Mar 22, 2010

Special Healthcare Report

Well, they flushed it, and it went down. With it passed, no political group will have the will or courage to go back, so we will go forward to the eventual fiscal collapse Unless China wants to give us a couple more Trillion? Unlikely.

I have to credit the stress the Democrats were under. Let’s see, if I hold out I might sell my vote for more, but if they get to 216, I’ll get nothing…. Oh, the challenge. And they had to work on a Sunday?! How quaint. Maybe they got double time for their efforts?

Reid promises to add public option to health care ‘in the coming months’
In a letter to two of his more progressive colleagues in the Senate — Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Bernie Sanders of Vermont — the Nevada Democrat implicitly apologized for his inability to get a government-run insurance plan into the final piece of health care legislation and promised to keep working to get the policy into law… “Nevertheless, like you, I remain committed to pursuing the public option. While I believe that the legislation we are considering does much to provide affordable coverage to millions of Americans and curb insurance company abuses, I also believe that the public option would provide additional competition to make insurance even more affordable. As we have discussed, I will work to ensure that we are able to vote on the public option in the coming months.” That was all that Bernie Sanders needed to hear — or rather, all the thin political cover that Bernie Sanders needed — to drop his bid to add a public option to the reconciliation bill. But here’s a fun footnote from HuffPo: “The search now is for a vehicle outside health care reform to get a public plan into law. The same institutional hurdles that killed the provision in the previous go-rounds — mainly that there aren’t 60 supportive senators to break a filibuster — remain. But aides on the Hill are already looking to future reconciliation vehicles to which they can attach the public plan, which would, in turn, allow for it to pass via an up-or-down vote.”

216 in reach: House Dems have the votes to pass Healthcare reform bill
Excerpt: House Democratic leaders have the votes to overhaul the nation's healthcare system.There are 35 Democrats who are planning to vote no and two undecided Democrats -- Reps. Bobby Rush (Ill.) and Loretta Sanchez (Calif.) -- according to The Hill's whip list. If every member votes, Democrats can have 37 defections and still clear the bill. The abortion deal struck by the White House and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) with Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) put Democrats over the top. That compromise moved a handful of Democrats from the "no" column into the "yes" category.

The Take: Historic win or not, Democrats could pay a price
Excerpt: The lengthy and rancorous debate has inflicted considerable damage on the president and his party. It helped spark the grass-roots "tea party" movement and generated angry town hall meetings last summer that led to some opponents painting Obama as a socialist and a communist for advocating a greater government role in the health-care industry. The issue now is whether final passage of the legislation -- Senate leaders say they will take up the reconciliation bill this week -- will cause more harm or begin a turnaround in the Democrats' fortunes heading toward the November midterm elections. This is not how the struggle over health care was supposed to unfold. When the president decided last year to push for comprehensive reform, there appeared to be the best opportunity in a generation to ensure that nearly all Americans have access to health insurance. There also seemed to be a consensus among business, labor and health-industry groups that government help was needed to rein in the escalating costs of health care.

So, what’s in the bill?

There will be blood!!
Excerpt: I’m not crazy about congressional Democrats right now. As I write this, Congressional Democrats are engaged in a furious partisan battle to pass their idea of healthcare reform. Alas it is an idea the majority of Americans do not share. It is in fact an idea that the majority of congressmen do not share, which is why President Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are twisting arms, bribing, cajoling and threatening all manner of mischief in order to eek out a majority vote – or non vote -- on a bill the people have made clear they do not want. They may succeed. I am not all that enamored of Congressional Republicans either. It is painful indeed to listen to the feigned outrage of so many Republicans who spent years in office redefining the meaning of concepts like “limited Government,” and “fiscal conservative”. Surely they must realize that their inept stewardship over so many years not only opened the door for the leftist now in power, but also rolled out the red carpet for them….If there is to be a second revolution then let it begin here and now! Let the political bloodbath begin in November followed closely by more bloodletting in 2012. No one will be safe. Neither a “D” nor an “R” following a name will be sufficient protection from the people’s blade! There is no time like now to begin the winnowing process; and there is no better reason than to dismantle a government that can’t be trusted to keep its part of the bargain.

Democrats Have Painted Themselves into a Corner
Excerpt: Democrats have painted themselves into an ugly corner with their Health Care Reform Bill (HCR). The Obama administration has managed to take what has been a standard Democratic vote-getting ploy -- promise government largesse to core constituencies and let the rest of the country pay for it -- and screw it up so badly that regardless of whether HCR passes or fails, Democrats will suffer heavy losses in the midterm election. Problem is, it's not just Democrats in the corner; they've got the whole country held hostage with them.

Now for the Slaughter
Excerpt: Excuse me, but it is embarrassing — really, embarrassing to our country — that the president of the United States has again put off a state visit to Australia and Indonesia because he's having trouble passing a piece of domestic legislation he's been promising for a year will be passed next week. What an air of chaos this signals to the world. And to do this to Australia of all countries, a nation that has always had America's back and been America's friend. How bush league, how undisciplined, how kid's stuff.

The Real Score Starts To Emerge
Excerpt: The Democrats are exultant over the preliminary CBO score (preliminary because even the Congressional Budget Office hasn’t had time to examine whether it jives with the previous Senate bill) issued this morning. The score (costing) is on the Democrats’ reconciliation adjustments to the Senate ObamaCare bill that it remains under $1-trillion in spending and that together with added revenues will further reduce the deficit. There’s increasing amazement at this bald-faced assertion. The real score will be seen this weekend in the Democrats' trickery vote and the consequences they face next November. The Republican leadership is still trying to decipher the fine print, but are quickly getting to the bottom line. Senator McConnell issued a press release saying: “They get there with even higher taxes and deeper Medicare cuts than the first Senate bill.

More cuts loom as state faces $295m in red ink
MassHealth, other services blamed for drain on coffers
Meanwhile, how’s State Government Healthcare working out for the folks in Massachusetts? Excerpt: Massachusetts is potentially facing a new budget gap of up to $295 million this year, a grim forecast that state officials said could spell yet another round of painful cuts before the fiscal year ends in June. Patrick administration officials blamed the gap on rising demand for the joint state and federal health care program for low-income residents known as MassHealth, increasing demand for homeless shelters, and on below-projected revenue from state fees and federal aid.

CBO to Ryan on real costs of the Healthcare bill

cutn'pasted from my source, The Old Jarhead

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