The health care reform battles of 2009 and much of 2010 were often fought behind closed doors, where Democratic leadership offered special legislative favors to secure votes in their party and political opponents were left out. Now that same practice is haunting the budget and debt ceiling fight, and it's Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that feels left out this time! The Hill reports:
[Reid] confronted White House budget director Jack Lew during a Thursday afternoon meeting about secret talks on a deficit-reduction deal between the president and Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio).
“I’m the Senate majority leader — why don’t I know about this deal?” Reid demanded as soon as the budget director walked into the historic Mansfield Room for a meeting with Senate Democrats, according to a lawmaker who witnessed the exchange.
Lew shot back: “If there’s a deal, then the president doesn’t know about it, the vice president doesn’t know about it and I don’t know about it.”