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Friday, March 19, 2010

Americans Overwhelm Congress on Healthcare

American People Overwhelm Congressional Switchboard

The American people are feed up with the Health Care debacle in the House, so with a bit of encouragement from Rush, the Congressional switchboards have been overwhelmed.

Roll Call reports that the congressional switchboard has been overwhelmed with telephone calls for four consecutive days, since conservative Talk Radio host Rush Limbaugh encouraged to call their congressmen and protest Obamacare.
"Calls to the House numbered close to 100,000 an hour, creating a bottleneck in a phone system only meant to handle 50,000 calls an hour. The chamber has been similarly overloaded for four consecutive days, beginning on Tuesday when radio host Rush Limbaugh told viewers to call the Capitol switchboard phone number," Roll Call said.

Source:  Roll Call

Meanwhile, as the Dems whip their majority caucus into shape for the Health Care bill, the Congressional dealmaking is in full swing.   And the GOP House leader is pledging to expose the deals to the American public.

House Minority Leader John Boehner warned vulnerable Democrats that the healthcare debate won’t end after President Barack Obama signs the bill into law.

Pledging to do “everything [he] can to defeat the bill,” the top-ranking House Republican said on Friday that “the American people are going to hear about every payoff, every kickback and every sweetheart deal that comes at them.”

Source: The Hill Newspaper

The deals being cut are not just among Congressman and women to get their Yes vote the Obama-Pelosi-Ried health care bill, but with major health care special interests to keep them quiet and to put them into “check” and not oppose the bill.    But a GOP Congressman is asking questions of the secret deals:

The ranking member of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee is opening an investigation into the "secret deals" that the White House and Democrats made with various healthcare stakeholders.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) sent letters today to six organizations asking them what agreements, if any, they made with the Obama administration in exchange for their support of (or lack of opposition to) healthcare reform.  In the letter, Issa cites reports that Democrats cut deals with the hospital industry and the pharmaceutical industry to prevent them from campaigning against reform legislation.
Both conservatives and liberal activists have decried the supposed deal with PhRMA, in which Democrats reportedly agreed to not pass legislation easing the importation generic drugs from Canada or use Medicare's leverage to lower drug prises as long as PhRMA did not oppose healthcare reform.
"These examples are only the tip of the iceberg," Issa wrote. "The negotiations leading up to the finished health care reform bill and the consequences of the deals cut by the White House and Democratic leadership are likely to become the subject of Congressional oversight and scrutiny for years to come."
The organizations receiving letters are the American Medical Association (AMA), U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the American Hospital Association, the pharmaceutial industry lobby (PhRMA), the AFL-CIO, and the AARP. Among those organizations, only the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has actively campaigned against Democrats' proposals. Others, including the AFL-CIO, are working hard to pass the legislation
Issa asks the organizations to identify any "action (or inaction) expressly or implicitly agreed to by your organization or its agent during any meetihg with the White House or Congressional leadership regarding health care reform."
Source:  The Hill 

And from Representative Darrell Issa’s Twitter page on Friday March 19, 2010

If ObamaCare's as great as they say, I wouldn't have to investigate the kickbacks needed to pass it:     Launched full-on investigation into White House's secret deals to silence health care foes:      Twitter posts by Rep Issa (R-49th, California)    3.19.2010

Finally, here is Representative’s brief on the $940 Billion bill (as per the recent Congressional Budget Office CBO) preliminary estimate:

The House of Representatives is currently scheduled to vote on health care reform legislation Sunday. On Thursday, the Congressional Budget Office released a preliminary cost estimate of $940 billion.  Democrats are touting this figure as "cost-savings" and an overrall reducation to the federal budget, but here is what they're not telling you is that this health takeover:
1.  Will increase your taxes by $569.2 billion;
2.  Will drastically cut Medicare funding by $500 billion;
3.  Will double the tax on health insurers in 2014;
4.  Will create another entitlement program like Social Security and Medicare; and
5.  Is filled with pork like the "Cornhusker Kickback" and the "Louisiana Purchase" used to buy votes of members of Congress.

Contact Representative Issa via his web page

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