Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Obama Healthcare by Hook or by Crook

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According to the New York Times, President Obama has “his back to the wall” concerning the fate of his “signature initiative” and is doing everything in his power to “explain, persuade, and capture” to get the House to pass his healthcare bill. Despite repeated evidence from pollsters that the American people don’t want his healthcare plan, the Obama administration continues its push to take over private healthcare, and turn it into the largest socialization of the country since the Constitution was adopted in 1787.

Pollsters like Rasmussen Reports, Pollster.com, and RealClearPolitics show that more than half of Americans are opposed to the plan.  And some polls are showing that if Obamacare II is passed, it will have a major negative impact on Democrats in November.  

Rep. Parker Griffith (R-Ala.), who switched to the Republican Party last year, said, “It’s all about ego now. It’s no longer about healthcare reform. You have personalities who have bet the farm, bet their reputations, on shoving a health care bill through the Congress. [It’s about] the president’s ego, Nancy Pelosi’s ego. This is about personalities, saving face, and it has very little to do with what’s good for the American people.”

When asked by Byron York whether Pelosi would be willing to give up control of the House, and consequently her present position as Speaker, in order to get healthcare passed, Griffith said, “Oh, yeah. This is a trophy for the speaker, it’s a trophy for several committee chairs, and it’s a trophy for the president.” When asked about the poll numbers, York opines that the Democrats think the polls are wrong, or contradictory, or that most people actually favor the proposed takeover of healthcare. But he adds that Democrats hold that “real leaders don’t govern by following the polls.” They’re just going to do what they know in their hearts is right.  

And if efforts to “explain, persuade, and capture” aren’t sufficient, Democrats can always “Bluster, Bully, and Bribe,” according to Michelle Malkin. Although the current uproar caused by Rep. Eric Massa’s messy exit from the House due to ethics difficulties has received a lot of press recently, Investors.com wrote that Massa is either in “real ethical trouble” or he is “a victim of ‘Chicago-style’ politics.” Either way, “if any of Massa’s claims is true, it speaks volumes about the thuggery of an administration desperately trying to pass its wildly unpopular health care bill.” The reader can see a brief video clip of Massa’s charges here and judge for himself. Massa said that “Mine [was] the deciding vote on the health care bill. And this administration and this House leadership have said, quote-unquote, they will stop at nothing to pass this health care bill. And now [that] they’ve gotten rid of me…it will pass. You [can] connect the dots.”  

Michelle Malkin dismisses the whole Massa matter as a bunch of “cold showers and hot conspiracies”, but, if true, “it confirms everything I’ve been writing about the Obama Culture of Corruption [for] the last two years.”

More traction for claims of bribery is gained by a closer look at the charges being levied at the Obama administration for trying to trade a judicial appointment for a favorable vote. Congressman Jim Matheson (D-Utah) voted against Obamacare I, and was invited to the White House last week for a conversation and a briefing about healthcare by the President. This appeared to be entirely proper, except for the announcement on the very day of that meeting that a long-delayed appointment to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals was for Matheson’s brother, Scott Matheson. As Wes Vernon put it, “That this ‘coincidence’ smells out loud is self-evident.  Either we are witnessing boss-style corruption without the subtlety, or you have a case of a monumental ‘comedy of errors.’” While Scott Matheson’s credentials are impressive, the timing of the announcement begs the question of propriety. So much so that Michelle Bachmann (R-Minn.) has called for an independent investigation into the matter.  

Malkin reminds her readers that “this debacle comes on the heels of damning disclosures about other possible White House bribery.  Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa.) admitted that the Obama administration had offered him a high-ranking position in the administration if he dropped out of the Senate race for now-Democrat Arlen Specter’s Senate seat. And in Colorado, the Denver Post “reported last fall that Deputy White House chief of Staff Jim Messina ‘offered specific suggestions’ for an Obama administrative job to…Democrat Andrew Romanoff if he withdrew his challenge to White House-backed Democrat Sen. Michael Bennet.”    

If Obama is successful in his quest for passage of the health care bill, there is one more step to take: reconciliation. The New York Timesdiscussion of reconciliation puts the matter neatly: “Reconciliation bills cannot be blocked by filibuster in the Senate and need only a simple majority to pass…The White House and Congressional Democrats envision a process by which the Senate uses reconciliation to make changes to the health care bill that was adopted on December 24th, [and then] the House would adopt the Senate-passed bill as well as the reconciliation measure, and send both to Mr. Obama for his signature.”  

Once passed, the triumph of expediency over the rule of law would result not only in the “governmentalization of health care…[but it would] redefine the relationship between the citizen and the state in fundamental ways that make limited government all but impossible,” says Mark Steyn. As Senator Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) has said, “The issue trumps the process.”  

The solution to such thuggery and expediency is what it has always been: Enough American citizens knowledgeable enough to support the Constitution and then actively supporting those running for office who support it as well.  

Photo of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi  at a news conference about health care on Capitol Hill, March 2, 2010: AP Images

 

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