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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Health Care Bill a New Low

Health Care Bill an Historic Low for Public Policy in US
The leader of the Democrats in the Senate, Harry Reid is up against former president James Madison.  The Founding Fathers purposely designed government to be responsive to the people (for the people, by the people and of the people).  So when the liberal elite in Congress thought that had a mandate, and threw bipartisanship and GOP involvement out the window, they decided to go “all in with their leader” on health care legislation.   Now the wheels are about to come off, as the unwieldy Senate bill is simply a lousy bill, which lacks public support and confidence.     
Here is Rich Lowry’s take, from National Review Online:
It's astonishing that with 60 votes in the Senate and an 81-vote majority in the House, Democrats have still managed to push the health bill to the point of failure. When significant headwinds developed in August, the prudent play was obvious - scale the bill back, pick off a few Republicans, and settle for three-fourths or less of a loaf. They couldn't bring themselves to do it, preferring to work with duct tape and baling wire to try to hold together an unwieldy bill that isn't paid for and doesn't reduce costs as advertised.
Reid's struggle getting to 60 makes some liberals fear for their country. They lament that America has become "ungovernable." In other words, it isn't putty in their grasping little hands. Unfortunately for them, the founders created a balky system resistant to precipitate change. It is designed to frustrate ideologically drunken (and perhaps temporary) majorities insistent on passing sweeping, unpopular legislation. Reid's difficulty is exactly the way James Madison would have wanted it.
If the health-care bill is necessary and wise, it will withstand a temporary defeat. Democrats could campaign on it around the country next year. They could rebuild public support, turning around the polls. They could enhance their majority in the House and the Senate, bringing more Democrats to Washington determined to pass it. That's how you usually pass historic legislation in a system naturally inclined to the status quo.
But Reid knows long-term persuasion isn't an option. As his approval rating sags below 40 percent back in Nevada, even he might not be returning to Washington after 2010. Every day, every hour matters in the now-or-never calculus of Democrats who already feel their moment slipping agonizingly away.
Rich Lowry is the editor of National Review. 

In a recent Detroit News Opinion piece , Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell lays out the Democrat ‘cram it down the throats’ approach like this: 

Many Americans are just as frustrated with the process as they are with the substance of this debate. In January, the president outlined a path to reform that would involve "not negotiating behind closed doors, but bringing all parties together, and broadcasting those negotiations on C-SPAN ..." Yet that particular pledge seems almost quaint after weeks of closed-door negotiations and a flurry of back-room deals by Democrats aimed at pushing their bill through by Christmas.
Throughout this debate, Republicans have pushed for common sense reforms that would lower costs without raising taxes, premiums, or increasing the federal debt. After all, reform should alleviate existing problems, not spread them. That's the message Americans have been sending all year. Democrats either haven't been listening, or they didn't think people would notice if they took the debate in a different direction. Whatever the reason, a growing number of Americans are demanding that we stop this bill, start over, and get it right. The bill we have simply can't be fixed.
Faced with a bill that does none of the things they said it would, the White House is left with nothing but an empty call for senators to "make history." Americans have a different message for wavering Democrats: Passing this bill would be an historic mistake.
Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is the U.S. Senate Republican leader.

So we hear that US Senator Ben Nelson, D-Nebraska, is the 60th vote for a controversial health care bill, that Americans oppose 2 to 1 in recent polling.   Why is there lack of support by the Amercian people?   The legislative process was not open, despite Democrat promises to the contrary.   The health care bill is simply too complex, too costly to taxpayers, too much like socialized medicine that the American people do not support.   

Now the US Senate votes on health care legislation depend on whether the Democrats Senators show up, are able to vote (US Senator Byrd’s health issues may preclude him from voting) and if they’ll keep their individual deals with the Democrat Leader Reid (such as Nelson, and other wavering Senators).  Meanwhile the Republicans are simple not supporting a bill the American people are opposed to by a 2 to 1 margin.  A Christmas gift?   No bill and a chance for the American people to get what they are wishing for:  That is true health care that works, is affordable, is responsible and honors the doctor & patient relationship.   And maybe even a bill that is truly bipartisan, rather that dictated by one party rule.

© 2009, Jasper Welch, Four Corners Media,  

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