by John Hawkins | March 19, 2010 9:00 am
The problems with health care reform are legion. It’ll raise premiums, unconstitutionally force people to buy health care, cause the deficit to skyrocket, slash Medicare spending to create a new entitlement, lead to rationing, cause a significant number of doctors to quit or retire early, and destroy the quality of care in America.
The process has also been illegitimate. We have a bill that represents a takeover of 1/6 of the US economy, but there are no Republican votes on board and Democrats are using arcane procedural tricks, reconciliation in the Senate and the Slaughter rule in the House, to pass a bill the American people have clearly said that they don’t want.
Of course, I can point those things out all day long, but it doesn’t matter to Democrats because I’m a conservative. Ideology trumps truth with them. So, I decided to put together a series: of quotes from Democrats. If Dems won’t believe me about how bad this bill is, how crooked the process is, the lies that were told to promote it, how it funds abortion, and how much hypocrisy and broken promises were involved in getting to this point, maybe they’ll believe other Democrats.
The (Healthcare) bill that’s coming through the House, with or without the public option, isn’t good for America. — Rep. John Adler (D-NJ)
There’s a lot of discomfort with the reconciliation process, the self-implementing rule, where you wouldn’t have a formal vote on maybe the most important policy of the past 40 years. I have a big issue with the way they’re doing the process. I think it’s wrong and my constituents don’t like it. — Jason Altmire
Reconciliation would hurt healthcare reform, it would make it partisan, it would hurt, it would stymie it, it would make it very partisan. — Max Baucus (D-MT)
There’s going to be a tendency on the part of our people to be in denial about all this, but if you lose Massachusetts and that’s not a wake-up call, there’s no hope of waking up. — Evan Bayh
You know we’re going to control the insurance companies. — Joe Biden
I was one of the authors of the legislation that created the budget reconciliation process in 1974, and I am certain that putting health care reform and climate change legislation on a freight train through Congress is an outrage that must be resisted. — Robert Byrd (D-WV)
Bluntly put, this is the political reality: First, the battle for public opinion has been lost. Comprehensive health care has been lost. If it fails, as appears possible, Democrats will face the brunt of the electorate’s reaction. If it passes, however, Democrats will face a far greater calamitous reaction at the polls. Wishing, praying or pretending will not change these outcomes. — Patrick H. Caddell & Douglas E. Schoen
Pelosi says she might use a procedural tactic where the House will vote on the package of fixes to the Senate bill, and then that vote would signify that lawmakers- quote, ‘deem’ the health care bill to be passed.
Politically speaking, this is beyond sleazy. It’s meant to protect House Democrats, who are all running for reelection in November, from having to make a tough vote up or down on health care reform. Pelosi says of this process- quote, ‘I like it, because people don’t have to vote on the Senate bill,’ unquote. In Nancy Pelosi’s world, accountability is a dirty word. — Jack Cafferty
As I said publicly, I can’t vote for a bill that will publicly fund abortion. — Chris Carney (D-Pa.)
I don’t believe reconciliation was ever intended for (health care reform). It doesn’t work well for writing major, substantive legislation. — Kent Conrad (D-ND)
What good is reading the (health care) bill if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill? — John Conyers (D-MI)
The reason tort reform is not in the [health care] bill is because the people who wrote it did not want to take on the trial lawyers in addition to everybody else they were taking on. And that’s the plain and simple truth. — Howard Dean
The last time I had to confront something like (these town halls) was when I voted for the civil rights bill and my opponent voted against it. At that time, we had a lot of Ku Klux Klan folks and white supremacists and folks in white sheets and other things running around causing trouble.” — John Dingell (D-MI)
While I certainly support this initiative…I will not bend on the principle of federal funding on abortion. They are going to have to do it without me and without the other pro-life Democrats. — Steve Dreihaus (OH-1)
Anyone who would stand before you and say ‘well, if you pass health care reform next year’s health care premiums are going down,’ I don’t think is telling the truth. I think it is likely they would go up. — Dick Durbin
Insurance companies win. Time to kill this monstrosity coming out of the Senate. — Kos
This bill represents a giveaway to the insurance industry. $70 billion dollars a year, and no guarantees of any control over premiums, forcing people to buy private insurance, five consecutive years of double-digit premium increases. — Dennis Kucinich
The problem is this we are spending almost a trillion dollars and folks are telling me I should vote yes and we will fix it later. You wouldn’t buy a car for a trillion dollars and say yeah, it doesn’t run but we will fix it later. — Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.)
(The Slaughter Rule is) disingenuous. It would really call into question the credibility of the House. — Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.)
And what I believe that means is we’ve got to break out of what I call, sort of, the 50-plus-one pattern of presidential politics. Which is, you have nasty primaries where everybody’s disheartened. Then you divide the country 45 percent on one side, 45 percent on the other, 10 percent in the middle – all of them apparently live in Florida and Ohio – and battle it out. And maybe you eke out a victory of 50-plus-one, but you can’t govern. I mean, you get Air Force One, there are a lot of nice perks to being president, but you can’t deliver on health care. We’re not going to pass universal health care with a 50-plus-one strategy. — Barack Obama
You know I respect what the Clinton’s tried to do in 1993 in moving health reform forward. But they made one really big mistake, and that is they took all their people and all their experts into a room and then they closed the door. We will work on this process publicly. It’ll be on C-SPAN. It will be streaming over the net. — Barack Obama
How many people are getting insurance through their jobs right now? Raise your hands. All right. Well, a lot of those folks, your employer it’s estimated would see premiums fall by as much as 3,000 percent, which means they could give you a raise. — Barack Obama
I don’t spend a lot of time worrying about what the procedural rules are in the House or Senate. — Barack Obama
We said from the start that it was going to be important for us to be consistent in saying to people if you can have your — if you want to keep the health insurance you got, you can keep it, that you’re not going to have anybody getting in between you and your doctor in your decision making. And I think that some of the provisions that got snuck in might have violated that pledge. — Barack Obama
Bipartisanship is a two-way street. A bill can be bipartisan without bipartisan votes. Republicans have left their imprint. — Nancy Pelosi
(The Slaughter Rule is) more insider and process-oriented than most people want to know. But I like it because people don’t have to vote on the Senate bill. — Nancy Pelosi
These disruptions (at Town Halls) are occurring because opponents are afraid not just of differing views — but of the facts themselves. Drowning out opposing views is simply un-American.” — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (Md.) (D-MI)
While deeming, like reconciliation, has been used by Republicans and Democrats in the past, the context in which it would be used in this case leads me to conclude that it would poison an already terribly partisan atmosphere and leave the Congress even less able to find bipartisan solutions to fiscal problems that are on the verge of becoming overwhelming. — Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D-S.D.)
No one has talked about reconciliation, but that’s what you folks have talked about ever since that came out. — Harry Reid
I do not like the slaughter rule, it lacks honesty and transparency. — Joe Sestak
Without a public option, it’s just a giveaway to the insurance companies, and it does nothing to control costs. — Patrick Robinson, spokesman for MoveOn
If you pass the Stupak amendment, more children will be born, and therefore it will cost us millions more. That’s one of the arguments I’ve been hearing. Money is their hang-up. Is this how we now value life in America? If money is the issue – come on, we can find room in the budget. This is life we’re talking about. — Bart Stupak
Republicans and their allied groups — desperate after losing two consecutive elections and every major policy fight on Capitol Hill — are inciting angry mobs of a small number of rabid right-wing extremists funded by K Street lobbyists to disrupt thoughtful discussions about the future of healthcare in America taking place in congressional districts across the country. — Democratic National Committee communications director Brad Woodhouse
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