The House of Representatives yesterday passed a Resolution of Disapproval aimed at Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) for his outburst on the House floor during the Obama health care speech to a joint session of Congress last week. The resolution passed by a vote of 240-179.
Seven Republicans voted in favor of the admonition. They are:
Joseph Cao (La.)
Jo Ann Emerson (Mo.)
Jeff Flake (Az.)
Bob Inglis (S.C.)
Walter Jones (N.C.)
Thomas Petri (Wisc.)
Dana Rohrabacher (Ca.)
Twelve Democrats crossed over to vote against.
Michael Arcuri (N.Y.)
William Delahunt (Mass.)
Gabrielle Giffords (Az.)
Maurice Hinchey (N.Y.)
Paul Hodes (N.H.)
Dennis Kucinich (Ohio)
Daniel Maffei (N.Y.)
Eric Massa (N.Y.)
Jim McDermott (Wash.)
Gwen Moore (Wisc.)
Gene Taylor (Miss.)
Harry Teague (N.M.)
Five members voted present, 10 did not vote. Further breakdown at the link.
Reconciliation to be used to Pass Obamacare
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) confirmed late yesterday that Democrats intend to use the budget reconciliation process to shove the government takeover of health care through the Senate with only 51 votes.
“I hope we don’t have to do this but if we can’t get the 60 votes we need then we’ll have no alternative but to do reconciliation,” Reid said. “I strongly favor a bipartisan approach.”
The problem with the “bipartisan approach” is that Democrats simply expect Republicans to vote for their cosmetic changes without any substantive agreements that they will be included in a final product by either the President or the Democrat Congressional leadership.
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance, is set to roll out his committee’s long-awaited bill today. Details of the negotiations are being leaked everywhere by disgruntled Democrats and Republicans alike. The bill is expected to cost $880 billion. Democrats have reportedly changed the name of the public government-run option to “co-op” and have included a mandate for individuals to buy coverage.
Baucus claims there will be a ban on paying for abortion with federal funds included in the bill and that they will set up an as yet to be determined system for citizenship verification. The part of the proposal that’s causing the most heartburn right now is that the bill sets mandatory premiums at a stunning 13 percent of annual income for the middle class.
Some Democrats actually think that’s too expensive, including Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).
“What’s being discussed is the idea of 13 percent of your income as what you would have to pay for some of this basic health coverage,” Wyden said. “What members are going to be grappling with is how do you go home and tell folks something like that would be affordable?”
A family of four making $60,000 would pay a mandated $7,800 a year for the basic health insurance policy alone. That’ll go over really big back home.
Sen. Chuck Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee and one of the “Gang of Six,” released a statement last night after an apparent breakdown in negotiations.
“Over the last several months the bipartisan group of six senators has worked diligently to develop a bipartisan bill for the Finance Committee to consider,” Grassley said. “Unfortunately, we’re operating under an artificial deadline set by the Democratic leadership and the White House. I’m disappointed because it looks like we’re being pushed aside by the Democratic leadership so the Senate can move forward on a bill that, up to this point, does not meet the shared goals for affordable, accessible health coverage that we set forth when this process began.”
“In addition to concerns about costs to taxpayers and affordability for individuals, there are still some serious outstanding issues that have yet to be resolved like preventing taxpayer funding of abortion services and the enforcement against subsidies for illegal aliens,” Grassley said. “I have also pressed for alternatives to the individual mandate and ways to lower the overall cost of the bill, as well as tougher medical liability reform measures.”
Grassley also confirmed that any compromises reached by the group would not have the support of Democrat leadership throughout the process.
“There’s no guarantee that a Finance Committee bill, even if it becomes bipartisan, will stay that way after it leaves the committee,” Grassley said. “An overriding issue for some time has been the fact that members of the Democratic leadership haven’t made a commitment to back a broad bipartisan bill through the entire process.”
That’s not an agreement by any standard.
Whatever is worked out by the Senate Finance Committee has to married to the bill passed out of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) earlier this year. Of course, the three bills produced by the House Committees on Ways & Means, Education & Labor and Energy & Commerce would also have to be merged and passed by the House.
Then whatever is passed by the House will have to be reconciled with whatever comes out of the Senate in a Conference Report (CR). The CR would then have to pass again.
It is highly unlikely that anything but the most extreme of health care options would survive the process that is wholly controlled by the radical liberal Democrat leadership.
Rasmussen: Support for Government-Run Health Care Drops Again
Support for President Obama’s government takeover of America’s health care system has again dropped to pre-joint session speech levels. 45 percent of all voters nationwide now favor the plan while 52 percent are opposed. These latest poll numbers show that 23 percent strongly favor the scheme while 41 percent are strongly opposed.