Tag Archives: universal health care

A Woman’s Work is Sometimes Done!

From Steve Kornacki at Salon:

The seeds of Sunday night’s historic House vote were planted not by Barack Obama’s election in 2008, but by a little-noticed internal House leadership contest nearly a decade ago.

Back in the fall of 2001, two Democrats were vying for the vacant position of House minority whip. But the election wasn’t really for the caucus’ No. 2 leadership spot. It was for the top job.

Richard Gephardt, then the Democrats’ House leader, would be stepping down after the next election, so the winner of the whip’s race would be in line to replace him – and to become the House Democrats’ public face for the next decade, at least. Which is why there was trepidation – to put it mildly – among more than a few Democratic members about the race’s front-runner: Nancy Pelosi.


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Does This Mean Japanese Beetles are Now Called Freedom Beetles?

From Hot Dish Politics at the Star Tribune:

Speaking to a crowd in Rochester yesterday, Rep. Michele Bachmann warned that Democratic health reform proposals could eventually prompt the government to use health care as a tool to limit people’s free speech.

The Post-Bulletin has a video and story of Bachmann’s address to about 200 people.

She explained that a man recently approached her to say that in Japan, which “had the government takeover of health care,” the government puts people who criticize the health system on “a list” and denies them treatment.

Is that what the man really said? Maybe what he really said was just…


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Did you lose your Japanese to Batshit Babble Dictionary, Michele?
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He’d be a party pooper, if he could only find a party that’ll have him!

From Fox News (seriously!):

Rep. Parker Griffith, the Alabama Republican who recently crossed over from the Democratic Party, is facing a mini-revolt from some home-state GOP officials who question his loyalty to his newly adopted party.

The local Republican operations for two counties inside Griffith’s 5th District passed a set of resolutions in the past week urging Republicans to elect anyone but Griffith in the state’s June primary.

The Limestone County Republican Party passed a set of measures Thursday night, one of which called on Griffith to turn over all campaign money he raised as a Democrat and not use any of it in his race for re-election — Griffith’s third-quarter fundraising report showed he had $619,000 on hand. The county party also recommended that Republicans support one of the other two GOP candidates in the race.

The Madison County Republican Party on Monday passed a measure recommending the same thing, as well as urging the congressional delegation and national party not to get involved in the primary.

So how do you like being a Rethuglican now?


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The Mouse That Whored..for the Insurance Industry

From E.J. Dionne at The Washington Post:

Take yourself back to the endless wrangling in Sen. Max Baucus’ Finance Committee – or, more particularly, among his select “gang of six,” including three Republicans, two of whom clearly never had any intention of voting for health-care reform. They negotiated and negotiated and negotiated and negotiated — and got nowhere. Baucus failed to produce a draft bill before the August recess. The Democrats’ summer of discontent and the tea party madness followed.

This, it turns out, was a crucial moment. It set back the schedule for a health-care bill by at least a month, maybe two. There was no urgency in the Baucus process. Now there is urgency. And that gave Joe Lieberman his near dictatorial powers to kill a Medicare buy-in proposal that he had supported as recently as three months ago.


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Who Ya Gonna Call? Filibuster!

From Joe Conason at Salon:

If Democrats are disappointed by Joe Lieberman’s threat to filibuster any healthcare reform bill that includes a public option, they shouldn’t be. Despite all of his past promises to support universal healthcare, nothing was more predictable than the Connecticut senator’s fealty to the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyists.

Much the same can be said of Sen. Evan Bayh, who emerged from hiding on healthcare to announce that he too plans to filibuster against reform with the Republicans, regardless of what his constituents and Americans in general plainly want. Like Lieberman, his state is home to powerful corporations that want reform killed — and like Lieberman, his wife has brought home very big paychecks from those same interests. . (UPDATE: A report published in a South Bend paper Thursday night says Bayh may now support a floor debate.)


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There’s no cure for selfishness

From Joe Conason at Salon:

Sept. 11, 2009 | In the lyrical conclusion of President Obama’s speech on healthcare, he talked about the emotions and experiences that drove his late friend Sen. Edward Kennedy to work so tirelessly and passionately for universal coverage. He tried to describe what Kennedy must have felt as two of his children suffered through bouts of cancer. Ordeals such as those, said the president, had helped Kennedy to understand the “sheer terror and helplessness” of parents whose children are stricken by serious disease, and lack the means to save them.

Reaching out to his opponents, the president tried to emphasize that such empathy toward other human beings “is not a partisan feeling,” but is instead an aspect of our national character.

…snip…

To support that reassuring observation, he cited the landmark bills that Kennedy’s Republican colleagues have co-sponsored in years past to extend healthcare to children and protect hospital patients. As he said, Americans of all parties (and none) surely possess the capacity for compassion.

But why then do nearly all of the Republicans in Congress find it so difficult to empathize with the tens of millions of their uninsured and underinsured fellow citizens — and so easy to contemplate the ruin of reform yet again, even though that means condemning hundreds of thousands to sickness, bankruptcy and even death? Why would they still insist, after 40 successful years of Medicare, that government must have no further role in ensuring decent healthcare for every American?

Perhaps the problem is that a certain kind of Republican — often with a connection to the White House or Capitol Hill — will only endorse government action to remedy the adversity they have experienced for themselves.


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Is there a doctor in the House? Yeah, 14 of ’em!

From the Los Angeles Times:

WASHINGTON — In the struggle to overhaul the nation’s health care system, 16 physicians have ended up in ringside seats — as members of the House and Senate.

But they have taken different lessons from their experiences in medicine, and they do not agree on what a bill should look like.


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