At most public gatherings focused on President Barack Obama's healthcare reform proposals, Americans have expressed their strong feelings in a peaceful and civil manner. However, on August 6, town hall meetings in Tampa, Florida, and St. Louis, Missouri, got out of hand and led to several arrests. Fox News reported on August 7 that police intervened to restore order, and St. Louis officers made six arrests, including some for assault.
With Congress on recess, America is momentarily in the eye of President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform storm. Now is the perfect time to get a second opinion to the president’s diagnosis, and who better to give one than a real doctor: Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas).
Associated Press reported on August 5 that “health care legislation before Congress would allow a new government-sponsored insurance plan to cover abortions, a decision that would affect millions of women and recast federal policy on the divisive issue.” Forces on both sides of the debate are gearing up for a renewed battle once Congress returns from its recess.
Karen Ignagni, president of America’s Health Insurance Plans, told reporters during an August 4 conference call that critics of private health insurance providers are engaged in a campaign to “demonize health plans.” Ignagni called this is “a major step back” for healthcare reform efforts, the Washington Post reported that same day.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee voted 31-28 on August 31 to approve its version of healthcare reform. “This historic step moves us closer to health insurance reform than we have ever been before,” President Obama claimed.
The Huffington Post reported on July 29 that Dr. David Scheiner, a physician who has treated Barack Obama for more than 20 years, thinks that the president’s healthcare reform efforts are doomed to fail. “I look at his program and I can't see how it's going to work,” the 70-year-old Chicago doctor told the Post.
Defense Department officials, in collaboration with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), are considering a proposal whose stated purpose is to assist civilian authorities in the event of a “significant outbreak” of the H1N1 flu virus this fall; H1N1 is otherwise known as swine flu.