Posted in Congress, Conservative, Current Events, GOP, Health Care Reform, Health Care Repeal, Healthcare Reform, House of Representatives, News, Politics, Republicans

Futility, Health Care Repeal and Symbolism

How fabulously productive Thursday was on Capitol Hill!

The House spent part of the day reading the Constitution aloud to one another, part of the day dickin’ around and not swearing in two of its new Republican members (Pete Sessions and Mike Fitzpatrick decided to skip the ceremony and were instead at a fund raiser), and the rest of the day taking test votes to see if they have enough support to symbolically repeal the health care bill.

Only in Republican-world can people manage to both read and violate the Constitution in a single day.

They must be tired!

I know the year is young, but if this is any indication of what’s to come, we’re in for a fun ride, folks.

The health care repeal, if passed in the House, truly would only be a symbolic victory for House Repubs.

In other words, it wouldn’t actually result in the repeal of anything at all.

The bill won’t go anywhere beyond the House, as it would never gain enough traction to make it to the Senate floor, where Democrats still hold control.

Even if Senate Republicans could jam the bill down Harry Reid’s throat (and the stars, moons and planets throughout the galaxy somehow find themselves aligned just right, while pigs simultaneously begin flying), and get it passed, Obama would bitch-slap that thing back into Boehner’s wet dreams veto it.

With a quickness.

I get that in an enforceable-law sort of way, this bill is harmless, but still, I find myself scratching my head.

Didn’t the GOP gain control of the House of Representatives in large part by promising to curb all that wasteful spending the Democrats seem to be so addicted to?

Yet they somehow think a symbolic repeal of the health care bill is a responsible thing to do…

… Even as we learn that the price tag for passing this worthless bit of drivel would actually raise the deficit by more than $230 billion over the next 10 years, and add another trillion in national debt in the 20 years following the first 10.

Now look.

I realize the Democrats aren’t exactly known for their sound fiscal policy…

… But last I checked, people were actually getting something out of the hugely expensive decisions the Dems have been making recently.

Yes, “Obamacare” (as the haters say) comes with a high price tag, but once fully implemented, more than 30 million Americans who currently have no health insurance will be covered. Insurance companies will no longer be able to deny people coverage based on pre-existing conditions, so on and so forth. The stimulus package, while not nearly as successful as Obama had hoped, did create jobs, and we are now seeing noticeable drops in unemployment numbers.

In what world does spending $230 billion on a symbolic bill actually make sense? Certainly not in the world I live in, where our nation’s deficit is already out of control, unemployment is still too high, and people can’t make their mortgage payments.

House Republicans say that the gesture is the first step in making good on a promise to the American people to repeal health care legislation.

I can’t help but wonder what happened to their promise of fiscal responsibility? Their promise to reign in the oh-so-rampant wasteful spending in Washington?

From my vantage point, the only promise being fulfilled is that of total futility.

Posted in Barack Obama, C-Haze, Congress, Current Events, Democrats, Health Care Reform, Healthcare Reform, Joe Wilson, News, Politics, Republicans

Joe Wilson Supports Medical Treatment of Illegal Immigrants At Taxpayer Expense

People often ask me why I am so interested in politics. The answer I most often give is that it’s because politicians can be so much fun!

I decided, after Joe Wilson’s now-infamous outburst during President Obama’s address to the joint sessions of Congress, to do a little research on Rep. Wilson himself…

… More specifically, I wanted to learn more about his voting record.

As I’m sure no one will be shocked to read, I have found that Joe Wilson is a complete hypocrite.

I know, I know- who isnt these days?

Wilson’s hypocrisy, however, is in direct relation to his supposed views against those who are not legally in this country receiving government-funded medical treatment.

Given this information, I was surprised to learn a very different bit of data about the South Carolina Representative.

Joe, it seems, actually supports the idea of federal tax dollars being used to pay for the medical treatment of illegal immigrants.

You see, there’s this law called the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003 that contains a provision requiring an annual amount of $250,000 be set aside for the sole purpose of reimbursing hospitals who treat illegal immigrants. The legislation was initially to run from 2003 through 2008, but was recently extended into 2009, with talk of making it permanent.

When this Act came up for a vote in Congress, Joe Wilson voted “Yay”, as in, yes, to pass it.

So… let me get this straight:

Joe Wilson, who is an opponent of the Health Care Legislation in large part due to the fact that he believes the vicious rumors claiming that illegal immigrants will receive free, government-funded health insurance, decides to lose his freakin’ mind, jumping up and shouting “You Lie!” during the portion of Obama’s speech in which Obama is very truthfully debunking that particular myth…

… This same Joe Wilson who, while claiming he is being victimized by the left for his adamant opposition to government-funded health care for those who are not legally in this country…

Voted in support of the use of federal tax dollars to pay for the medical treatment of those very same illegal immigrants.

Huh.

It’s a mouthful, but it’s all true, I can assure you.

Never a dull moment on Capitol Hill!

Posted in Barack Obama, Blogging, C-Haze, Comments, Congress, Current Events, Democrats, Elections, Fox News, Healthcare Reform, House of Representatives, Joe the Plumber, Joe Wilson, News, Politics, President, Republicans, Sarah Palin

Representative Wilson Falsely Claims Obama Lied… Will You Stand With Joe?

Representative Joe Wilson from South Carolina sure did cause a stink Wednesday evening.

Wilson was the guy who famously hollered, “You lie!” in the middle of the President’s speech about health care reform to the Joint Sessions of Congress Wednesday night. Obama was in the process of addressing a pesky falsehood about the health care bill, one stating that should the legislation pass, illegal immigrants will be offered free, government-sponsored health insurance. Mr. Wilson decided he wasn’t going to let the facts deter him, even though this particular myth has already been debunked by just about everybody.

The current legislation, in each and every version that is being debated, states unequivocally that credits for coverage will not be extended to any persons who are not legally residing in this country. According to Politifact’s Bill Adair, the bill (H.R. 3200),  goes to great lengths to make sure that “illegal immigrants do not get the credits for the health care exchange that would allow them to get free care”.

How ironic that in the process of trying to tell the world that President Obama is a liar, Rep. Wilson was, himself, perpetuating one helluva whopper.

Ah, politics at its finest.

The only reason I stop short of calling Joe Wilson a liar is because I am unsure of his motives. Afterall, I have no way of knowing whether he really believes the nonsense he’s spewing. Nor do I know if he’s consciously spreading false claims, caring not the slightest about honesty and decency, all in an effort to simply keep the bill from passing.

I would argue, however, that it doesn’t matter.

The fact remains that one of South Carolina’s elected officials willfully and knowingly openly disrespected the President of the United States during a formal speech.

This was not some informal townhall gathering in local Mayberry, USA. The yahoos who lack the common decency to respect the President when he is speaking were not supposed to be in attendance Wednesday night. That the people who do not know how to temporarily hold their tongues and allow the Leader of the Free World to speak, uninterrupted, have joined the ranks as politicians- Congressional representatives, for God’s sake- is disheartening. I expect them to behave better than this, even as they oppose the subject that is being spoken of.

Representative Wilson certainly has bad manners.

Politicians, pundits, and talk show hosts alike have ample opportunity twenty four hours a day, seven days a week to express their displeasure on anything and everything. Whether that displeasure stems from the recent actions of the President, fellow politicians, celebrities or just some Joe The Plumber type guy they happened to run into one day, there are plenty of appropriate venues in which to express oneself.

This is the age of technology, after all.

Wilson could have taken his grievance public by putting thinking cap on and writing a blog. He could have written an open letter, printed in any number of news publications, to the President to voice his displeasure. He could have called just about anyone over at Fox News and been welcomed on their airwaves and into our living rooms with open arms. He could have called a press conference to discuss his issues. He could have put a scathing statement expressing his displeasure on his website. Or he could have sent out a mass e-mail telling the thousands of folks who are no doubt on his mailing list exactly how he feels.

Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, isn’t that what Twitter and Facebook are for? Those two websites have worked wonders for Sarah Palin, after all.

In fact,  not only could he have done all of these things, he could have done them all simultaneously.

Instead, our esteemed member of Congress, hailing from the great state of South Carolina, chose to make an ass out of himself on national television by rudely interrupting the President in a bizarre outburst that truly accomplished nothing more than making him look unhinged.

He has been forced to apologize- twice now- and while Democrats were predictably outraged by Wilson’s actions, even Republicans have soundly given him the ol’ smack upside the head for using such terrible judgment.

It doesn’t appear that his outburst had any sort of negative effect on the speech itself. In fact, early numbers show that after watching Obama speak Wednesday night, Americans are beginning to change their mind about the health care bill.

While health care support was inching up, the President’s approval ratings were doing the same- the President realized a double digit jump, even as Joe Wilson’s popularity plummeted.

In fact, Wilson’s likely opponent in 2010, Rob Miller, raised an astounding $350,000 for his campaign in less than 24 hours after Mr. Wilson’s unfortunate gaffe.

Stepping neatly into the role of victim, Joe Wilson is claiming that he is being punished for speaking out against the “critical issue of healthcare”. He is begging his supporters to send him money, and “Stand with Joe”.

How sad.

Representative Wilson is not in trouble for speaking his mind. He is in trouble for his appalling lack of manners and respect. He is in trouble for lacking the self-control to keep his temper in check while the President of the United States was speaking. Most importantly, it was his own actions, his own words, his own bad timing that got him into trouble. Had he kept his mouth shut for the short time Obama was speaking, it never would have been necessary for him to apologize, or answer calls for his censure to begin with.

Poor Joe.