Posts Tagged ‘Pelosi’
Candidate Obama campaigned as Mr. Everyman – the down-to-earth affable guy who could relate to real people.
President Obama is an arrogant elitist who believes – really believes – that he is a force of nature to which everyone must respond. Take his remarks regarding the Supreme Court’s oral arguments of the health care law.
“I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress.”
Seriously? This from a man who was a constitutional law professor? There have been hundreds, if not thousands, of laws passed by Congress and state legislatures that have been overturned by the Supreme Court and even lower courts. This is a doctrine of legislative review established more than 200 years ago in a case called Marbury v. Madison.
Obama’s assertion that the law “was passed by a strong majority” is revisionist history. It ultimately passed the U.S. House on a 219-212 vote – in which all Republicans and 39 Democrats voted no.
Let’s review how it got to that point, because it’s a story that belies this notion that it was “passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress.”
The first real floor action on health care reform happened in November of 2009 when the Democrats in the House passed their version that included a “public option” which was essentially a full government takeover of health care. That vote was 220-215 with one Republican (Joseph Cao of New Orleans, who won the seat of Democrat William Jefferson after Jefferson was caught stuffing his freezer with cash from bribes) voting yes and 39 Democrats voting no.
Because at least eight Senate Democrats were on record opposing a public option, the Senate drafted it’s own bill and used the Christmas holiday as the leverage point to get it passed.
It passed the Senate with the 60 votes (the minimum required to end debate on legislation) on Christmas Eve 2009 after some rather outrageous giveaways were promised to Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska – “Cornhusker Kickback” – and Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.
Then a funny thing happened on the way to the Capitol – so to speak. Outrage at how the Senate had managed the passage of the health care bill manifested itself in the special election in Massachusetts to fill the Senate seat left vacant as a result of the death of Sen. Ted Kennedy. In what must be one of the most shocking political upsets of all time, Republican Scott Brown defeated Democrat Martha Coakley, thus becoming “41” – that is, the 41st Republican in the Senate, and breaking the 60-vote supermajority of the Democrats.
At that point, passage of Obama’s health care bill looked doomed. But then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi decided that they would force the House to vote on the Senate-passed bill by a legislative trick called “reconciliation.”
I won’t bore you with the reconciliation process, but suffice it to say, the House took what was essentially a draft bill (remember, the Senate pushed through their bill on Christmas Eve with deals being cut hours before, and what officially passed the Senate was language that included handwritten edits, notations and references) and passed it into law, because under reconciliation no language could be changed.
This is why Nancy Pelosi was being honest when she said, “We have to pass the bill so that we can find out what is in it.” The Senate version (which was never intended to become the final law) left huge swaths of decisions to the Secretary of Health and Human Services because they hadn’t come to agreement on most of the implementation points.
Most damaging in the long run to Obama’s law was that the Senate version did not include a “severability clause” which is routine in bigger pieces of legislation. Severability is normally included so that if some portion of a bill is found to be unconstitutional, it doesn’t take the entire bill down.
The severability issue brings us back to Obama’s claim that it would be unprecedented for the Supreme Court to overturn a law. If it had never been done, why would Congress ever put a severability clause into legislation?
I am astounded at the blatant disregard for the truth that the President of the United States employs. Does he really think that “warning” the Supreme Court is smart, let alone appropriate? For him to equate overturning this horrific law to “judicial activism” is to turn the world upside down. Striking down a law because it violates the constitution is not legislating from the bench.
Obviously, Obama is very worried about what might happen to his signature accomplishment. But his outrage is misguided and he isn’t handling this in a very Presidential way.
2012 starts with a bang if you are into politics. There is mounting anticipation for the Iowa Caucuses and who will be winners and who will be losers.
Amidst all the machinations, there are a couple things that stand out to me.
The collapse of Gingrich in Iowa demonstrates once again that negative campaigning can work. Newt’s problem has been he has given his opponents way too much material to attack him. I still think his ad about global warming with Nancy Pelosi from a few years ago is the most damning hit on him.
Santorum’s surge demonstrates the power of the social conservative vote in Iowa. The active evangelical base in Iowa still can’t stomach voting for Romney and they are starting to coalesce around Santorum as Bachmann and Perry just haven’t proven they can get the job done.
The one mistake that Santorum has made is setting an expectation that he will win Iowa. He could come in 2nd or even 3rd and get enough of a bounce that if Gingrich continued to falter, he could take advantage of the void. At this point, because of the expectation of a Santorum win, if he doesn’t, he’s probably done.
While Romney has stayed steady, and the Gingrich threat is dissipating, I think Ron Paul still has a chance to win Iowa. He has the best ground game there, and he is more likely to attract a broader base of non-Republicans who can show up on Caucus night, register as Republicans, and vote for Paul.
I still think it’s possible that we could have three different winners in the first three contests: Paul or Santorum in Iowa, Romney in New Hampshire and Gingrich in South Carolina (where he still leads in polls, for now).
If Gingrich does win South Carolina, that means we are in for a long, hard slog, not unlike what the Obama-Clinton primary looked like in 2008 when it was June before it was decided.
One thing is certain: 2012 is going to be one of the most interesting political years in modern history.
Buckle up and hang on – it’s going to be a wild ride!
I receive news alerts from the New York Times. This morning, I received this news alert related to job numbers:
U.S. Economy Adds 290,000 Jobs in April; Jobless Rate Rises to 9.9%
Three minutes later, wunderkind Senate Policy Committee staffer Chris Jacobs sent out an email:
169,000 Jobs Short…
While it’s welcome news that the economy created jobs last month, it’s worth putting it in context. Not only do the jobs figures reflect a temporary bump in hiring of short-term government bureaucrats for this decade’s census, but they also fall far short of the number of jobs Democrats themselves promised during the health care debate. In her opening statement at the White House summit, Speaker Pelosi noted that passage of the health care bill “will create 4 million jobs – 400,000 jobs almost immediately.” But today’s jobs figures for April show that the private sector created only 231,000 jobs during the month – meaning that this month’s employment figures miss Democrats’ own mark for job creation by nearly half. And job growth within the health care sector actually declined from March to April by 16,000 workers, according to the BLS survey.
Of course, it’s hard to argue that any legislation imposing over half a trillion dollars in tax increases will create jobs in the first place. In other words, the Speaker – having taken her own advice that “we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it” – may well find that passing a $2.6 trillion government takeover of health care will kill jobs, rather than create them.
The Gray Lady must have felt squeamish – or they got a call from Capitol Hill – because 11 minutes later another news alert came across the transom:
Four-Month Rise Strengthens U.S. Job Outlook
It’s kinda cool that one smart Senate staffer can who offers instant response to news can rattle the cage of the self-proclaimed “most important” newspaper in the world.
Now that the health care “reform” bill has been signed into law, details that should have been disclosed and debated before the vote are starting to emerge. Obviously, Nancy Pelosi meant it when she said they’d have to “pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
Amid the flurry speculation and assertions about the bill is to when and if the pre-existing conditions of children will be covered. Such uncertainty is yet another reason why a bill with major implications for everyone in America should never have been drafted in secrecy or have been exempted from standard procedure.
One of the most outrageous revelations is that staffers who work for Members in Leadership or for Committees, the primary authors of the bill itself, may not be required to purchase insurance through the state-run exchanges.
If it’s not good enough for the authors of the bill, why should the American people be stuck with it?
Speaker Pelosi muscled the Democrat health care bill through to passage Sunday night on a 219-212 vote giving President Obama a major legislative victory and very likely sacrificing the political careers of at least 30 House Members and maybe even the Democrat House majority.
While Democrats say the American people are the winners, the real winners are the big insurance and the big drug companies. This bill is yet another big bailout of corporate America.
The insurance companies will receive subsidies to the tune of $400 billion and guaranteed customers because the government will now force nearly every American to buy their product. Drug companies will continue to make record profits because they were given a sweetheart deal that prevents generic drugs from coming to market.
This Wall Street Journal editorial lays out what is in store. It’s not pretty.
This week’s votes don’t end our health-care debates. By making medical care a subsidiary of Washington, they guarantee such debates will never end. And by ramming the vote through Congress on a narrow partisan majority, and against so much popular opposition, Democrats have taken responsibility for what comes next—to insurance premiums, government spending, doctor shortages and the quality of care. They are now the rulers of American medicine.
The process to passage wasn’t pretty either.
While liberal Democrats are fulfilling their dream of a cradle-to-grave entitlement, their swing-district colleagues will pay the electoral price. Those on the fence fell in line out of party loyalty or in response to some bribe, and to show the party could govern. But even then Speaker Nancy Pelosi could only get 85% of her caucus and had to make promises that are sure to prove ephemeral.
Most prominently, she won over Michigan’s Bart Stupak and other anti-abortion Democrats with an executive order from Mr. Obama that will supposedly prevent public funds from subsidizing abortions. The wording of the order seems to do nothing more than the language of the Senate bill that Mr. Stupak had previously said he couldn’t support, and of course such an order can be revoked whenever it is politically convenient to do so.
We have never understood why pro-lifers consider abortion funding more morally significant than the rationing of care for cancer patients or at the end of life that will inevitably result from this bill. But in any case Democratic pro-lifers sold themselves for a song, as they usually do
We also can’t mark this day without noting that it couldn’t have happened without the complicity of America’s biggest health-care lobbies, including Big Pharma, the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association, the Federation of American Hospitals, the Business Roundtable and such individual companies as Wal-Mart. They hope to get more customers, or to reduce their own costs, but in the end they have merely made themselves more vulnerable to the gilded clutches of the political class.
While the passage of ObamaCare marks a liberal triumph, its impact will play out over many years. We fought this bill so vigorously because we have studied government health care in other countries, and the results include much higher taxes, slower economic growth and worse medical care. As for the politics, the first verdict arrives in November.
One of Obama’s main arguments for passing his health care proposal is that it will reduce the deficit and create hundreds of thousands of jobs. Pelosi has even made the claim that the bill would create 400,000 jobs “almost immediately” (really, immediately?)
Beacon’s study shows that rather than creating jobs, the Democrat health care bill will cost more than 700,000 jobs.
Ron Bonjean, communicator extraordinaire, takes the bark of this tree in this piece.
The national unemployment rate is fluctuating from double digit figures to the current rate of 9.7 percent. Millions of Americans haven’t had a job in more than a year and still receive unemployment benefits from the federal government. And now our nation’s debt is threatening our worldwide credit rating due to the trillions of dollars in runaway spending.
So given this drastic situation, why has the Democratic leadership tackled this fundamental problem of economic growth by proposing a massive government takeover of healthcare? It will threaten to place our country further in debt with billions in government subsidies to cover unfunded mandates and the federalization of the healthcare insurance industry. Businesses will be forced to pay major fines for not covering employees. Translation: The healthcare proposal will be a mammoth job killing terminator with a federal license to destroy American small business.
Every day that the White House spends on other issues besides working to create the right conditions for positive job growth is another day that millions of unemployed American voters grow angrier. A better idea would be for the majority to just call in sick to work since they aren’t doing the job voters want them to perform. Faking a head cold might be a better approach because if they pass this healthcare bill, many Democrats who vote for it will probably be looking for work after November.
If Democrats don’t pass health care “reform” by March 26, then the two-week Easter recess could end up looking a lot like last August, when the American electorate made it abundantly clear that they did not favor a government takeover of health care. At least that is the intent of some Republicans, according to this story in the Washington Examiner.
“If health care doesn’t get done by Easter,” says Republican Rep. John Shadegg, “then we need to make Easter look like last August.”
The Democrats continue to push the narrative of inevitability, but even that is wearing thin, given that they have been pushing that narrative since last April. One thing for certain: never have the American people been offered such a stark difference in philosophy over the role of government than what the Democrats are trying to ram through Congress in comparison to what the Republicans would offer as solutions.
The question is whether the moderate Democrats will listen to the American people or Nancy Pelosi.
Nancy Pelosi has hit new heights in craziness. Her definition of legislative debate is to pass a bill, then learn what it does. She actually believes that the Democrat health care bill needs to pass, so then the American people can find out what is in it.
Call it the “trust me, you don’t need to know what’s in this bill until after it passes” factor.
“But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of the controversy.”
So legislation shouldn’t be debated, because that can be, you know, really confusing… foggy, so to speak.
So Nancy is there to clear up the fog. Isn’t that nice of her?
The Democrat Dictionary version of transparency: read the bill after it passes.
UPDATE: Thanks to a friend of mine who posted it on Facebook, we have a clip of Pelosi’s quote.
Obama will lay out his vision on how to pass comprehensive health care reform today, defying, yet again the will of a majority of Americans who have repeatedly rejected government run health care.
Democrats know they have a short fuse on getting this passed. If they can’t pass a bill by the end of March, it is highly unlikely that they will pass anything this year. The reason is that there is a two-week recess starting on March 26. Democrat leaders know that if their members go back to their districts without a bill passed, there is no way that after two weeks of hearing from their constituents (and right before tax day) that they will pass the bill.
In politics, this is known as raw cynicism.
It is a testament to the ideology of Democrat leadership that they know that their proposal is counter to the will of most Americans, and yet they are determined to pass it any way – and change the rules to get it done.
They will pay dearly for their decision in November, but as Pelosi has said, “this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
The next three weeks will be the most important and consequential to the role of government in the lives of the American people as we have seen in my political experience.
And it scares me to death.