It has been over a year since President Obama announced his plans for comprehensive health reform.
Since the announcement, as Americans learned more and more about the Democrats’ health care bill, opposition to the left’s plans for big government health care have grown and grown.
It started with the explosion of outrage at town hall meetings over the bill’s cuts to Medicare to pay for new bureaucracies and programs.
It gained steam when Americans realized the frightening potential for “death panels” when you give government the power to deny care based on budgetary concerns.
And it reached critical mass when the corrupt manner in which the bill was being shoved through Congress was exposed to the American people.
However, despite all the polls showing that Americans want Congress to scrap the current bill and start over, it is now clear that Democratic leaders are bound and determined to ignore the will of the people.
President Obama has called for the House of Representatives to pass by March 18 the same bill the Senate passed in December.
We must stop this bill from passing.
We DO Need Real Reform, but NOT This Travesty of a Bill
To be clear, I passionately believe America’s health care system is badly in need of reform.
I founded the Center for Health Transformation seven years ago as a unique collaboration of doctors, hospitals, and industry leaders dedicated to developing a 21st century, personalized, intelligent health care system.
In this column, and in op-eds and books, I have written repeatedly about common sense, market-oriented solutions that would save lives and save money.
I have always put the focus on solutions when it came to health care because when it comes to an issue that means so much to so many Americans, I believe solving problems must rise above political posturing.
I have even taken heat from fellow conservatives for cooperating with leading Democrats to achieve health reforms we agree on, like greater use of health information technology. In fact, there are even some specific elements of the bill — like payment reform to reward quality care — with which I agree.
However, as someone who has dedicated the last decade of his life to fixing what’s broken in America’s health care system, and has reached across party lines to do so, I regrettably have to say that this bill will do vastly more harm than good.
It will raise the cost of health care for everyone through crushing new taxes.
It will reduce benefits for millions of senior citizens without fixing the underlying structural problems of Medicare that are leading the program towards bankruptcy.
It will put government bureaucrats at the center of our health care system, not doctors and patients.
Furthermore, as Mark Steyn and others have noted, if this bill becomes law there may be no going back from a more statist, more bureaucratic, more left-of-center political culture that would mean the demise of America as a unique civilization.
Don’t Let Speaker Pelosi Be the Only Voice Your Congressman Hears
So it all comes down to one final vote.
If Speaker Pelosi succeeds in twisting enough arms and making enough promises to get the votes she needs, President Obama could sign the left’s big government, big bureaucracy health bill into law the next day.
Right now, Speaker Pelosi has the ear of skeptical members of her caucus.
She’s trying to make your member of Congress forget about the unpopularity of the bill in their districts.
She’s distracting him or her with the siren song of Washington fundraisers and other big party politics.
Speaker Pelosi would have your representative listen to Washington insiders rather than you.
We need to break through the Washington bubble and remind Congress who is in charge.
Tell him or her to vote against the left’s big government health care bill. Then call all your friends and family and ask them to do the same.
Newt’s Quick Links
• ReAL Action, the citizen-activist arm of Renewing American Leadership, has posted a video showing that while Speaker Pelosi and President Obama insist that there is no federal funding for abortions, it is, in fact, in the bill. You can watch it here.
• Monday was the 27th anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s “Evil Empire” speech, one of two speeches Reagan delivered in March 1983 that changed history. Newt.org commemorates these speeches here.
• To learn more about Ronald Reagan’s pivotal role in history, check out Callista’s and my documentary Ronald Reagan: Rendezvous with Destiny.
• At the Americano, Melissa Blair tackles the touchy subject of the many conservative Republican Hispanics who lost in Texas primaries. Click here.
• Steve Everley at American Solutions lays out how the Obama administration’s Department of Interior has used one delaying tactic after another to avoid allowing more offshore drilling. Read Delay, Baby, Delay.