Tag Archives: Chuck Schumer

Public Option Punked? And By Whom?

So the Senate Finance Committee decided to vote no on two proposals that would have put a public option in their versions of a healthcare reform bill. Both proposals, one by Sen. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia and the other, from Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, went down to defeat because of the treachery of a total of five Democrats.

Does this mean the public option is dead?

Nope. It just means there are a majority of lawmakers on the Finance Committee prefer to look out for themselves instead of the American people. The Republican rationale drips with hypocrisy. These people have taken “government can’t do anything right” as their personal mantra. Yet why do they oppose the public option? Because they’re deathly afraid government will do healthcare right, and put some of their buddies in the health insurance business out looking for other work.

And some of them should be. I’m talking about those who won’t insure people with pre-existing conditions, those who drop people the minute they get sick, those who raise rates to unconscionable levels for no reason other than to rake in big bucks. Some of those bucks they turn around and spend on the same elected officials who would have us believe their votes are about principle.

For the record, the Democratic punks of the Senate Finance Committee include Senators Max Baucus (committee chair), Kent Conrad, Blanche Lincoln, Bill Nelson, and Thomas Carper. Each will say they have legit reasons for opposing a public option. It’s nonsense, pure and simple.

So, what’s next?

President Barack Obama, that’s what!

He says he supports a public option, but as yet he hasn’t insisted on it.

Now is the time, Mr. President. Time to play hardball, time to stand up for the people who elected you. It’s time to tell the punks you won’t sign any healthcare reform bill that crosses your desk without a public option. If you can tell a sitting Democratic Governor of New York to drop out of a race that’s a year away, you can do this.

It ought to be a piece of cake.

Healthcare reform without a public option is no reform at all. That’s why the Republicans are making it their last stand. They don’t want real competition for their friends in the healthcare industry. The issue here really isn’t them, but what the “good Democrats” in Congress and at the White House are prepared to do.  Is Harry Reid ready to use reconciliation to get this thing done?

And will the House eventually hammer out a bill with a public option that can win a majority?

You tell me. Is the public option still alive?

http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/digg_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/reddit_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/stumbleupon_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/delicious_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/google_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/myspace_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/facebook_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/yahoobuzz_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/twitter_48.png
Did you like this? If so, please bookmark it,
tell a friend
about it.

Guns are Good? Concealed Weapons Across State Lines- You're Kidding, Right?

Apparently not.

There’s an amendment to a Senate defense planning bill that would allow people licensed to carry concealed weapons in one state to carry them into others. The architect of this foolishness is Sen. John Thune, Republican of South Dakota.

The defense bill is scheduled to be voted on Wednesday. Thune argues the amendment would have the effect of reducing crime.

There are 21 co-sponsors, meaning just over one fifth of the Upper House agrees with him.

To people living in urban areas, the meaning of this amendment should be clear. Gun rights advocates are pressing their agenda at the expense of innocent men, woman and children who will die if it passes. Thune and his NRA- financed cronies use the same tired argument that the amendment will not open the door to more handgun violence. They don’t say what’s to stop a person bent on revenge, for example, from crossing state lines, buying a gun where state laws are lax, coming back into their home state, and using it.

Then there’s the question of why this amendment is part of a defense bill in the first place. Yeah, I know Congress does this all the time, that is, insert amendments having little to do with the actual legislation in an effort to either sneak it by or kill the bill. Whatever the reason, cooler heads in the Senate need to defeat this amendment once and for all. Congressional Republicans think they smell blood. They think there are certain issues they can press or beat down, depending on how much damage it will do to President Obama.

Health care reform is one. This guns across state lines amendment is another. Make no  mistake. This plays into the fears that have been expressed  since Obama became president that he would “take everyone’s guns away”. Maybe that explains why the White House hasn’t said too much about it, at least not yet. Senators representing states with tough gun control laws, like Lautenberg of New Jersey and Schumer of New York are speaking out. Lautenberg correctly pointed out that this is on one level a state’s rights issue.

President Obama threatened to veto this same defense bill in its entirety if spending for F-22 fighter jets were included.

The Senate blinked and voted to strip the spending. He needs to do the same thing with this bone to the gun lobby. And the senators who are pushing the amendment ought to explain to police officers in their home states how and why they would sponsor a piece of legislation that puts their lives in jeopardy. Don’t think it does? Ask a cop.

So, in the end, will this amendment to let people carry concealed weapons across state lines pass or fail? You tell me.

http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/digg_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/reddit_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/stumbleupon_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/delicious_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/google_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/myspace_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/facebook_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/yahoobuzz_48.png http://www.markrileymedia.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/twitter_48.png
Did you like this? If so, please bookmark it,
tell a friend
about it.