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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Inside Pelosi's Sausage Factory

Neatly outlined in the WSJ article linked above is everything I thought was wrong with the Bush administration and Republican control of Congress. "Never before has the average American been treated to such a live-action view of the sordid politics necessary to push a deeply flawed bill to completion. It was dirty deals, open threats, broken promises and disregard for democracy that pulled ObamaCare to this point, and yesterday the same machinations pushed it across the finish line." Hope and Change? Let's review.

1. The Slaughter Rule, aka Political Cowardice. - A procedural trick to give wavering House Democrats political cover in November's election, abandoned only at the last minute as a result of public outcry and the good sense of Democrats like Stephen Lynch.

2. The Wishing Well. - California Jim Costa's vote bought when administration decides to increase water supplies to thirsty Central Valley farmers in his district. (Costa denies a quid pro quo).

3. Tennessee Two-Step. - Bart Gordon's vote bought in exchange for an extra $100 million in Medicaid money. Just a coincidence?

4. Cornhusker Kickback. - This extra Medicaid money for Sen. Ben Nelson was pulled out of the reconciliation bill, and guess who's threatening to vote against final reconciliation? Ben, Obama giveth, and Obama taketh away.

5. Louisiana Purchase. - Newsweek swears this really isn't a dirty backroom deal, but an additional $300 million in Medicaid for Louisiana, one of the few states that voted against Obama, sure made it easier for Senator Mary Landrieu to support Obamacare. This stays.

6. Gator-Aid. - This deal, cut by Senator Bill Nelson (no relations to Ben), would allow Florida Medicare recipients signed on to Medicare Advantage to stay there, while retirees everywhere else would lose that option. This has been removed in the Final reconciliation. Obama must not like guys named Nelson.

7. Medicaid Money for Everyone! - "Oregon's Pete DeFazio threatened to lead a revolt unless changes were made to Medicare payments to benefit his state. On Saturday Mrs. Pelosi cut a deal to give 17 states additional Medicare money."

8. What About the Unborn? - The President agrees to sign a completely ineffective executive order, banning the use of federal money for abortions, winning the votes of pro-life Dems.

Barack Obama promised change, and he sure has delivered. He's made things worse.


Anonymous said...

Medicare advantage is a privately run, publicly subsidized business that soaks taxpayers billions as a middleman.

Unnecessary, we don't need a multi-million dollar health insurance agent middleman. good riddance!

Anonymous said...

Big question now is, will Dent vote to repeal health care reform for the American people.

Anonymous said...

This bill was always about codifying abortion rights. They currently stand on the very shaky scientific ground of a poorly constructed SCOTUS decision. Medicine has eroded the logic of the trimester arrangements of Roe v. Wade. Remarkable prenatal imaging is steadily changing hearts of young people. With public opinion on abortion turning against them, pro-abortion legislators had to act.

Anonymous said...

Callahan has plenty of time to practice what he's told to say. His current strategy will have served him well. He took some crap from a local blogger. But few will remember in November. Five issues will come and go between now and then. For now, he can't be nailed for either stand on health care.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:25 - if you really think few will remember in November I believe you are greatly mistaken. Remember In November will be a rally cry starting on August/September when the politicians begin their true political stumping... Callahan's choice to say nothing will speak volumes against him....

Anonymous said...

Dent's failure to speak out and condemn the egregious and ugly behavior of his party also speaks volumes about him.

Anonymous said...

"But few will remember in November. Five issues will come and go between now and then."

If Callahan's strategy is to hope that voters forget his positions in November, then hopefully Dent will be re-elected by a landslide.

Anonymous said...

"Dent's failure to speak out and condemn the egregious and ugly behavior of his party also speaks volumes about him."

If I read the post right, this is about how pelosi and her cronies cut backroom deals and abused the process to get a bill passed that most people i know think is terrible. Want to talk about someone speaking out, Callahan actually endorsed the whole package....a day AFTER the vote was completed.

Bernie O'Hare said...

You read the post right. This post is about the process, not the subnstance of the bill. I consider that flawed as well, but there reasonable minds can disagree.

As Tomas Beckett once observed, people who justify chopping down all the trees in the forest to get at the devil, will have nowhere to hide when the devil turns on them.

Anonymous said...

To be clear callahan did not agree to all provisions in the bill.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Is Callahan now running from his own position? There's nothing clear about him at all.

Anonymous said...

"To be clear callahan did not agree to all provisions in the bill."

Hahaha. He supports it, except he doesnt. On another post, someone said that everyone already knew Callahan's positions before the vote, except that Callahan didnt announce his position until a day after the vote. Does the mayor think he would get to vote for specific provisions of a bill, the day after the bill passes???