Friday, March 12, 2010

The Health Care Fatal Attraction

Like so many B Movie Monsters, declaring health care dead can be a tricky thing.   When, by all counts, the bill was on its' ninth life and on life support, Pelosi's declaration she did not have the votes seemed a certain fatal blow.  Still, we've witnessed the monster open a gruesome eye and proceed to unleash more terror in the villages.  Keep this in mind when following the latest blows to ObamaCare.

The first is largely a public relations blow, but still a blow nonetheless.  Who knew President Obama had a cousin who is a practicing physician?  Who knew he opposes ObamaCare?  Compelled by the never ending health care push, Dr. Milton R. Wolf, second cousin to Barack Obama, finally made his opposition public.  Here are few choice excerpts but, by all means, read the rest:
The justification for Obamacare has been to control costs, but the problem is there is little in Obamacare that will do that. Instead, there are provisions that will ration care and artificially set price. This is a confusion of costs and price.
Then there is this choice morsel:
Between Barack and a hard place

I have personally trained and practiced in both the government-run and free-market segments of American medicine. The difference is vast. Patients see this for themselves, and this may be why, according to a recent CNN poll, they oppose Obamacare nearly 3 to 1. I am with them. It is difficult for me to speak publicly against the president on his central issue, but too much is at stake.

I wish my cousin Barack the greatest of success in office. But I feel duty-bound to rise in opposition to Obamacare. I must take a stand for my patients, my profession and, ultimately, my country. The problems caused by government will not be solved by growing government. Now that this new era of big-government takeovers has spread to our health care system, it's not just our freedoms or our wallets that are at stake. It's our lives.
I have long felt this health care debate would have fallen apart long before this, long before the guy with the truck even, had the Obama administration not been shrewd enough to secure the support and subsequent silence of the health care industry.  While some have expressed serious concerns over aspects of the plan, they have generally flown under the radar.  Had they not, the already skeptical public would have been unnerved to a greater degree than has been expressed thus far.  The support, superficial or sincere, of the health care industry has given at least some credibility to the administrations efforts thus far.  For this reason, the editorial penned by a member of Obama's own family opposing the reform is stunning to say the least.

The second is potentially a  much more serious blow.  In any other world this would be fatal but with this Congress and this administration, such limitations seem not to apply.  "This is their do or die moment," according to Paul Ryan so it's "game on" despite the fact the Senate Parliamentarian has declared the Senate bill must be signed into law before any reconciliation games begin, if they ever do:

Regardless of how bad a reconciliation package looks, Ryan says it is the passage of the Senate bill in the House that troubles him the most. “The Senate parliamentarian made it clear today,” he says. “The Senate bill has to become law before reconciliation can be taken up in the Senate. Knowing this, the Democrats are doing whatever they can to convince House members to walk the plank. But let’s be very clear: If the Senate bill passes in the House, it’s not just some setup for reconciliation — it’s a huge, new federal entitlement that’ll be signed into law.”

“To get that, they need to make promises to members about what’ll come next, so look for them to thread the needle on policy changes and abortion in the budget and rules committees,” Ryan says. “Reconciliation is a distraction for the Democratic leadership — something to talk about with members while keeping their eye on the main prize, which is passing the Senate bill.”
This puts passage of the House bill in jeopardy, particularly because the Stupak contingent have all but sworn they would not vote for the Senate bill without the guarantee of a fix for abortion language in the Senate bill they find objectionable. Early in the day it looked as though House leadership would attempt to gain the 216 votes needed for passage without seeking to find a strategy to secure the votes of the Stupak group. The news of the Parliamentarian's decision, however, raises the potential that Stupak had already decided at least he could not support the intended path to passing legislation. The following interview with Greta Van Sustern makes clear Stupak has severe doubts there will be a fix, whether by reconciliation or a magic wand, to the Senate bill once passed:

What becomes rather clear in the interview, there is a good deal of dysfunction amongst the Democrats about passing this bill. The timelines, growing distrust between the chambers and genuine fears members of the House will be fed in sacrifice to appease the great government health care gods all appear to be weighing against the likelihood of passage.   Michelle Bachmann was interviewed on Hannity's radio program earlier today and stated the Democrats were at each others throats.  Nevertheless, the Obama administration and Democratic leadership will not be deterred.

Despite the fact that everyday brings at least another potential no vote to the surface, we must remember we've seen this all before.  When no one could believe they would stay in session in the Senate to pass the unpopular bill on Christmas Eve, the odds were defied and the bill passed.  If there is a will there is a way with this Congress and we can say without absolute certainty there is a will.  Astonishing though it might be, the progressives are actually still looking for ways they can add on the public option.  Don't look now, Glenn Close just opened an eye from the bathtub.  The health care "Fatal Attraction" continues.

Via Memeorandum
For More see: And so it goes in ShreveportPundit & PundetteLegal InsurrectionMaggie's NotebookThe Daley Gator, & Potluck


  1. This is incredible. I wish he would have spoke up sooner!

  2. Hi Janet,

    I know it makes me wonder how come it took him this long to say enough is enough. This administration is unbelievable. As bad as I thought they were going to be, they ended up being 20 times worse.


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