Hurt feelings and the health care summit 

Ain't nothing but a (Blair) house party...                   (nyt photo)

Really, members of Congress? Have you nothing better to do with six hours on Thursday? Beltway Confidential feels that although life is long (we are told) it's still not long enough to sit through six hours of government jawboning over health care reform. That said, we still plan to cover it (with bathroom and Blackberry breaks, as needed)

Anyway -- ABC News is reporting that President Obama for months had been telling Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine and Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon that they could come to the summit. Then, when the invites went out, there was nothing for either of them. Hurt feelings! Shades of second grade birthday party drams!

Belatedly, Obama asked them both to join the summit, after all. Snowe -- well versed, apparently, in precisely how rude after-the-fact invites are, said no thanks. Wyden, possibly more pragmatic than dignified, said he'd be there.

But OMG! That created an imbalance between Republicans and Democrats, with one extra of the latter. Anyone who's been to dancing school knows the importance of keeping it boy-girl, boy-girl. So the White House told Republicans to just pick someone, already -- and they chose  Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan, a staunch critic of allowing any kind of abortion funding in the health care bill. But whoops -- Stupak is a Democrat.

Sigh. The White House said whatever -- bring who you want.

Hope he doesn't eat all the cake and ice cream.

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Julie Mason

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