Posts Tagged 'health care'

RCP: We’re Gonna Lie to You for More Clicks

The headline on a RealClearPolitics video from today:

Obama: Legalize illegals to get them health care

Wait, what?

And the pull-quotes from said video (which, oddly, the RCP staff pulled from a Washington Times article rather than from the video that’s being hosted on their own site. Yeah, I’m not qualified to work for you guys.):

“Even though I do not believe we can extend coverage to those who are here illegally, I also don’t simply believe we can simply ignore the fact that our immigration system is broken,” Mr. Obama said Wednesday evening in a speech to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. “That’s why I strongly support making sure folks who are here legally have access to affordable, quality health insurance under this plan, just like everybody else.

“If anything, this debate underscores the necessity of passing comprehensive immigration reform and resolving the issue of 12 million undocumented people living and working in this country once and for all.”

Does RCP honestly think that referencing immigration reform in a speech to Latinos is equivalent to saying, “let’s legalize illegals and give them health care?” Or have the Drudges of the world just blurred the lines so much that otherwise respectable outlets will stoop that low for a sweet headline?

Just because you’re quoting the Wash Times doesn’t mean you have to act like them.

Suite101 Article: “Should Polls Matter…?”

After much procrastinating, I finally wrote my first article for Suite101. Their formatting kind of annoys me — namely putting my lede in a little yellow box — but it’s a good way to get some exposure and clips.

Here’s a snippet, check it out…

Were one creating a Platonic Republic, one might even divvy up legislative responsibility according to expertise: for instance, assigning the teacher-turned-representative from Utah to deal with education and education alone.

The realities of this republic, however, afford neither the luxury of specialization nor, even, representation in the sense of a senator making his or her own decisions with the constituency’s blessing. The United States doesn’t work that way: a vote in November isn’t understood to be a blank check for the person elected. Electoral pressures make representation less a mandate to vote on the electorate’s behalf than an appointment to vote as the public demands, lest they be replaced in the future.

BaucusCare Criticisms

Today, Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) pulled back the curtains on Baucus-care, the definitive Gang of Six Finance Committee health care opus magnum we’ve been hearing so much about.

For his trouble, Baucus has been teared into by just about everyone. Progressives hate it, chiefly because it scrapped the public option, and even the trigger compromise, in favor of non-profit private health insurance cooperatives. Conservatives hate it because it costs a bunch, doesn’t do much to make insurance more affordable for those who already have it, includes an individual mandate that carries a hefty (up to $3,800 a year for a household) fine, and cuts nearly $500 billion from Medicare¹.

Though the plan was released today, The New York Times already assembled a bunch of really smart people to dissect it.

Here’s some snippets of the more interesting critiques.

Continue reading ‘BaucusCare Criticisms’

What Health Care Debate?

Economist CoverNate Silver has a post up at FiveThirtyEight grading the Democrats efforts to learn from the mistakes of Clinton-care in selling a health plan. Spoiler alert: he gives out a lot of Fs.

Here’s the CliffsNotes of the CliffsNotes version (emphasis his):

Until the Democrats have a plan, they are unlikely to gain ground with the public on health care reform.

If some iteration of health care reform doesn’t pass in 2009, that will be the reason why. Because while it wasn’t unexpected to see a number of competing versions floating around the House and Senate — there is, after all, the bipartisan crowd to appeal to, not to mention moderate Democrats — you’d think that by now we’d have a front-runner of sorts, in the form of either a bill or at least a consensus on major elements.

Continue reading ‘What Health Care Debate?’

Health Care Reform and the Great Reconciliation Hoax

We’ve learned two things over the past few weeks, as health care proposals have flitted their way through House and Senate committees.

First, the powers that be — Congressional Dems, not necessarily the president — don’t have a whole lot of good ideas for either cost-cutting or revenue-raising to make this whole thing work.

Second, barring new developments, those not-so-good ideas aren’t going to have an easy time finding votes, filibuster-proof majority be damned.

There are any number of reasons for why this is. Counting moderate Democrats squeamish about government-run health care and the questionable health of Democratic Sens. Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd, the supermajority party could run close to ten votes shy of the 60 needed to squelch a filibuster. Realistically, many of those moderate Dems would probably toe the party line when push came to shove. But Arlen Specter would still be a big question mark, and the Kennedy/Byrd votes are, of course, not a given.

This leaves Democrats with a few options. One is to head back to the drawing board and get those nasty CBO numbers under wraps so as to appeal to moderates. Another is to sign on to one of any number of the bi-partisan alternatives floating around. And another, theoretically, is to utilize the reconciliation rule.

Continue reading ‘Health Care Reform and the Great Reconciliation Hoax’


About the Author

Brian Eason is a University of Missouri graduate with bachelor degrees in Journalism and Political Science. He has covered Congressional elections and local government for the Columbia Missourian and worked as a general assignment reporter for the State Journal-Register in Springfield, IL. Brian has also had articles published in Roll Call.