|ObamaCare by Susan Trevelyan-Syke|
All the recent independent polls
taken show the American public does NOT favour the current (section
changes yet to be written) Senate bill since it dropped both
single-payer or public option and Medicare buy-in. The public opposes
mandated insurance purchases from private insurers. Failure to buy is
punished by a fine or jail.
The bill delivers a bonanza of 30 million mandated clients to the insurance industry and contains no cost controls.
The Brian J Dorgan (D, NV) bill, which would have allowed Americans to re-import drugs bought by the Canadian government under their lower negotiated rates, was defeated 51-49 after a vigorous White House campaign to prevent it reaching 60 which would have avoided filibuster.
It is alleged that the White House was trying to protect the deal it negotiated in private with PhRMA to maintain pharmaceutical prices in return for its not opposing the health care bill.
Congressman Michael Burgess (R, TX), who is a doctor and founder/chairman of the House Health Care Caucus, has demanded the White House turn over any written contracts or data on its deal with PhRMA.
Democrat Henry Waxman (CA), chairman of the House Committee of Oversight and Government Reform, also demanded to see any such documents.
Republican threats of time-consuming procedural moves and filibuster forced Senator Bernard Sanders (I, VT) to withdraw his single-payer bill from having a vote.
The Republican Senators have opposed all health care reform in a solid block assisted by Senators Joseph Lieberman (I, CT) and Ben Nelson (D, NE). Nelson demands absolute prevention of any funding for abortions.
Respected Progressive Dr Howard Dean, former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, called for the bill to be killed or stripped down to its good parts and sent back to the House for conference revision. He noted that the bill was in no way health care reform.
Representatives of the White House made serious mistakes in calling Dean "insane", "irrational" and a "spoiler" among other things. Their strategy backfired among Democrats, the public and the media.
Unhappy Progressives who had fought hard for a single-payer or public option with a Medicare buy-in and without a mandate were galvanized into fighting the current bill which they feel conceded too much to the corporate New Dems and Conservative Democrats.
Two of America's largest unions concur with Dean and told President Obama to live up to his campaign promises and send the bill back to the House "or else".
The Senate health care battle has publicly broken open the Democratic Party disputes between the Progressives and the White House over multiple issues including the economy, healthcare, jobs, the Afghanistan war surge, etc.
Game playing and grandstanding in the Senate has soured voters on health care reform and lowered public respect for it to a new low--hard to believe it could have gone lower.
People across the spectrum believe the system is broken and this Administration is not doing enough to fix it.
The public sees only corporations prospering and gaming the system. Individuals are suffering without help.
The majority of Americans polled now say they want the current Senate bill killed and, since it is identified in the public mind as ObamaCare, Obama's ratings are suffering badly.
Three other factors affecting Obama's plummeting ratings are the economy, budget deficit and no jobs--the very issues Obama promised to improve in his Presidential campaign.
Progressives want solutions that help citizens and do not only benefit large corporations--the crux of their argument against the health care bill and Obama's policies.
It was interesting to see the amount of pressure put on all Senate Democrats to support the bill despite admissions that it is flawed by former President Clinton, the Democratic Leadership Council wing, New Dems, Conservative Dems and the White House spokespersons.
They urge passing it flaws and all as it is our last chance to get health care reform; the flaws can be tweaked later.
Even one of the major stumbling blockers Senator Mary Landrieu (D, LA), who opposed health care reform and received $300 million for her state from the White House to support the new bill, defended the bill by attacking the public.
She claims that high poll ratings for the public option is simply that "They don't understand they have to pay for it. They think is free."
In other words, the public is stupid and venal.
She could not explain why insurance and pharmaceutical stocks are skyrocketing since the ObamaCare modifications were leaked to the public since she claims the two industries are still battling against health care reform with a war chest of $600 million.
They are not still battling. Both industries have exactly what they want with Obamacare--30 million new mandated clients and no cost controls. Future billions of dollars for $600 million is a really good deal.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D, NV) plans on having a vote Christmas Eve on the bill, but lacks 60 Senators at this point to prevent a filibuster. Lieberman and Nelson are still "no" voters and no Republican will support it.
White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel boasts that all Liberals are on board as they would not dare risk this last chance at health care reform.
If Reid does get the votes to pass the Senate bill, ObamaCare will be sent to the House of Representatives for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D, CA) to meld it into the House bill early next year.
The House bill is thought to be better by Dean, the unions and Progressives.
At this point, Pelosi is the only person who can get an acceptable health care bill passed.
She has also put the President on notice that he will have to "convince" her to support his requests for money to pay for the Afghanistan war surge.
All Democrats are relying on Pelosi to get their programs through and Progressives/Liberals hope she will exact a price on their behalf.
Fortunately, her political skills are growing and may match those of the sorely-needed late Speaker and President Lyndon Baines Johnson.
The honeymoon is over for President Obama.
Susan Trevelyan-Syke is an internationally acclaimed journalist and the publisher of Susan's Views and Racing International.
March 6, 2015
SUDDENLY IT reminded me of something.