With Nancy Pelosi’s House bill having passed on November 7 by a vote of 220 to 215 with only one Republican in support, we are all now waiting with bated breath to see what will happen to Sen. Harry Reid’s 2,074-page bill, which was introduced on November 18 at a cost estimated by the CBO to be about $849 billion over 10 years. It is expected that the cloture vote will take place on Saturday evening. Senator Reid needs 60 votes from senators to proceed with the debate on the bill. I am not sure if he has the votes or not.
However, it is very clear that the president, Speaker Pelosi, and Senator Reid want to pass a bill in early 2010 at the latest. Whatever the final bill looks like, it is going to cost much more than $1 trillion and will result in increased taxes for all Americans. Ultimately, we will all face rationed care and long waiting lists like those found in Canada, where the government is the virtual sole provider of health care.
What is astounding is that these liberal politicians are not listening to the American people. Polls show that about 82 percent of Americans like their health care and 56 percent do not favor the plans released from both houses.
The executive committees of the AMA and AARP both endorsed the House bill, which includes a public option, a new tax on the wealthy, controls on insurance companies, and individual and employer mandates. The members of these organizations did not have an opportunity to vote on the endorsements. We are now seeing many doctors protesting the move by quitting the AMA, and several thousand seniors have turned in their AARP membership cards.
Americans need to continue being loud and clear in articulating to their members of Congress their displeasure with the pending plans to take over the $2.3 trillion health-care industry. The president’s book may be entitled The Audacity of Hope, but his health-care plan amounts to “the audacity of politicians” who do not want to follow the wishes of their constituents.