Gallup Poll: Obamacare Still Unpopular; 75% Say Individual Mandate Unconstitutional
Both the House and Senate are back in session. The House will reconvene at 2pm and is expected to take up H.R. 347 Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011 conference report for debate and a possible vote. The House passed this bill last year on Feb 28, 2011 and the US Senate passed the bill one year later on Feb 6, 2012 with variations from the House bill. Today, the House may also take up HR 1433 — Private property rights bill.
Later this week the House is expected to address the following bills:
HR 665 — Selling federal land
HR 3902 — D.C. special elections
HR 2117 — For-profit college regulations
HR 1837 — San Joaquin River
The Senate will reconvene at 2 PM today. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) will then be recognized for the annual reading of George Washington’s Farewell Address. At 4:30 PM the Senate will take up the nomination of Margo Brodie to be US Judge for the Eastern District of New York and vote at 5:30 on the nomination. During the week the Senate is expected to take up S 1813 — Surface transportation
Public Notice has called attention to the two committee hearings this week; the last two were highlighted by the House Republican Conference:
- House Budget Fiscal 2013 Budget Full Committee Hearing, Wednesday, 2 PM, 210 Cannon House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee Markup to Abolish Independent Payment Advisory Board, Wednesday, Feb 29, 10:00a.m., 2123 Rayburn
- Senate Budget, Fiscal 2013 Budget Full Committee Hearing, Tuesday, 9:30a.m., 608 Dirksen Senate Budget hearing, with Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, Tuesday, Feb 28, 9:30 AM, 608 Dirksen
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sebelius will discuss the details of the President’s HHS FY13 budget proposals at a House Ways & Means Committee hearing on President Obama’s budget proposals for fiscal year 2013, tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb 29, 1 PM, 1100 Longworth House Office Building.
- The House Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy and the Subcommittee on Energy and Power will hold a joint hearing on “FY 2013 EPA Budget" with Lisa P. Jackson, Administrator U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb 28, 10 AM, 2123 of the Rayburn House Office Building
According to the USA Today/Gallup Poll, 53% of voters in swing states say it was a “bad thing” that the Democrat-controlled Congress passed the law. Nationwide, 50% say the same. Seventy-two percent of swing state voters say the law has had no effect on their family, and 69% say the same thing nationwide. More voters say the law has hurt them than say it has helped. A plurality of voters nationwide and in swing states say they think Obama’s health care law will make things worse for their families. In swing states, 53% of voters say they would support repealing the law.
Recall what Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said in late 2009 as Senate Democrats were jamming their health care bill through the Senate and cutting off amendments: “When people see what is in this bill and when people see what it does, they will come around.”
With the Supreme Court set to hear arguments in March on the constitutionality of the Democrat health care law’s mandate that every person buy health insurance, the USA Today/Gallup Poll finds huge majorities of voters consider that mandate unconstitutional. Nationwide, 75% consider it unconstitutional, and 76% in swing states agree.
In its own analysis of national numbers, Gallup writes, “Americans overwhelmingly believe the ‘individual mandate,’ as it is often called, is unconstitutional, by a margin of 72% to 20%. Even a majority of Democrats, and a majority of those who think the healthcare law is a good thing, believe that provision is unconstitutional.”
Meanwhile, the law is still falling short of the predictions and promises Democrats made when it passed. The Washington Post reported last week, “Medical costs for enrollees in the health-care law’s high-risk insurance pools are expected to more than double initial predictions, the Obama administration said Thursday in a report on the new program. . . . Those who have enrolled in the program are projected to have significantly higher medical costs than the government initially expected. . . . The costs also are significantly higher than those of similar high-risk pools that many states have operated for decades.”
As Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said recently when Republican senators released their latest amicus brief challenging the constitutionality of the Democrats’ health care law, “The Democrats’ 2,700 page health spending bill represents an unprecedented and unconstitutional expansion of the federal government into the daily lives of every American. Americans have rejected the law’s mandate that they must buy government-approved health insurance, and we hope the Supreme Court will do the same.”
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