Health Reform Facing Bloody Battle in Senate

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This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," November 9, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: And the liberal takeover of your health care system moved forward on Saturday evening. When midnight struck in the garden of Nancy and Rahm, America was one step closer to a universal nightmare, or is it? Now despite the San Francisco speaker's victory lap Saturday night, this bill is far from becoming law.

Some senators are already saying the bill is dead on arrival. But more importantly, the trials and tribulations of the House of Representatives may not be over. Many Blue Dog Democrats only voted for the bill on Saturday night after an amendment was approved that specifically addressed concerns that federal money may be spent on abortions.

But Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Wassermann Schultz of Florida says she expects that provision to be stripped when the bill goes through conference. And The Washington Post reported today that Colorado Democratic congresswoman Diana DeGette is circulating a petition with at least 40 signatures of other Democrats claiming that they won't support final passage of the bill unless the abortion provision is taken out.

As a result, it appears that Pelosi's arm twisting has actually intensified the internal war within the Democratic Party because without those 40 Democrats, the bill won't pass. But without the Blue Dogs who supported the abortion amendment, it may not pass either.

And joining me tonight with much more is the author of The New York Times number one bestseller "Catastrophe." By the way, a great Christmas gift.

Video: Watch Sean's interview


HANNITY: If people haven't got an copy of it yet. All right, so you literally have.

MORRIS: Something for Santa to carry.

HANNITY: All right. You've got — the senators are saying no way. OK? Lieberman is saying he'll filibuster. You've got the blue — you've got in the Senate they're saying no way they're going to get a government option. Then you've got these two internal battles that I just described. How do you see this?

MORRIS: Well, the fight over the public option is the focus at the moment of the Senate debate and the abortion provision as well. I don't personally much care about either one. I think that the bill, even with the abortion amendment and even without the public option, is plenty injurious itself.

That would leave the Medicare cuts, the huge payments by the uninsured. One of the provisions in the Pelosi bill is you actually can go to jail for not having health insurance. It says that if you don't have health insurance, you have to pay a fine of 2.5 percent of your income to the government. And if you don't, you face $250,000 or five years in prison.

Can you imagine your prison yard, what are you in for? Murder. I'm in for rape. I didn't have health insurance.


HANNITY: I don't mean to laugh but I mean this is a reality. But nobody really knows the provisions. Again, it all — the bill changed since we got handed that monstrosity.

MORRIS: Right.

HANNITY: So Nancy Pelosi — they think this is a big victory. How do they overcome these internal battles in the Democratic Party or do they not overcome them?

MORRIS: They overcome them.

HANNITY: So we will have a bill?

MORRIS: Well, right now we will. It's the current status of public opinion, 42-55, were in the last poll, 45-52 opposing it. If those numbers hold and if they hold and you only have a 10 or 15-point margin against it, yes. This bill is going to pass probably without a public option but it's going to go through.

But if we can move public opinion five more points in each direction.


MORRIS: If we can knock the support down into the high 30's and increase the opposition up to 60, which we can do, then I think we have a very, very good chance of defeating the whole thing entirely.

HANNITY: You're saying even with the jail provision that — I guarantee you 90 percent of Americans don't know about.

MORRIS: Yes, sure.

HANNITY: Even with the massive Medicare cuts, $500 billion in this bill, and the massive tax increases.


HANNITY: ... which are included in this bill and penalizing business and individuals in the bill, you're saying that the Democrats will overcome public opinion, pass it. Is it political suicide?

MORRIS: Yes, you saw what happened in Jersey and you saw what happened in Virginia. I did an interesting bit of math the other day. I took the Jersey and the Virginia results, and I compared them with 1993. And in 1993, the year before the 1994 wipeout when the Republicans took everything.

HANNITY: Right. For the first time in 40 years.

MORRIS: The Virginia race went Republican race 58-41, same numbers as this time. The Jersey race went Republican 49-48, this time it was 49-45. So yes, it's right on track to replicate 1994. But we can.

HANNITY: Then why would the Democrats — why would they walk the plank?

MORRIS: Well, it isn't quite clear enough to them that this is a disaster. We have to make it a lot clearer. We have to be a lot more focused to turning this thing around.


MORRIS: That's why in, please go to it, and follow the step-by-step advice about how to defeat this.

HANNITY: All right. I can't let you go without asking you about Fort Hood and this guy, apparently, there are reports now for some period of time that our government knew that he was trying to contact Al Qaeda.

MORRIS: Right.

HANNITY: The question then is why wouldn't they have removed him?


HANNITY: From this position.

MORRIS: Well, all these questions are going to become more and more pertinent and we're going to see that it's because we've tied the hands of the intelligence community, that they're so worried about stripping somebody of their civil rights or being accused of falsely accusing somebody and being racially insensitive that they literally are worried themselves about being indicted.

HANNITY: So you're saying political correctness could have kept colleagues in our own government.


HANNITY: ... from stopping somebody that they knew was dangerous because they didn't want to take on somebody because radical Islamic roots?

MORRIS: Precisely. And I also think that the hoops that Obama has been jumping through to avoid you calling this terrorism, it's an act of violence, they're comparing it to the Columbine shooter.

Look, you don't have to have a group to commit a terrorist act. A lone wolf can do it. The difference between murder and terrorism is motivation. And this guy obviously had a political motivation which makes it terrorism. It makes the first domestic occurrence on American soil since 9/11.

HANNITY: Last question. Why won't anybody say what you just said and I've said?

MORRIS: I don't know. This is the — this is the first attack since 9/11 and it's a consequence of the unilateral disarmament that Barack Obama has brought to the intelligence community.

HANNITY: It's not a War on Terror, this is man-caused disaster. We can't use the phrase War on Terror, Dick.

MORRIS: Right.

HANNITY: We're not allowed to anymore.

MORRIS: And he's done everything he can to put out this guy's psychological history, his grumbling, the assignment.

HANNITY: It's unbelievable.

MORRIS: All that so he doesn't have to answer for a terrorist attack.

HANNITY: All right, Dick, good to see you. We'll see you next Monday, thanks for being with us.

— Watch "Hannity" weeknights at 9 p.m. ET!

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