Senator Roland Burris (D-IL) delivers a health-care inspired version of “Twas the night before Christmas” on the Senate floor this morning.
"Although our work keeps us away from our family and friends for much of this holiday season, I see no reason why we can't share good cheers with one another right here in Washington," he said in introducing the poem. "So in the spirit of the season, Mr. president, I would like to share my own version of a classic holiday story with my good friends on both sides of the aisle."
Watch Burris deliver the poem at left, and read his effort below. It includes this line, in reference to the GOP: "We'll clog up the Senate, they cried with a grin/and in the midterm elections, we'll get voted in."
It was the night before Christmas, and all through the Senate
the right held up our health care bill, no matter what was in it.
The people had voted a mandated reform
but Republicans blew off the gathering storm.
"We'll clog up the Senate," they cried with a grin.
"and in the midterm elections, we'll get voted in."
they knew regular folks needed help right this second
but fund-raisers lobbyists and politics beckoned.
So try as they might Democrats could not win
because their majority was simply too thin
Then across every state there rose such a clatter,
the whole Senate rushed out to see what was the matter.
All sprang up from their desk and ran from the floor,
straight through the cloakroom and right out the door.
And in what in the world would be quite so raucous,
but a mandate for change from the Democratic caucus.
The president, the speaker, of course leader Reid
had answered the call in our hour of need.
More rapid than eagles, the provisions they came
and they whistled and shouted and called them by name:
better coverage, cost savings, a strong public plan
accountable options, we said "yes, we can."
No exclusions or changes for preexisting conditions.
let's pass a bill that restores competition.
The Democrats all came together to fight
for the American people that Christmas eve night.
And then in a twinkle, I heard under the dome
the roll call was closed, and it was time to go home.
Despite the obstructionist tactics of some,
the filibuster had broken, the people had won
And a good bill was ready for President Obama,
ready to sign and end health care drama.
Democrats explained as they drove out of sight,
better coverage for all, even our friends on the right.
And I say to all of my colleagues in this season, merry Christmas and a happy, happy new year.
UPDATE: Burris's spokeswoman, Audrey Till, told POLITICO that the senator's speechwriter, Riley Roberts, was the author of the holiday-inspired verse.
Can we keep him?