GILLESPIE: I've never felt this -- this is the first time I've thought of this, but I've got to tell you something. I know that they were willing to sacrifice 20 conservative Democrats, or moderate Democrats, to get this done. I think they risk losing the House if they try to pass this bill and they jam it through the way it's written.
MYERS: That's not going to pass the Senate, so we know that's not going to...
GILLESPIE: But it's going to pass the House, and those House members are going to have voted for all these things.
MYERS: It will depend on what gets worked out in the Senate before they go to vote in the House.
BROWNSTEIN: Can I just make two quick points?
I mean, your point about, sort of, the throwing everything in the shopping car -- the core of this bill, an individual mandate, a mandate on individuals to buy insurance in return for fundamental insurance reform, paid for by slowing the growth of Medicare spending is the John Chafee/Bob Dole alternative to Hillary Clinton in 1993.
And it says something about the evolution of the party that, regardless of what else was in there, the individual mandate by itself would be a bridge too far for almost...
STEPHANOPOULOS: Just stop there one second. Because I want -- that's -- you're right. On the other hand, now let's go hardball politics. When this is in an election context next year, what you have for the House members to (inaudible) they're going to be saddled with $400 billion in Medicare cuts, and if this tax on high-priced insurance plans passes, something that a lot of their own supporters will call a middle-class tax increase.
How do you fight that?
BROWNSTEIN: Yes. The heart -- the heart of the choice is going to be whether George or Al are right -- Reverend Sharpton -- is right about what Americans want from government.
Because what you are saying is that there's a fundamentally Reaganite moment, here, in which people are saying, look, government is just doing too much and we want it rolled back.
What you're saying is that people are angry that government seems to be protecting the rich and not doing anything for me. And to the extent that Obama and the Democrats can portray health care as something that's not for Wall Street but helping to provide security for middle-class Americans, they have a better chance of selling it than it might now appear.
WILL: Here is why we have two parties. The Reverend Sharpton say the American people need protected by government. Some of us think we need protected from government.
BROWNSTEIN: And that's the core of the argument.
WILL: In this...
SHARPTON: But you guys lost the election a year ago, so I think the American people have spoken on that...
WILL: The Constitution is very picky about this. We keep having elections.
SHARPTON: Every four years. We have three left.
WILL: Two years -- every two years.
STEPHANOPOULOS: So are you worried about this wave, if Ed Gillespie -- is Ed Gillespie right, if this passes, that Democrats could lose the House?
SHARPTON: I think that I'm concerned how it comes out. I think Dee Dee is right. I don't think that it will out in the hard lines that it is outlined. I'm sure that he will portray it that way.