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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Saturday, December 19, 2009
It Finally Happened - Reid Moved to Force Vote on Government Take Over of Health Care
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) finally unveiled his manager’s amendment to the Democrats’ health care reform bill and announced that he believed he has 60 votes for cloture.
Reid's Health Care Manager's Amendment - Dems have it online here: http://democrats.senate.gov/reform/managers-amendment.pdf Once the reading is completed, Reid will likely file cloture on his manager’s amendment, the substitute amendment, and then the underlying bill. That would likely set up the first, and most important, cloture vote for 1 AM Monday.
After Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell forced a reading of the amendment, he said: "The history being made here is ignoring of the will of the American people. The history that is being made is that a bill sold as solving a major problem in our nation helps makes the problem worse. Because independent nonpartisan scorekeepers tell us that premiums, taxes, and overall health care spending will go up under this bill. If this were a good bill with bipartisan support, I assure you they would not be trying to pass this the weekend before Christmas and in the middle of the night. The next vote literally will be in the middle of the night, at 1:00 A.M. Monday morning.”
It’s not just the obvious attempt to sneak this bill by Americans while they’re focused on friends and family that’s outrageous. Reid’s introduction of his amendment sight unseen Saturday morning and plan to vote on it barely 40 hours later specifically violates a pledge from Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), Evan Bayh (D-IN), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Ben Nelson (D-NE), Mark Pryor (D-AR), and Jim Webb (D-VA). In an October letter, all eight senators had requested that “the legislation and its CBO scores” be posted online “72 hours before it is brought to a vote in the Senate” and the text of amendments be published before they are debated. More Info below.
The 2,733 PAGES of the bill itself still cuts $470 Billion from Medicare, raises taxes by $518 billion, and nearly doubles the Medicare payroll tax ($87 Billion). CBO writes, “Under the legislation, federal outlays for health care would increase during the 2010–2019 period, as would the federal budgetary commitment to health care.” So the bill still does not reduce costs, as Democrats claim it will. The deficit savings touted by Democrats, $132 billion over ten years, was spent in the month of October alone, when the budget deficit was $176 billion. It imposes massive burdens on states that are already struggling under the weight of the cost of Medicaid. At the same time, however, it gives special sweetheart deals to a select few states.
Supposedly it’s amendment #3276. Nelson’s Nebraska To Receive Extra Medicaid Funds Under Senate Bill . The manager's amendment goes a long way towards satisfying the demands of Democratic hold-out and all-important 60th vote Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE).
Nelson has recently complained that the proposed expansion of Medicaid to those earning below 133% of the Federal Poverty Line (FPL) would burden his state of Nebraska and suggested that states should be able to opt-in to the program. Under the current merged legislation (the version unveiled on November 18th), the federal government fully finances care for the expanded population for two years and increases its matching funds (known as FMAP) thereafter. Page 98 of the managers amendment specifically identifies Nebraska for higher federal matching funds, fully funding its expansion for an additional year:
-------------- Reid Amendment Violates Eight Dems’ Pledge - Lincoln Letter Said Legislation “Should Be Posted On A Public Website Prior To Beginning Debate,” “Available To The Public For 72 Hours” And Should Have “Complete CBO Scores”
Senators Blanche L. Lincoln, Evan Bayh, Mary L. Landrieu, Joseph I. Lieberman, Claire McCaskill, Ben Nelson, Mark L. Pryor, Jim Webb: “By publically posting the legislation and its CBO scores 72 hours before it is brought to a vote in the Senate and by publishing the text of amendments before they are debated, our constituents will have the opportunity to evaluate these policies and communicate their concerns or their message of support to their Members of Congress.” (Senators Blanche Lincoln, Evan Bayh, Mary Landrieu, Joseph Lieberman, Claire McCaskill, Ben Nelson, Mark Pryor, Jim Webb, Letter To Sen. Reid, 10/6/09)
-------------- Dems Said The Class Act “Ponzi Scheme” “Needs To Be Out Of The Bill,” And Voted To Strip It, But It Is Included In Final Health Care Bill - SENATE DEMOCRATS: CLASS Act “A Ponzi Scheme Of The First Order”
SEN. BEN NELSON (D-NE): “The CLASS Act, Which Is The Community Living Assistance Program That The CMS Actuary Said Will Be Financially Upside Down In A Very Short Period Of Time, That Needs To Be Out Of The Bill.” “Well, it has to make -- the Senate will have to make a lot of changes. The public option would have to be changed dramatically or dropped from the bill. The CLASS Act, which is the community living assistance program that the CMS actuary said will be financially upside down in a very short period of time, that needs to be out of the bill.” (Fox News’ “On The Record,” 12/1/09)
SEN. MAX BAUCUS (D-MT): “I Am No Fan Of The CLASS Act Myself.” “To be honest, I frankly would like to hear you talk about the CLASS Act because frankly I am no fan of the CLASS Act myself, so you can proceed.” (Sen. Baucus, Floor Remarks, 12/2/09)
SENATORS CONRAD, LIEBERMAN, LINCOLN, LANDRIEU, BAYH WARNER AND NELSON LETTER TO REID OPPOSING CLASS ACT: Group Of Moderate Senators Wrote To Harry Reid Today Asking Him Not To Include The CLASS Act, Which Would Create A Long-Term Insurance Program For The Disabled, In The Merged Bill. Sens. Conrad, Lieberman, Lincoln, Landrieu, Bayh, Warner And Ben Nelson Wrote That They Are Concerned The Provision Would Increase Long-Term Deficits.” (“Mods Say No To CLASS Act,” Politico, 10/28/09)
CBO: CLASS Act Will “Eventually Lead To Net Outlays When Benefits Exceed Premiums.” “As noted earlier, the CLASS program included in the bill would generate net receipts for the government in the initial years when total premiums would exceed total benefit payments, but it would eventually lead to net outlays when benefits exceed premiums. ... In the decade following 2029, the CLASS program would begin to increase budget deficits.” (Douglas Elmendorf, CBO Director, Letter To Rep. Rangel, P.13, 10/29/09)
WASHINGTON POST: CLASS Act “A New Gimmick… Designed To Pretend That Health Reform Is Fully Paid For” WASHINGTON POST: “…A New Gimmick Has Been Designed To Pretend That Health Reform Is Fully Paid For. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions adopted a measure, endorsed by the Obama administration, to have the government provide long-term care insurance in which workers would be automatically enrolled unless they opt out.” (“How Not To Fix Health Care,” The Washington Post, 7/10/09)
------------- Dem Falsely Says Republicans Authored Four Amendments To The Health Bill When Over 200 Have Been Filed And Blocked By The Majority
SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): “Four Amendments In 20 Days. The Combined Wisdom Of The Republican Senate Caucus Came Up With Four Amendments To This Bill Of 2,000 Pages In 20 Days And Six Different Motions To Send The Bill Back To Committee And Stop Talking About It.” (Sen. Durbin, Floor Remarks, 12/19/09)
Reid Seeks to Push Healthcare Bill Trough in The Dead of Night - Evilness Reigns in Washington D.C.
Bill Smith, Editor: Democrat Majority Lead By Harry Reid Is Planning 1:00AM Monday Vote On A 2,000 Page Health Care Bill That They Say Will Be Released Less Than 40 Hours Before. What happened to the promised 72 hrs to read the bill. Now There Will Be No Details On A Manager’s Amendment “Until Saturday Morning,” Which Will Then Be Voted On Monday At 1 A.M.That Could Come On Christmas Eve. Once Cloture Is Passed, Reid's Democrats Will Ram Through Government Healthcare With A Simple Majority Vote.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The Key Vote IS The Cloture Vote At 1 A.M., Not the Vote The Later Votes
Back on November 8, 2009, Dr. Adam Murdock, M.D. in an article titled "The End of America happens in the middle of the night" reflected: "While normal everyday oblivious Americans were preparing their beds to sleep Saturday night their elected officials quietly passed H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act. Indeed, the passage of this act deals one of the final death blows to the Constitution and with it our liberties. As I ponder upon this momentously horrid occurrence it is as if I have just woken up from a nightmare and been thrown directly into the plot of George Orwell’s 1984."
Again, we see the movement of evil to act in the middle of the night. All of our Senators should be ashamed of themselves. And this issue being forced by the Democrats over the will of the majority of the people demonstrates that the Republic is about to be sold out by their actions. While they may seek God's forgiveness for their deceitful actions to enslave Americans via actions behind closed doors and votes in the dark of night on unread bills, I have no forgiveness to offer them. They have held themselves above the Constitution that they swore to defend even against their own actions and those of their fellow elected officials. I do not pity their failure; but I do join with the majority of Americans in desiring their removal from office.
Comments by John Adams MMIV: Across the country, many Americans are surely curious as to why the Senate is in marathon sessions at Christmastime debating the health care bill. Democrats and others are eager to blame it on GOP “obstructionism,” but make no mistake, this is a course Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has chosen purposefully.
Reid is determined to jam his unpopular health care reform bill through the Senate while no one is watching, with votes in the dead of night, over the weekend, and days before Christmas. At a press conference this morning, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell elaborated, “As we have pointed out repeatedly, this massive piece of legislation that seeks to restructure one-sixth of our economy is being written behind closed doors without input from anyone in an effort to jam it past not only the Senate but the American people before Christmas. . . . Every single American will be affected by this, and no one would have had an opportunity to read it and to understand it.”
This is precisely why Senate Republicans, on behalf of the American people, will continue to prevent Democrats from jamming this bill through sight unseen. Sen. McConnell, acting in concert with a unified Republican conference, is using the tools available to him to slow the Democrats’ headlong rush to pass something. Among those has been forcing the reading of the 767 page Sanders amendment on Wednesday, voting to spend as much time on the Defense appropriations bill as possible, and forcing Democrats to spend the time called for under Senate rules to consider legislation.
The more time that the American people have to see what Democrats have already produced, the more they dislike it. Week after week, polls show that Americans oppose this approach to health care reform. The core of the bill we already have is over 2,000 pages in length, spends $2.5 trillion when it is fully implemented, includes half a trillion dollars in Medicare cuts, raises taxes on middle-class Americans, and does not control health care costs. No one has suggested that the new bill being written behind closed doors will change any of this. That may be why a number of Democrats are still undecided on supporting cloture on the health care bill. [Sam Adams MMIV is a pen name for an un-named beltway source.] Tags:government healthcare, Harry ReidTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tony Perkins, FRC Washington Update:: The Senate's "centrists" should savor their holiday on the Hill. For some of them, it may be their last. With the health care bill plowing through Congress faster than the Polar Express, angry Americans may decide for some "change" of their own next November. At the moment, Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is trying to beat the clock, scheduling votes at all hours of the day and night in hopes of forcing his four-reams of health care failure down the chimney before the big day. If the Majority Leader's calendar holds up, a vote on H.R. 3590 could happen on the night of Christmas Eve--even though the Senate still hasn't seen the latest version of the bill and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has yet to announce how much it will cost. There is more than a little irony that Congress will vote on the bill that funds and expands abortion to unprecedented levels on Christmas Eve.
Republicans are doing their best to eat up minutes by throwing some procedural curve balls. Earlier this week, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) forced the liberals' hand by asking them to read aloud a 767-page amendment. The Senate's clerks never finished the reading relay, because the Left surrendered three hours in and pulled the measure. "If Senator Reid won't slow down this debate, we will do it for him," said Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.). After the leadership pulled its prized public option, the country's liberal zealots may be willing to help.
After almost a full year of debate on the issue, Americans are unhappy. The extreme Left is unhappy. Conservatives are livid. At this point, they all agree on the solution to Reid's bill: kill it. That means identifying the Senate's 60th vote and stopping it. For now, the entire weight of this historic legislation falls on the shoulders of whoever breaks rank and votes with Sen. Reid. To be sure, it will hang around that leader's neck--be it Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, Blanche Lincoln, or Ben Nelson--like an electoral noose. Kimberley Strassel summed it up in an excellent Wall Street Journal op-ed, "Slowly... the Democratic health a genda is turning into a political suicide pact... So why the stubborn insistence on passing health reform? Think big. The liberal wing of the party... [is] focused beyond November 2010, to the long-term political prize. They want a health-care program that inevitably leads to a... permanent welfare state. Big government then becomes fact, and another Ronald Reagan becomes impossible. See Continental Europe." Unfortunately, rank-and-file Democrats can't see the forest for the Christmas trees. Why not help them? Call your senators over the weekend at 202-224-3121 and urge them to kill this bill. Tags:Christmas, FRC, government healthcare, Harry Reid, Tony PerkinsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
This Week's Public Opinion Polls: NO to OBAMACARE, REIDCARE & PELOSICARE
Just Like Last Week, This Week Every Poll Shows Americans Overwhelmingly Oppose The Democrats’ Health Care Bill
NBC NEWS-WALL STREET JOURNAL POLL:“Just 32 Percent Say It's A Good Idea, Versus 47 Percent Who Say It's A Bad Idea.” “As the Senate sprints to pass a health-care bill by Christmas, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds that those believing President Obama's health-reform plan is a good idea has sunk to its lowest level. Just 32 percent say it's a good idea, versus 47 percent who say it's a bad idea.” (“NBC Poll: Public Sours On Health Reform,” MSNBC’s “First Read,”, 12/16/09)
RASMUSSEN:“Fifty-Six Percent (56%) Of U.S. Voters Now Oppose The Health Care Plan Proposed By President Obama And Congressional Democrats. That’s the highest level of opposition found - reached three times before - in six months of polling. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 40% of voters favor the health care plan. Perhaps more significantly, 46% now Strongly Oppose the plan, compared to 19% who Strongly Favor it.” (“Health Care Reform,” Rasmussen Reports, 12/14/09)Tags:ABC, Gallup Poll, government healthcare, NBC, polls, Rasmussen Poll, Washington Post, WSJTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Is The First Lady The ‘Eva Peron’ Of The Obama Administration?
TVC, December 17, 2009 – Washington Examiner investigate journalist Byron York is reporting on a congressional investigation involving First Lady Michelle Obama and her role in the firing of Inspector General Gerald Walpin.
Walpin had been fired on June 10, 2009 for his role in the investigation of the misuse of AmeriCorps funds by the Obama friend, Kevin Johnson, the mayor of Sacramento, California. Walpin’s firing was illegal. Law requires that the President notify Congress 30 days before firing an Inspector General of the Corporation for National and Community Service and give reasons why. Walpin’s character was smeared by Obama Administration officials. The White House claims Walpin was fired because he was “confused” and was concerned about his capacity to serve in the position. Glenn Beck interviewed Walpin to find out if he were truly “confused” or just doing his job to effectively expose government fraud.
Republican investigators have discovered that Alan Solomont, former chairman of the Corporation for National and Community Service (which oversees AmeriCorps) had denied meeting with Jackie Norris, First Lady Obama’s former chief of staff.
However, recently released visitor logs to the White House reveal that Solmont met with Norris on June 9 – just a day before Walpin was fired. Either he lied to investigators or he forgot meeting with Norris. After being shown the logs, Solomont then explained that he had met with Norris to discuss Corporation business, but did not discuss Walpin.
York reports that First Lady Obama had taken a special interest in playing a central role in the national service agenda and that she was going to appoint the Corporation’s new Chief Executive Officer. On June 4, Jackie Norris left First Lady Obama’s office to work as a senior advisor at the Corporation.
Republican investigators were interested in learning that Solomont, who had first denied meeting with Norris, had visited the White House 17 times and met with Norris on three of those occasions. The investigators note that on June 3, Solomont had sent an email to a White House lawyer to discuss who might replace Walpin. Clearly, he was involved in some sort of planning to oust Walpin.
Solomont has since been picked by President Obama to become Ambassador to Spain. His nomination had a hold placed on it by Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA), but Grassley has since removed the hold. Another Senator has put a hold on Solomont’s nomination until more facts can be discovered about his role – and the First Lady’s – in the illegal firing of Walpin.
According to Grassley, “I remain concerned about the accuracy and completeness of Mr. Solomont’s answers to questions during both his July 15 and December 8, 2009 interviews.”
Jackie Norris and First Lady Michelle Obama should be compelled to testify under oath about what role each of them might have played in illegally ousting Gerald Walpin from his position as Inspector General.
by Bob Unruh, World Net Daily — Demand for the removal of homosexual advocate Kevin Jennings from his position as chief of the Department of Education's Office of Safe Schools is growing, with the Washington Post saying the appointment was wrong and thousands joining a petition.
Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, also has introduced a resolution to Congress that Jennings be removed. "Be it resolved, that the House of Representatives (1) considers the behavior of a 'Safe Schools Czar' promoting sexual relationships between adults and children reprehensible; (2) supports the belief that any and all who occupy the position of 'Safe Schools Czar' should not promote criminal behavior; and (3) calls on the president and the secretary of education to find an immediate replacement for Kevin Jennings."
The Times said the issue isn't about homosexual acts but about "promoting sex between children and adults." "It's time for President Obama to make clear that abetting such illegal perversion has no place in his administration," the newspaper said. Jennings has admitted that while he was a teacher, he once gave a reportedly underage student advice to use a condom when the student said he had been seeking sexual encounters in public restrooms.
Continued the newspaper, "The evidence suggesting he is unfit to serve as a senior presidential appointee is startling and plentiful. It was revealed this week that Mr. Jennings was involved in promoting a reading list for children 13 years old or older that made the most explicit sex between children and adults seem normal and acceptable. This brought up anew Mr. Jennings' past controversies, such as his seeming encouragement of sex between one of his high school students and a much older man as well as his praise for Harry Hay, a notorious supporter of the North American Man Boy Love Association."
Further, and alarming, the editorial said, were "shocking new revelations … of tape recordings from a young conference involving 14-year-old students. … The conference session appear[ed] to have had less to do with promoting tolerance and more to do with teaching children how to engage in sex." . . .
Robert Knight, a senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union, cited the reaction from homosexual advocates as a key reason to pursue further questions. . . . Knight questioned how anyone could defend "the most shocking evidence" in the case, a booklet made available at an April 30, 2005, GLSEN-sponsored seminar at Brookline High School, in Brookline, Mass., title "The Little Black Book: V 2.0 Queer in the 21st Century." Knight said the pamphlet is "packed with pornographic pictures, obscenities and advice to kids on how to engage in perverse and dangerous behaviors using all sorts of bodily functions. Included is a helpful list of the gay bars in Boston where underage teens can become prey for boozed-up, over-21 patrons. The bars' special attractions are listed, including such amenities as strippers and video porn."
. . . A teacher who attended the seminar also has confirmed in a recorded interview withJim Hoft of the Gateway Pundit blog that Jennings was the chief of the event. The teacher insisted on anonymity in her interview with Hoft out of concern for her own safety and that of her family. She addressed the focus of seminars at the conference that, according to reports, provided young children instructions on how to engage in homosexual acts. The teacher, identified only at MT, said, "This whole conference was his [Kevin Jennings'] dream and his mindset. This was his vision from the very beginning."
Brian Camenker and Amy Contrada at Mass Resistance in Massachusetts also have posted online audio recordings from the seminar, documenting discussions such as whether to "spit or swallow" during oral sex and how to accomplish "fisting." Of course Jennings and the Massachusetts Department of Education knew beforehand what the 'sexuality educators' would discuss with children at the 'fisting' workshop," Mass Resistance said in a recent report. "The instructor Margot Abels said so herself." The state instruction program, labeled "Safe Schools for Gay and Lesbian Students," was held April 18, 2000. . . .
Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League> wrote, "On September 23, I wrote a news release on the curious moral credentials of Kevin Jennings to be President Obama's Safe Schools Czar: a former drug user and irresponsible teen counselor, he is also a Christian basher. "What was not known at the time is that he is also a proud member of Act Up, the homosexual urban terrorist group that broke into St. Patrick's Cathedral (in New York City) in 1989 and disrupted Mass; the Eucharist was desecrated and obscene depictions of Cardinal O'Connor were posted," he continued. . . . (more)
------------- Obama's safe schools czar tied to lewd readings for 7th graders Making schools safe for exploitation Tags:child abuse, child sex, Czar, DHS, Kevin Jennings, Obama administrationTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
A Return to Slavery One Progressive Step at a Time
by Dave Cribbin, Syndicated writer for Americans for Limited Government: Let’s just call it what it is, as one of my favorite economists Walter E. Williams writes in a recent Town Hall column: “There is absolutely no moral case, much less constitutional case, for Congress forcibly using one American to serve the purposes of another American, a practice that differs only in degree from slavery, which we all should find morally offensive.”
If you strip the health-care debate of it’s sugar coated political buzz words such as mandate and public option, aren’t we really talking about just another case where the government has decided to force you to labor for the benefit of someone else? At the rate we are going, how long will it be before you’ll be spending more of your time working for others rather than yourself. Isn’t that so very altruistic of you!
If the Health Care Police (HCP), I assume they would be the ones in charge of enforcing the governments health care mandate, knocked on your door every other Monday morning and forced your college educated 22 year old daughter to work all day picking up trash on the side of the highway you’d be horrified. You’d want some answers! What dastardly criminal act could she have committed to deserve such a punishment, keeping her out of work all day and thereby depriving her of 10% of her income?
They don’t do that in America, you say. Well, not quite yet anyway, but they will soon if the Democrats have their way with health care. She will be forced by the government to spend an equivalent amount of her earnings to purchase something she had decided not to. Is this not also a practice that differs only in degrees?
As a parent, wouldn’t you want to talk to the prosecutor to know what crime your daughter had committed that merited a fine that was upwards of 10% of her income? Shouldn’t there be some kind of a trial to find her guilty before punishment is meted out, even if it is only a show trial like the one KSM is entitled to? Won’t you be mortified to learn she has committed the most heinous of acts imaginable in our new Progressive Society? That’s right she is guilty of working for an employer who does not provide health insurance, and has failed to purchase a government approved insurance policy on her own. Oh, the shame of it!
Your representatives in Congress are spinning a yarn that goes like this: legions of hospitalized young adults without medical insurance are the cause of the explosion in health insurance premiums. This in an attempt to justify a morally bankrupt and unconstitutional taking of private property. Their remedy? Mandate (a pretty word that means to force) that all citizens must buy health insurance. That’s what they would like you to believe, but that is not what the facts tell us.
The fact is that they are bullying healthy young people into to subsidizing health care premiums for those in poor health who have medical insurance, those with preexisting conditions who have been denied health insurance coverage and those who are not financially able to purchase health insurance. The Progressive bullies in Congress always pick on the politically weak in society, in this case it happens to be young people, it’s not like they are reliable voters anyway, and their perennial favorites, “The Rich” who will pay the freight to provide an insurance subsidy for the politically favored classes.
Will health insurance reform really be the rallying cry Progressives use to justify re-instituting a modern day version of Slavery in America?Tags:ALG News, government healthcare, progressives, slaveryTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Arkansas Governor: U.S. Senate Health Care Could Impact State Budget by $100 Million
From The Tolbert Report: Gov. Mike Beebe’s spokesman Matt DeCample tells the Tolbert Report this morning that their office still has concerns over the cost of the health care reform proposal. In November, Gov. Beebe expressed “big concerns” over the impact of the house version of the health care proposal which he estimated could be $205 million for the state of Arkansas.
DeCample this morning tells me that the numbers they are seeing for the Senate proposal is about half this amount, right around the $100 million mark. He says that the governor is keeping his eye on this but they realize that the final bill coming out of conference committee will be the one to watch.
Also this morning, Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who previously has supported health care reform, said on Good Morning America that he could not support the current proposal as it could have a $3 billion negative impact of his state budget in California.
I think this will be one to watch closely. Sen. Lincoln will have a difficult time voting to advance any health care bill that does not have the support of Gov. Beebe who continues to ride approval ratings around 43 points higher than her own.
[Revisit The Tolbert Report for Updates on impact on Arkansas!] Tags:Arkansas, health care, Mike Beebe, US SenateTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
White House Threatens to Close Offutt Air Force Base If Nelson Doesn’t Vote for Obamacare
by stoptheaclu on Free Republic: Quite an explosive leak! I wonder how this will affect things? It is certainly a thuggish and dangerous thing for Obama to play with National Security over this craptacular idea of socialized medicine. Quite a desperate move.
According to a Senate aide, the White House is now threatening to put Nebraska's Offutt Air Force Base on the BRAC list if [Ben] Nelson _D-NE] doesn't fall into line. Offutt Air Force Base employs some 10,000 military and federal employees in Southeastern Nebraska. As our source put it, this is a "naked effort by Rahm Emanuel and the White House to extort Nelson's vote." They are "threatening to close a base vital to national security for what?" asked the Senate staffer.
Indeed, Offutt is the headquarters for US Strategic Command, the successor to Strategic Air Command, and not by accident. STRATCOM was located in the middle of the country for strategic reasons. Its closure would be a massive blow to the economy of the state of Nebraska, but it would also be another example of this administration playing politics with our national security.
So much for the idea of Obama trying to save jobs and improve the economy!
Without Nelson's vote, since all Republicans are still in line to oppose this, Reid is still left with 59 votes. So, some arm twisting is taking place. Nelson doesn't want this bill to fund abortions so he is now being threatened, and national security along with him. How shameful this would be if Democrats felt shame.
Ed Morrissey: "The Obama administration has little left to use for leverage. Why not national security? After all, if we're going to bring terrorists into Illinois, what does it matter if we put the US Strategic Command on wheels for a few years?"
What a nightmare! Dakota Voice reports: In the wake of the firestorm created by this allegation, 20 senators including Senator John Thune (R-SD) are calling for a probe into the allegations.
From the Omaha World Herald: Nebraska’s Sen. Mike Johanns and 19 other Republican senators Wednesday called for a hearing into reports that the Obama administration used the future of Offutt Air Force Base as bargaining chip in the health care debate. See also:20 senators demand probe Tags:Ben Nelson, Chicago politics, government healthcare, Nebraska, Obama administration, Offutt AFB, Rahm EmanuelTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today in Washington D. C. - Dec 17, 2009 - Home in Recess - Senate in Confusion
The House ended their session yesterday and is on Christmas break. The Washington Post identified that "The House pushed through a last-minute flurry of legislation Wednesday, including a $636 billion Pentagon funding bill, a short-term rise in the nation's debt limit, and an extension of unemployment and health benefits for millions of jobless Americans. But Democrats put off until next year some of the thorniest political issues facing the chamber. While the House passed on party lines a largely symbolic $150 billion job-creation bill, that legislation has virtually no chance of seeing action in the Senate this year"
Although several Senators are in Copenhagen, the Senate reconvened and resumed consideration of the House amendment to H.R. 3326, the fiscal year 2010 Defense appropriations bill. The $636 billion bill includes $128 billion for war operations and a 3.4% military pay increase. Also included are extensions through February of COBRA subsidies, unemployment benefits, and the PATRIOT ACT.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid filed cloture on the Defense bill yesterday, and a cloture vote is expected Friday night, with final passage possible on Saturday. At that point, it’s expected the Senate will return to the Reid substitute amendment to H.R. 3590, the vehicle for Democrats’ health care reform bill. Sen. Harry Reid has indicated he will keep the Senate in session and may force the Senate vote on Christmas. Reid is really proving to be a heathen. There is no reason for this except fear on his part. The house is already in recess until the new year.
In a shame event by the Democrats yesterday, the Democrats broke the Senate rules to escape a forced reading of the 767-page Sanders amendment offering a single-payer health care system, 56 Democrats voted to table the motion from Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and John Thune (R-SD) to send the bill back to committee to delay the effective date of tax increases in the bill until the benefits begin.
As Democrats and the press struggle to create an aura of inevitability around the eventual passage of Senate Democrats’ health care reform bill, they seem to be missing two key ingredients: a bill and 60 certain votes.
The inevitability narrative shines through in the Los Angeles Timestoday: “New obstacles slowed Senate action on the healthcare bill Wednesday, as the hunt for supporters narrowed to a lone Democrat -- Ben Nelson of Nebraska -- and Republican delaying tactics brought debate to a temporary standstill. But Democratic leaders made progress toward bringing their party in line and remained hopeful that they would pass the bill through the Senate by Christmas -- just barely.” And Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said on the floor this morning, “We’re going to finish this health care bill before we leave here for the holidays.”
Yet, there remains no new bill to finish work on. This whole time, the Senate has been debating and amending the bill Reid produced in November, not whatever new deal he eventually comes up with. As Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said earlier today, “[T]hey want us to vote on a bill that no one outside the Majority Leader’s conference room has even seen. That’s right. The final bill we’ll vote on isn’t even the one we’ve had on the floor. It’s the deal Democrat leaders have been trying to work out in private. That’s what they intend to bring to the floor and force a vote on before Christmas. So this entire process is essentially a charade.”
But Democrats are also in the dark. Majority Whip Dick Durbin said recently, “I would say to the senator from Arizona, that I’m in the dark almost as much as he is. And I’m in the leadership.” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT), one of the managers of the health bill, said, “I have not seen it myself.” And no less than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said to reporters just yesterday, “I haven’t seen the Senate bill. Have you? Nobody has seen it.”
The Democrats don't seem to have assurance of 60 votes. Tthere are a number who have not committed to vote for a final health care bill. Sen. Jim Webb wrote in an op-ed this week, “I have yet to decide whether i will support final passage of the bill.” Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) said she needs to see a CBO score first. However, Lincoln also said people could be forced to buy health insurance or to pay a fine. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) said she needs to know that the bill will save more money for the government than it spends (which the current version does not). More liberal senators have also been coy about whether they will support the bill. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) said, “I am not making a judgment until I see the CBO numbers and that’s only the beginning.” Sen. Roland Burris (D-IL) gave a noncommittal speech on the Senate floor on Monday. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was a bit more blunt, though, telling Fox Business’ Neil Cavuto yesterday, “As of this point I am not voting for the bill.”
For a bill that is supposedly on track to inexorable passage, Democrats still don’t appear to have 60 votes secured, and incredibly, they have no legislative language yet. Telling ordinary Americans outside of Washington, D.C. that the Senate is guaranteed to pass a bill that does not yet exist would certainly generate looks of incredulity. Skepticism is warranted here. Tags:Government-Run Health Care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
"The most recent Climategate email is more than ten years old!" FALSE
"The Polar Ice Cap will be completely ice-free in five years!" FALSE
"The interior of the earth is several million degrees!" FALSE
" . . . that meltdown is NOT a hoax." Tags:Al Gore, climate change, climategate, Energy Crisis, fraud, global warming, political cartoon, William WarrenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Sen. Lincoln: Congress Can Force Americans to Buy Health Insurance Because Constitution ‘Charges Congress With the Health’ of the People
Update: Doyle Webb, RPA Chairman issued the following statement today: “Two in three Arkansans oppose the health care scheme Blanche Lincoln supports. You don’t have to be a Rhodes Scholar to do the math that these numbers point to one thing, a defeat in 2010 for Blanche Lincoln. Arkansans want their elected officials to focus on jobs and the economy, not adding $1 trillion more dollars to our massive debt and mortgaging their grandchildren’s future. Blanche Lincoln needs to come out of her house in Northern Virginia and answer to the people of Arkansas, not Harry Reid and the Democrats.”
----------------- Bill Smith, Editor: What U.S. Constitution Sen Blanche Lincoln is reading? No citizen has to pay any fee or to give any tribute to be a U.S. citizen. Wow - Lincoln advocates for the mother of all poll taxes to be a citizen of the U.S. I guess it is really true, you can take the girl of the plantation, but you can't take the plantation mentality out of the girl. Lincoln has really embarrassed Arkansans. She is so desperate to gain the favor of the liberal elites that she is abandoning her constituents. This is not a gaffe, it is a definitive identification of her personal beliefs.
CNS News Reports: Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) told CNSNews.com that Congress has the authority to force individual Americans to buy health insurance because the U.S. Constitution “charges Congress with the health and well-being of the people.”
The words “health” and “well-being” do not appear anywhere in the Constitution.
The Congressional Budget Office has determined that in the entire history of the United States the federal government has never mandated that Americans buy any good or service. Both the House and Senate health care bills, however, include provisions that require all legal residents of the U.S. to purchase health insurance, a provision whose constitutionality has been questioned by, among others, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R.-Utah), the former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
At a press conference on Capitol Hill, CNSNews.com asked Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and Blanche Lincoln the following question: “What part of the Constitution do you think gives Congress the authority to mandate that individuals have to purchase health insurance?”
Lincoln did not answer the question during the press conference but spoke to CNSNews.com in the Dirksen Senate Office Building immediately afterward. CNSNews.com asked her there: ‘You didn’t respond to my constitutionality question during the press conference, and what was your reaction to, your answer to the question?”
“Well, I just think the Constitution charges Congress with the health and well-being of the people,” Lincoln said.
CNSNews.com then asked the Senator: “So, what area though? You’re saying the health and well-being. What area, though, does that fall under?”
“The health and well-being of the people of the country,” she replied.
During the press conference, Landrieu told CNSNews.com she would let “constitutional lawyers on our staff” answer the question of where the Constitution authorizes Congress to mandate that individuals buy health insurance. . . .
As a followup to the interview in the Dirkson Building, CNSNews.com asked Sen. Lincoln’s press secretary specifically which Article and Section of the Constitution the senator was referring to when she said the Constitution charged Congress with the health and well-being of the people. The press secretary did not respond by deadline.
The words “health” and “well-being” do not appear anywhere in the Constitution. The closest approximations to these words come in the Preamble, which includes the phrase “promote the general welfare,” and Article 1, Section 8, which includes the phrase “provide for the common Defence and General Welfare.” As per the CBO's historical analysis, neither of these phrases has ever been used to justify Congress forcing individual Americans to purchase something. [Full Story included interview and comments by Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-LA)] Tags:Arkansas, Blanche Lincoln, CNS, increased taxes, Mary Landrieu, US ConstitutionTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Another Democrats Announces Retirement - many Blue Dogs Tired
The Washington Post - House Democrats got a jolt Monday when a fourth lawmaker in a matter of weeks announced his retirement, leaving party officials and strategists fearful that they represent the leading edge of a wave of departures that could leave the Democrats vulnerable to significant losses in the 2010 midterm elections.
The most recent retirement came when Rep. Bart Gordon (Tenn.) [Blue Dog] decided not to seek a 14th term. . . . insiders acknowledged that he was swayed by the prospect of a highly competitive contest next November.
Gordon joins Reps. Dennis Moore (Kan.) [Blue Dog], John Tanner (Tenn.) [Blue Dog] and Brian Baird (Wash.) as Democratic members in swing districts who have announced their retirements in the past two weeks. . . . Privately, Democratic strategists were more pessimistic about the potential implications of Gordon's announcement. "Until this point, this was manageable and reasonable," said one strategist, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to offer a candid assessment. "This is serious." The national political environment has shifted significantly since President Obama was elected 13 months ago. Republican are now unified in opposition to the administration's policies . . .
Among the names mentioned as potential retirements if the political environment does not improve are Rep. John M. Spratt Jr. (S.C.), Vic Snyder and Marion Berry (Ark.) [Blue Dog], and Rep. Chet Edwards (Tex.).
"Democrats are beginning to see the writing on the wall, and instead of choosing to fight in a difficult political environment, they are taking a pass and opting for retirement," said Pete Sessions (Tex.), chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee. . . . [Full Article]Tags:2010 Elections, Blue Dogs, retirement, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Letter from Doyle Webb, Chairman, Republican Party of Arkansas
As the debate over President Obama’s healthcare scheme rages on, I’m asking for your help.
Blanche Lincoln will be a deciding vote on whether our country is saddled with another trillion dollars of debt and we need to make our voices heard.
Media reports indicate Sen. Ben Nelson (NE) is the only undecided vote. The thing is Blanche Lincoln has been silent on how she’s going to vote. Don’t you think as a fellow Arkansan you deserve to know how your elected officials are going to vote?
Call Blanche Lincoln today and tell her to vote no on the healthcare scheme and ask her office how she intends to vote.
Don’t delay! Harry Reid and the Democrat leadership want to ram this bill down our throats before Christmas. Call Senator Lincoln today.
Arkansas Republican Party Chairman
Contact Senator Lincolns Offices:
Washington D.C. Office
Little Rock Office
Phone: (501) 375-2993
Phone: (870) 910-6896
Phone: (479) 251-1224
Phone: (870) 774-3106
Tags:Blanche Lincoln, Doyle Webb, government healthcare, Republican Party of Arkansas, RPATo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Michelle Malkin: President Obama's hometown cronies lost their bid to bring the 2016 Olympic Games to the Windy City. But this week they got a consolation prize: the Gitmolympics. On Tuesday, the White House went public with its official plans to purchase the Thomson Correctional Facility from financially strapped Illinois to house Guantanamo Bay detainees. The War on Terror meets the Chicago Way.
Political boosters of the Illinois budget bailout masquerading as a national security program can't wait to roll out the jihadi welcome mat. Unions representing federal prison workers also cheered the move. Leading the lobbying delegation for the new Gitmo-in-the-heartland located a few hours west of Chicago: Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, last seen on the international stage in 2005 likening American interrogators and military staff at Guantanamo Bay to Nazis, Soviet gulag operators and genocidal maniac Pol Pot.
And co-chairing the bid to bring suspected jihadis to American soil: beleaguered Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn (D), who is salivating at the prospect of an estimated $1 billion injection into the local economy over four years. (Never mind that the jobs predictions from the Council of Economic Advisers use the same fuzzy math methods that gave us bogus porkulus numbers.)
Sensibly, the people of Illinois who will have to live with this raw deal aren't waving their pompoms. A Rasmussen poll shows that 51% of voters in the state oppose the transfer of suspected terrorists from the Cuban detention facility to their backyard -- including 70% of Republicans, 37% of Democrats and 57% of independents. Left-wing advocates of closing Gitmo accuse these Americans of "NIMBYism" and groundless fear. But can you blame anyone who watched the Crashergate debacle at the White House or the Scare Force One debacle in New York City for choking on disbelief when Team Obama promises airtight safety, security and competence?
Moreover, Illinois is already suffering its own severe prison-overcrowding crisis -- which Quinn has alleviated by secretly releasing more than 850 inmates, including violent offenders, since September, according to the Associated Press. GOP gubernatorial candidate Dan Proft pointed out that "the state's 28 current prisons are 32% over capacity. Why not alleviate the overcrowding and bring the Thomson prison online" for existing criminals instead of importing them from abroad? Kirk Dillard, another Republican candidate, blasted Quinn's fiscal desperation: "I think al-Qaida needs to stay in Cuba. It shows how pathetic the state of Illinois' finances are, where we have to stand with our hat in hand and have the federal government give us money to open a penitentiary that the Democrats have let sit vacant for years." . . . [Read More] Tags:GITMO, Illinois, Michele BachmannTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Ken Blackwell, Contributing Author: President Barack Obama has completed his months-long “deliberations” over his latest Afghanistan policy. He got more applause from Republicans than from Democrats after his long-running Hamlet act. The Prince of Denmark was famous for his indecision: “To be or not to be…”
Obama was much more decisive about climate change, however. He promised hope and change, but when it comes to climate change, we have to hope we can arrest the lethal cycles of mercury readings up and down. “Climate change” is now the new buzzword. It used to be “global warming.” All warming all the time. But when earth’s atmosphere stubbornly declined to heat up, the warm-mongers had to find a new term. So now it’s climate change. You really can’t miss with that one. For sure, the climate will be changing somewhere. Now, references to global warming tend to be buried in the second paragraphs, or better yet, abbreviated as AGW. That’s short for anthropogenic global warming. AGW is also short for “it’s your fault.”
That’s because Mr. Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency recently declared that carbon dioxide is a toxic chemical and it does threaten the planet. Here’s another hint: whenever you hear “planet,” reach for your wallet. They’re coming after you. We used to talk about the world and the earth, as in “for God so loved the world,” and, especially at Christmas time, “peace on earth, good will to men.” But singling out our own planet would be not racist, or sexist, or “speciesist,” but impermissibly earth-centric. Why, if you care about earth first, you’ll be called a “denier” as quick as you can say Copernicus.
Fred Thompson last year did a radio commentary on the receding of the polar ice caps. He didn’t invoke the horrid specter of polar bears drowning, or penguins molting. Thompson simply asked about a NASA study that said the polar ice caps are receding—on Mars. If Martian ice caps are receding, does that call into question AGW? Does it mean that climate change on earth might be a result of solar activity?
We don’t know. It may mean nothing of the kind. But the release of hacked emails from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit shows a mindset among the climate scientists that should give us all a chill. Corresponding with Penn State researchers, the East Anglians fed all their data to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN’s high commission of environmental pooh-bahs.
Well, maybe not all their data. We may not have the baseline data on temperatures, but we do have the data that has been massaged, manipulated, and worked over by East Anglians applying serious scientific methods they refer to in their emails as “tricks,” as ways to “hide the decline.” These East Anglians also tell us they know how to eject from their “community” any doubters, any scientists who are not playing ball. If these skeptics get their articles published in “peer-reviewed” journals, then we just blackball the journal. That was easy.
Thomas Jefferson was our first Democratic President. Our first man of science in the White House, Jefferson was also a founder of the American Philosophical Society. After his Presidency, he founded the University of Virginia. Mr. Jefferson described his university. “Here we are not afraid to follow truth, wherever it may lead, or to tolerate error so long as reason is left free to combat it.” That open-mindedness is alien to the East Anglians. Also alien to them is the idea of a deity. Jefferson took many of his philosophical ideas from the French Enlightenment, but he rejected their atheism. You could tell the world was created, Jefferson said; it was obvious from the “intelligence in the design.”
To the East Anglians and all those leaders who are gathering in Copenhagen, the underlying assumption is that we’ve got the whole world in our hands—sorry, planet-- that we are the ones heating its atmosphere, or at least changing it, and that we are the ones who can and must stop what we are doing. Any resistance to their plans for global governance must be crushed—just as you run neo-Nazis out of the public square.
The East Anglians would also be appalled by Mr. Jefferson’s First Inaugural Address. He concluded with a prayer: “May that Infinite Power which rules the destinies of the universe lead our councils to what is best, and give them a favorable issue for your peace and prosperity.” To acknowledge that there is a God above us who has infinite power, who rules the destinies of the universe, who leads in our councils, is something you will never see in a Copenhagen summit. It’s why I think there’s something rotten in Denmark.
----------------- Mr. Ken Blackwell is a conservative family values advocate. He submitted this article to the ARRA News Service Editor which also appears in his The Patriot Post. Blackwell is a former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission and is a senior fellow at the Family Research Council and American Civil Rights Union. Tags:Barack Obama, Denmark, Ken BlackwellTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today, on the Senate floor, Senator (Dr.) Tom Coburn (R-OK) objected to dispensing the reading of a Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)amendment on single payer health care. The clerk of the Senate will have to read the entire amendment, which is several hundred pages. Senate Republicans are united and committed to stopping this 2000 page, $2.5 trillion government takeover of health care from becoming law.
The clerk of the Senate will have to read the entire amendment, which is 767 pages. This was a strategic decision discussed in the Leader’s office and with Sen. Coburn for quite some time. The conference is united behind this decision to read the amendment. Senate Republicans are united and committed to stopping this 2000 page, $2.5 trillion government takeover of health care from becoming law.
As a result of Coburn's efforts, after the reading had begun, Sander's withdrew his amendment. Interesting, didn't he want everyone to know what was in his amendment? It appears this was also a violation of the Senate rules. Philip Klein reports:
The Senate Republican leadership believes that the parlimentarian allowed Democrats to violate the rules of the Senate by allowing Sen. Bernie Sanders to cut off the reading of his single-payer proposal.
When an amendment is introduced, it has to be read on the Senate floor unless the rest of the Senate agrees to cut off the reading, and typically, the requirement is waived through "unanimous consent." Yet today, Sen. Tom Coburn insisted that Sanders' 767 page bill be read on the Senate floor, which would have taken more than 12 hours.
But about three hours into the reading, Sanders withdrew his amendment, and this stopped the reading of the bill. "In allowing Sanders to do that, it appears the parliamentarian has broken the standing rules of the Senate," a Republican aide emails. "We're looking into the implications of this and working on where to go from here."
Here is the relevant part of Riddick's Senate Procedure, which the GOP believes Democrats have violated, emphasis was in the email:
“Reading: Under Rule XV, paragraph 1, and Senate precedents, an amendment shall be read by the Clerk before it is up for consideration or before the same shall be debated unless a request to waive the reading is granted; in practice that includes an ordinary amendment or an amendment in the nature of a substitute, the reading of which may not be dispensed with except by unanimous consent, and if the request is denied the amendment must be read and further interruptions are not in order; interruptions of the reading of an amendment that has been proposed are not in order, even for the purpose of proposing a substitute amendment to a committee amendment which is being read. When an amendment is offered the regular order is its reading, and unanimous consent is required to call off the reading.”(Riddick’s Senate Procedure, P.43-44)
"It looks like there’s nothing the Democrats aren’t prepared to do to jam this unpopular health care bill down the throats of the American public," the aide writes.
Thank you Dr. Coburn! We are cheering you on. As a medical doctor, Colburn is standing for all of us! Next, it is time to read on the Senate floor the entire Reid bill which has been developed "behind closed doors." Tags:Bernie Sanders, Single payer system, Tom Colburn, US SenateTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Fact Checking Claims That The Dem Bill Will, “Reduce The Costs Of Health Care,” “Families Will Save On Their Premiums,” “Businesses … Will Save,” And It Will “Strengthen Medicare”
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “We Agree On Reforms That Will Finally Reduce The Costs Of Health Care. Families Will Save On Their Premiums. Businesses That Will See Their Costs Rise If We Do Nothing Will Save Money Now And In The Future. This Plan Will Strengthen Medicare And Extend The Life Of That Program.” (President Obama, Remarks, 12/15/09)
FACT CHECK: “REDUCE THE COSTS OF HEALTH CARE” Health Care Costs Increase
CMS: “This Bill Would Increase [Health Expenditures] By An Estimated Total Of $234 Billion”
CMS: “…We Estimate That Total National Health Expenditures Under This Bill Would Increase By An Estimated Total Of $234 Billion (0.7 Percent) During Calendar Years 2010-2019…”(“Estimated Financial Effects Of The ‘Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act Of 2009,’ As Proposed By The Senate Majority Leader On November 18, 2009,” Centers For Medicare & Medicaid Services, P.4, 12/10/09)
CBO: SENATE BILL INCREASES HEALTH CARE COSTS
CBO: “Under The Legislation, Federal Outlays For Health Care Would Increase During The 2010–2019 Period, As Would The Federal Budgetary Commitment To Health Care. The net increase in that commitment would be about $160 billion over 10 years, driven primarily by the $848 billion gross cost of the coverage expansions (including increases in both outlays and tax credits).” (CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Sen. Harry Reid, 11/18/09, P. 16)
FACT CHECK: “FAMILIES WILL SAVE ON THEIR PREMIUMS” Premiums Increase
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT): “Can I Sit Up Here Or Stand Here With A Straight Face And Say, We Have Got Strong Cost-Containment Provisions In This Legislation? That If You're An Ordinary Person Who Has Employer-Based Health Care, That Your Premiums Are Not Going To Go Up In The Next Eight Years Based On What’s In This Bill? I Can't Say That. It’s Just Not Accurate.” (Sen. Bernie Sanders, Floor Remarks, 12/14/09)
SEN. MAX BAUCUS (D-MT): “So It Is True That Some Persons In The So-Called Nongroup Market In The Year 2016, Would Find Their Premiums Would Go Up Without Subsidies. And I Think That Figure Nets Out To About 7%.”(Sen. Baucus, Floor Remarks, 12/7/09)
CBO:“Average Premiums Per Policy In The Nongroup Market In 2016 Would Be Roughly $5,800 For Single Policies And $15,200 For Family Policies Under The Proposal, Compared With Roughly $5,500 For Single Policies And $13,100 For Family Policies Under Current Law.The Weighted Average Of The Differences In Those Amounts Equals The Change Of 10 Percent To 13 Percent In The Average Premium Per Person Summarized Above…”(Emphasis In Original; CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf, Letter To Sen. Bayh, P. 6, 11/30/09)
CBO: “The Legislation Would Impose Several New Fees On Firms In The Health Sector. New Fees Would Be Imposed On Providers Of Health Insurance And On Manufacturers And Importers Of Medical Devices. Both Of Those Fees Would Be Largely Passed Through To Consumers In The Form Of Higher Premiums For Private Coverage. … since large firms are more likely to self-insure, that fee would result in smaller percentage increases in average premiums for large firms than it would for small firms and for nongroup coverage.” (CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf, Letter To Sen. Bayh, P. 15-16, 11/30/09)
$135 BILLION IN CUTS TO HOSPITALS SERVING SENIORS(CBO, E-mail To Senate Leadership Staff, 11/20/09)
$120 BILLION IN CUTS TO MEDICARE ADVANTAGE
“Setting Payment Rates In The Medicare Advantage Program… $118 Billion.” “Setting payment rates in the Medicare Advantage program on the basis of the average of the bids submitted by Medicare Advantage plans in each market, yielding savings of an estimated $118 billion (before interactions) over the 2010– 2019 period.”(CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Sen. Harry Reid, 11/18/09, P. 10)
1.9 Billion Cut To Medicare Advantage Resulting From A Coding Intensity Adjustment: “Subtitle B—Improving Medicare for Patients and Providers; PART III—IMPROVING PAYMENT ACCURACY; Subtitle C—Provisions Relating to Part C; 3203; Application of Coding Intensity Adjustment… 2010-2019… -1.9 [Billion Dollars].”(CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, Letter To Sen. Harry Reid, 11/18/09, P. 28)
MORE THAN $40 BILLION CUT FROM HOME HEALTH AGENCIES(CBO, E-mail To Senate Leadership Staff, 11/20/09)
NEARLY $15 BILLION IN CUTS TO NURSING HOMES(CBO, E-mail To Senate Leadership Staff, 11/20/09)
NEARLY $8 BILLION FROM HOSPICES(CBO, E-mail To Senate Leadership Staff, 11/20/09)
President Asks Senators To “Take A Careful Look At What’s In The Bill” But Senators Of Both Parties Have Been Kept “In The Dark”
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “I Think It’s Important For Every Single Member Of The Senate To Take A Careful Look At What’s In The Bill.” (President Obama, Remarks, 12/15/09)
Democrats Say They’re “In The Dark,” “Not Allowed To Talk,” “Don’t Know,” Have Seen “Nothing Very Specific” And Received “No Explanation” Of What’s In The Bill
SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): “I Would Say To The Senator From Arizona, That I’m In The Dark Almost As Much As He Is. And I’m In The Leadership.” (Sen. Dick Durbin, Floor Remarks, 12/11/09)
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