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The health care reform express seems to be underway at last – and Republicans are throwing frothing-at-the-mouth tantrums that seem to include the type of impotent threat that characterize bad losers everywhere. Consider Tom Coburn’s promise:

If you voted no and you vote yes and you lose your election and you think any nomination to a federal position isn’t going to be held in the Senate, I’ve got news for you, it’s going to be held

Not really much of a threat, though, since, as Faiz Shakir of ThinkProgress observes, Coburn is describing a unlikely situation that could only ever affect a small number of people.

Or take the statement released by Indiana’s Dan Burton on the subject of the Republicans’ two failed attempts to stop the process today:

“We didn’t stop it, but now we have their names.  Today, 222 Democrats are on record for supporting the unconstitutional “Slaughter Solution,” which will allow them to pass the Senate health care bill without actually voting on it.

Apart from the hypocritical mischaracterization of the the “deem and pass” maneuver to which he is referring (since is in his fourteenth House term, he has to have supported the “deeming” process that Republicans used 36 times in 2005 and 2006) – I guess he means that his big, bad Republcan gang will make Democrats pay for doing what they are paid to do – watch out for the welfare of the people.

Well, Dan Burton, I’ve got news for you – we can all play at that game. Looking at the roll call, it seems that the members of the Missouri delegation that voted to move things along are Lacy Clay (D-1st); Russ Carnahan (D-3rd) Emanual Cleaver (D-5th). It is worth noting that Ike Skelton (D-4th), although he has indicated that he will not vote for the final bill, joined his fellow Democrats today to allow the process to go ahead – he ought to get some credit for that at least.

It would be great if these reliable Democrats (even, this time, Skelton) got some encouragement. You know what I mean – maybe send some thank you emails, letters or phone calls – or even a little donation, either now or when health care reform, God willing, is a done deal. On the other hand, I am sure nobody would take it amiss if anyone wanted to to send a few coals to the usual suspects in the Party of No: Todd Akin (R-2nd), Roy Blunt (R-7th), Jo Ann Emerson (R-8th), Sam Gravaes (R-6th), and last among the least,  Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-9th).