Nobody wants to disappoint President Obama on the eve of the holiday season, so all the stops are going to be removed in order to deliver a comprehensive healthcare bill to his desk by Christmas. White House Budget Director Peter Orszag reckons that procedural and political obstacles notwithstanding, a bill creating a new system of national healthcare will be ready for President Obama’s signature before the end of the year.
Anxious to find a revenue source rich enough to fund the proposed government-supported healthcare behemoth, Senate Democrats are considering dipping their buckets into a familiar well — the pockets of the “wealthy.” According to aides familiar with Senate deliberations, Senator Harry Reid and others are prepared to raise Medicare payroll taxes from 1.45 percent to 1.5 percent in order to meet the substantial fiscal demands of the overhaul. Presently, the Medicare tax amounts to 2.9 percent of wages, with half contributed by the employer and the other half paid by the employee.
Have you ever gone to your doctor for a prescription to clear up a bad cold? The evidence is that antibiotics do not work against colds and flu, which are caused by viruses — not bacteria. And routine prescriptions may be causing a health crisis.
With a new bag of political capital burning a hole in his pocket, President Obama pressed his nose against the window and wondered if that most wondrous of all gifts, Senate passage of healthcare legislation, could really be his by Christmas.