Thursday, January 20, 2011

House Votes to Repeal Obamacare

The new members of the House of Representatives and Republicans voted Wednesday to repeal Obamacare. This was a big campaign pledge and the first real test of spinal fortitude of the newly GOP controlled House. Three Democrats voted with them.

Mission accomplished.

Much drama was heard on the House floor during the debate. As though auditioning for a plum part in a Broadway play, members raised voices and swore that the world was coming to an end if the vote proceeded.

Rep Sheila Jackson-Lee performed as per usual. She embarrassed every thinking individual in your nation's fourth largest city (Houston) by telling a television show host that an elderly woman in the city would have been denied medical care without passage of Obamacare. The woman was covered by Medicare, but never mind the facts. Sheila had a story to tell and was determined to carry it through, despite the show host dismembering the story quite easily. Wait, in this new era of civility in political rhetoric, is the word 'dismember' allowed?

Sheila Jackson-Lee declared that GOP politicians causing all this brouhaha simply are ignorant. They are ignorant because they haven't read the bill that was passed, she said. Fortunately the television host correctly pointed out that Democrats had not read the bill, either. Sheila tried to recover her dignity after that whopper of a slander by saying she wants to work in a bi-partisan way to reform health care.

Touching, really. Bless her heart.

We all remember the nonsensical claims about this hideous legislation. We are now well aware that it was all smoke and mirrors.

Moreover, the fight against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, of which this week's vote is but the opening round, once again focuses public attention on the law's flaws. Virtually every claim the Obama administration has made on its behalf is turning out to be untrue. (Recall "If you like your current [health-care] plan, you will be able to keep it.") Or it wasn't credible to start with, such as the claim by the Office of Management and Budget that the bill will cut the deficit. A new ABC News/Washington Post poll this week showed that 62% see it as increasing the deficit, 54% think it'll hurt the economy, and 46% think the law will cost jobs. When Republicans have winning arguments, they should keep pressing them.

A popular talking point among those who oppose the repeal of Obamacare is that it is all political theatre; it is just playing to the conservative base. True, many newly elected conservative politicians supported by the Tea Party activists ran on this issue. But, the fact is, this vote on repeal was pledged by most running on Republican tickets and this is a pledge fulfilled. It's fairly simple to understand. It is also about standing up for core principles.

The House of Representatives acted wisely last night. Now the debate opens again. It’s a national debate we need to have, and we need to have it now. Don’t listen to those who want to stifle this debate, or close this controversy. There’s nothing uncivil about standing up for your freedoms. This is no time for summer soldiers and sunshine patriots.

Though Democrats are fond of declaring a debate over, that no new arguments can be made, when they are ready to move forward with legislation, this new House of Representatives is beginning anew on the health care reform debate. That is a good thing. There are many points of reform on which both sides can agree. What conservatives cannot agree to is a massive takeover of 1/6 of our national economy loaded down with layers of unnecessary regulation and red tape that no one wants or needs. The medical community is not happy. Insurance companies are not happy. Patients are not happy. Employers are not happy. The only person happy was Barack Obama for the passage of his legacy building legislation. His narcissistic arrogance is not in our country's best interests.

More than half of the country's states have joined in a lawsuit to opt out of the state mandates of Obamacare.

Republicans across the country campaigned on repeal last year, and yesterday's vote showed refreshing respect for the often invoked, rarely consulted American people. Meanwhile, six additional states have asked to join the momentous constitutional challenge to ObamaCare in Florida, bringing the total to 26, plus Virginia's separate suit. A majority of states resisting this mandate is another "symbolic" threshold

Symbols are important. Team Obama and the Democrats know this as well as anyone. Remember the use of the faux presidential seal as the "president-elect" seal after the Nov 2008 election as Obama began to make speeches before the inauguration?


No comments: