pregnancy, RIP Brittany Murphy, And Double Dose Of Jack Gray!

Hi everyone. Happy New Week! Erica Hill is taking over anchoring duties for us while Anderson Cooper is hopefully enjoying a little R & R. We begin with the ongoing saga of health care reform, which moved one step forward late last night with a successful cloture vote in the Senate. But what did it take to wrangle that magical number of 60? Well, a lot.

In a Dana Bash piece, we learn of all the little (and big) sweeteners that "helped" everyone (every Democrat, anyway) get on-board. Senator Ben Nelson got a great Medicaid deal for his state of Nebraska, Bernie Sanders of Vermont now has funds for community health centers he's been championing,...the list goes on.

As you might imagine, Republicans are none too pleased. In fact, they're accusing the Democrats of bribery, which I'm sorry, just made me laugh out loud. Are they kidding? I mean, seriously? Seriously? As Dana says, they basically mastered the art of deal-making. That's right Republicans; the Democrats learned it from you!

Next up, Tom Foreman takes us to the Magic Wall where we get a headache over the difficulties of reconciliation. This isn't going to be pretty, people. The House bill and the Senate bill have to come together and lovingly make a baby bill. And right now the parents are just not that into each other. The public option, abortion, cost, illegal immigrants...all still need a final agreement. Yes, this will surely end in tears of sadness.

Moving on now to a clip of Tom Coburn bitching about the Democrats, which is laughable because Tom Coburn is a huge dick. We're then joined by David Gergen, Tanya Acker, and Michael Gerson for discussion. It's good that they're pointing out the wheeling and dealing, but the narrative developing here is just kinda dumb.

The Gerg does some concern trolling, though I don't think we expect anything different from him. Tanya does a nice job of cutting through the BS by pointing out that, duh, this is how things work in Washington. Erica then weirdly steers the questioning to how open Harry Reid is being about the process. Yes, because transparency is the real problem here. Michael tries to act like he's never seen anything like this before, but that statement is too stupid for me to even respond to.

The segment wraps up with poll numbers on health care reform--bad ones. Pretty irrelevant with no internals or context. Anyway, though it's great 360 is diving into what it took to get this vote, I really hate that they're taking their cues from the Republicans. The hypocrisy of the opposition party is stunning. If this were the Daily Show, we'd be played a clip to demonstrate this. You can't tell me they don't exist.

Transitioning now to Erica speaking with David Goldman by phone. You'll remember that David is in Brazil trying to get back his son. He's currently still being jerked around by the process. Of note is this from Erica: "I know you have said that, were he to come home with you -- and that is what I think pretty much almost everyone is hoping for at this point -- that you wouldn't keep him from his Brazilian family; you would allow them to visit."

This is of note because later when Erica introduces the attorney for Sean Goldman's Brazilian family, she says this: "As you know, though, we don't take sides on 360." Erm, but you kinda just did. Frankly, even if she hadn't said that, all of the coverage of this story has so far been heavily skewed towards Goldman. And hey, there's nothing wrong with that. But 360 has a chronic disconnect regarding what they say, and what makes it to air.

On now to a discussion with Thomas Kenniff, former JAG officer, and Kayla Williams, former Army sergeant, regarding the new rule that soldiers in northern Iraq will face court-martial if they get pregnant or impregnate someone else. Lots of controversy here. In fact, Thomas doesn't think it's even legal. Kayla brings a great perspective to the table, pointing out issues such as the prevalence of sexual assault, lack of emergency contraception, and repercussions on a child who has both parents in jail. This was a very good discussion that was unfortunately made slightly comical by the b-roll of soldiers mixed in with pregnant bellies. Seriously?

Next we have a preview of Tom Foreman's Christmas Eve/New Year's Eve special. Normally I don't deem previews worthy of mention, but zoh my God, Jack Gray! Yes, the Jack Gray has hit the big time and will be appearing in the special. You know all those VH1 "I love the whatevers" series? The ones where semi-famous people talk snarkily about events past? That's going to be Jack! Except, you know, on CNN. Frankly, I think he was born for this job. The preview contains Jack talking about Sully the Magic Pilot. Aw, the little blogger is all grow-ed up. Suddenly that webcast cameo seems so long ago. *tear*

Transitioning from the exciting to the really, really depressing. Actress Brittany Murphy dead at 32-years-old. So sad. I didn't know much about her, but I loved her in "Clueless" and thought she seemed nice. A Randi Kaye piece breaks things down, but I say we resist speculating and just move on until the autopsy results are back.

I'm going to skip the "shot" tonight. Why? To make more room for a double dose of Jack Gray! Besides his upcoming Big Time on-air debut, Jack also recently hit the one million mark with his Twitter followers. Seeing as though I was probably his 100th-and-something follower, this is pretty amazing to me. Anyway, this celebration is complete with video of Jack at his desk--or a desk-- working hard. Also? It looks like he has bed head. Now some might argue it appears he just removed a big headset, but I'm going with bed head. Because that's how I roll.

A pretty good show tonight actually. I wasn't sure I was going to watch this week (stuff to do!), but I'm glad I did. Congrats to Jack. Someday I'll be telling everyone that I knew him when. (To read his blogs, go to my links. Follow him here. And follow me too!)

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