Posts Tagged 'Pelosi'

A Fluke? Or A Movement?

In case you have been living under a rock, Sandra Fluke is the college student attending Georgetown University who testified before Congress that her birth control costs $3,000 a year and the only way she can get birth control is if Congress allows the President to force religious institutions (like Georgetown) to pay for it, which they then did.  Rush Limbaugh got himself into some trouble when he used a two naughty words to describe someone who wants others to pay for her to have sex.  Judging by family friendly ABC’s new show GCB (originally titled Good Christian Bitches), if only Rush had called Fluke an SP, he would have been ok.

The left wants us to see Fluke like this:

She is a very young, very poor college student who perhaps has acne or cysts on her ovaries that only birth control can fix.  However, Republicans are voting to make Georgetown revoke her rights to buy birth control because every sperm is precious.  In the end, perhaps she wrote a letter to her senator and her senator actually read it, but somehow Fluke came in contact with Democrats in Washington DC who found her story so compelling that they tried to have her testify before Congress, but Republicans hate women and wanted only men testifying so they said no.

In actual fact, Sandra Fluke is a 30 year old law student who can afford $50,000 a year for law school, but can’t seem to find her way into Target or Wal Mart where birth control is $9 a month.  She wants to force her Catholic college and all Americans to pay so that she can have as much consequence-free sex as she can fit between classes.  She also is not random.  Fluke has been an activist promoting the idea of forcing others to pay for birth control and morning after abortion pills.  In fact, she was the president of Law Students for Reproductive Justice.  It’s amazing to me that no one blinks at the fact that this seemingly random student somehow ended up as the star witness for the Democrats, even though Pelosi’s office can’t seem to confirm or deny if the two had ever talked previously.  In fact, Democrats pulled their official witness in order to put Fluke in front of the cameras with her false sob story.  The last minute switcheroo violated policy which is the real reason she wasn’t allowed to testify by those mean old women-hating Republicans.

By the way, which is more offensive?  Rush using naughty words to describe her?  Or Obama giving Christian hospitals, colleges, orphanages, churches and other religious institutions the choice of either providing contraception AND morning after abortion pills or shutting their doors?  Even more offensive is Obama’s hardline on religious institutions while he simultaneously cuts military health benefits.

This brings us to the scary question.  What was Fluke doing at a Jesuit-run Catholic university in the first place?  Doesn’t she know the Catholic church’s teachings on contraception?  Actually, she does and that is why she went there.  Fluke reviewed the Georgetown student insurance policies and enrolled in order to change them.  As a liberal activist, she infiltrated Georgetown in order to use the hand of government to overturn their first amendment rights and force her personal, secular ideologies on them.

This line of attack should scare any religious institution.  It’s one thing when liberals are attacking religion from the outside, like ABC’s new anti-Christian show.  I wouldn’t infringe on people’s freedom of speech and I can control my own remote (imagine that).  But this idea that liberal activists are going to be infiltrating religious institutions in order to impose their secular beliefs on the rest of us should be far more alarming than any naughty words used by an entertainer. Should Christian schools start screening students to make sure they are not liberal plants?

I went to a Christian college for two years.  They taught creation.  They would never pay for morning after pill abortions and actually had rules against pre-marriage intercourse.  They had rules against drugs, homosexuality, drinking, and even foul language.  But it was ok.  We knew that when we went there.  I made a personal choice to go there and live under those rules for two years.  That is something people can do in a free society.  This freedom is the core target of the Fluke-style infiltration assault on Christianity.

This is pretty serious stuff.  The Left has a lot to answer for.  Was Fluke a plant?  If so, it is Fluke and Pelosi who should be apologizing to the country for this blatant fraud and attempt to steal our first amendment rights.

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Trickle up has not worked

Considering the last time trickle down was tried was 2003 and it resulted in a record number of quarters of economic growth, job growth, increased tax revenues, and low unemployment, I really don’t see how people can argue that trickle down doesn’t work.

On the other hand, we have been trying trickle up since 2007.  We raised the minimum wage, we reduced requirements for poor people to get loans, we handed out stimulus checks with AGI limits, we poured a trillion dollars into shovel ready jobs for middle class and union workers (that Obama lied about, and has since admitted that those jobs never existed in the first place), we passed healthcare legislation that taxes the healthcare industry and insurance companies and gives breaks to tiny companies who can’t afford to pay their employees a living wage, and we had the government buy and steal ownership in failed companies.  No aspect of trickle up has worked.

We have a record number of Americans on food stamps.  We extended unemployment benefits until it became a type of unregulated welfare.  We had cash for clunkers.  We had the making work pay tax credit.  We made credit for poor people and failing businesses even easier to come by.  We gave tax credits for hiring unemployed people and all the people the minimum wage squeezed out of the market.  But poor people with subsidized incomes don’t hire people.  Employers and companies do.  And not just failing companies with subsidized loose credit; companies that are successful and are growing hire people.

What have we gotten from trickle up?  When Pelosi gave her inaugural speech as Speaker of the House, she promised no new deficit spending.  Since then US debt has increased by $5 trillion dollars.  The entire 8 years of George W. Bush’s Presidency saw our debt increase by less than that, even with 9/11, the tech bubble, two wars, and two years of Pelosi/Reid. Companies are getting ready to drop insurance coverage as rates continue to spiral out of control and Obama’s penalty taxes become far cheaper than Obama’s healthcare taxes. Official unemployment (those still looking) is steady at 9.5% while real unemployment is around 17%.  Tax revenues have fallen, wages have fallen, and the only economic recovery we have in the stock market is 2/3rds Fed injections as the government has continued to buy bad debt-backed securities.

The scariest thing about the left today is that they think the Obama/Pelosi/Reid economic plan of trickle up worked.

The Blindside?

Nancy Pelosi heard that the American people want a no-vote on Obamacare, but I think she misunderstood.  Instead, she is giving us no vote on Obamacare.

But wait, you ask.  How is that constitutional?  Don’t the House and Senate have to pass a bill before the President can sign it into law?  Yes.  So how is Pelosi going to pass the Senate bill without forcing her Democrats to go on the record and vote for it?

What has become known as the Slaughter Solution was not originally designed to be a devious tactic or to push bills through that the party leadership wants but the American people don’t.  Originally it was designed as a time saver.  The normal process is that the House writes a bill and passes it, the Senate writes their own version and passes it, then they get together and work out their differences.  After that the House and Senate put together identical bills based on their conferences and then each pass it again.  The Slaughter Solution allowed the House to avoid writing and passing a whole new bill by writing a mix of amendments to the Senate bill and then passing it.  Then the Senate passes the House amendments.  That way, the House can say the original Senate bill was “deemed to have passed” by passing the amendment package.

Confused?  That is what Pelosi is counting on.  Pelosi is counting on this because confusion on the Slaughter Solution is the key to her strategy.  Discounting the vigilance of the American people, Pelosi’s Slaughter play is pure genius.  And it’s not about figuring out how to pass Obamacare without voting on it.

What Pelosi is doing with the Slaughter Solution is giving her Democrats cover to vote for an amendment package that the Senate either cannot or will not pass with reconciliation.  While Stupak might see the ruse and refuse to vote for this, it gives the phony pro-life bluedogs exactly the excuse they have been looking for to get back in the Left’s good graces.

Here is how it will go down.  The bluedogs and “conservative” Democrats will announce that they are undecided on the Senate version of Obamacare.  They will tell their conservative voters that they disapprove of the kickbacks.  They will tell their union bosses that they disapprove of the Cadillac tax on high priced insurance polices.  They will tell the pro-life majority in our country that they would never approve of taxpayer funding for abortion.  And to fix that, they will vote for Pelosi’s reconciliation amendment package.

Pelosi’s amendment package will repeal Ben Nelson’s kickback, it will prohibit any federal funding for abortion and therefore any insurance funding for abortion, it will remove taxes on high price insurance plans, and it will never be passed by the Senate.  The Senate cannot use reconciliation to pass a bill with heavy social implications such as banning insurance coverage for abortion.  The Senate also cannot use reconciliation to pass a bill that increases the deficit by cutting unpopular taxes.  And of course, the Senate cannot pull together the necessary votes if the bill does not include the bribes it took to get Senators like Landrieu and Nelson on board.

Think about it.  If the Senate could pass the House amendments through reconciliation or any other means, why don’t they just pass the House bill that is already written?  Why amend the Senate bill to look like the House bill and then just pass the amendments?  Why would the Senate pass a package containing everything they specifically left out of their bill?

So when the House passes Obamacare with the reconciliation package, and the Senate votes down the reconciliation package, the Senate bill will go to Obama to be signed into law in it’s current form.  Abortion will be funded, Senators will get their kickbacks, House Democrats can claim they took a stand against abortion funding and for the unions, and Obama can finally claim the second major policy victory of his Presidency (the stimulus pork bill being the first).

But it gets even better.  Harry Reid may decide not to pass the House amendment package through reconciliation.  After all, the point is not to pass the House changes.  Instead of simply discarding the House amendments and sending the bill as is to the President, Reid may go ahead and push for a normal supermajority vote on the House reconciliation plan.  That way Senate Republicans can either give Democrats bi-partisan support of Obamacare by voting for the Pelosi reconciliation package with it’s union favors and higher spending, or they can give Democrats bi-partisan support in voting down the Stupak’s abortion amendment and repeal of the Democrat kickbacks.  The Democrats could actually turn the split in their own party into a split in the Republican party; something they haven’t succeeded at yet in this debate.

In the end, for the ignorant and uninformed voting majority of Americans, this strategy is a guaranteed success.  The only thing that can stop Pelosi, Reid and Obama now is vigilance and a strong statement from the American people that we know what they are up to.  So it comes down to this: if you are not against it, you are for it.  Call your Congressman and ask them for a definitive stance on Obamacare.  If they say they are not sure, undecided, or would only support it with the reconciliation amendments, call them on it.  And a vote for Pelosi’s reconciliation package, no matter how good it sounds, is nothing more than a vote for the Senate version of Obamacare.

Republicans have been played into a corner.  Only the American people can stop Obamacare now.

Stupid Stupid Stupak

We thought Obama’s healthcare takeover was dead.  We may be wrong.

One thing is for sure, we probably aren’t going to see a new bill.  In order to ditch the current junk bill and prepare a new bill, the House and Senate would have to have some potential of actually agreeing with one another.  With the pro-life Democrats in the House and not enough Senators willing to break their rules and use reconciliation to pass social policy, a new bill would be almost as likely than an actual bi-partisan compromise.

But Obama doesn’t need a new bill.  All he needs is for the House to pass the bill that the Senate passed before Brown was elected in Massachusetts.  There’s only one problem, and I highlighted this back in November: the Senate bill funds abortion and the House doesn’t want that.

Whereas the Senate bill funds abortion, the House bill makes it so that abortion cannot be covered by insurance companies.  That is just one of the costs of government run insurance.  When the people pay for your healthcare, the people can decide what healthcare you can get.  In an act of uncharacteristic heroism, Representative Bart Stupak ensured that the House bill had an amendment that does not allow the government to buy our insurance if that insurance covers abortion.  It was the only way Pelosi could get enough votes to pass their version.  Since the government will soon fund every insurance company, companies would no longer be allowed to insure abortions.  It would almost make passing the bill worth it.

Stupak had been the last line of defense against the House passing the Senate bill, but now he is talking about making a deal.  What would a Democrat, willing to put his career on the line to protect the unborn, sell his soul for?  In this case, nothing.  Stupak instead is about to fall for the oldest trick in the book.

It’s like in the movies when the evil interrogator says “Tell me what I want to know and I’ll let you go free!”  We all know what’s really going to happen.  They can’t make changes to the Senate bill without the Senate having to pass it again, which won’t happen.  What they can do is tell Stupak that if he votes for the Senate bill, they will pass a “fix” bill with his amendment.  Obama has already been talking about passing a second fix bill because face it, he knows as well as we do that the current bill is crap.  Even Steny Hoyer could only muster a “better than nothing” when describing the current healthcare bill.  Stupak may be close to making this deal.  He will vote for the Senate bill with nothing more than a promise from Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid that the Democrat leadership will write, pass and get a Presidential signature on a bill that says no government funded insurance plan can cover abortion.  Come on Stupak, think about it.

If the Democrat party with complete control over both houses of Congress cannot pass their own healthcare reform bill, there is no way they will pass a second bill placing any sort of limits on abortion.  If he lets this bill pass, it will be Stupak surrounded by millions of taxpayer funded aborted babies, with Stupak saying, “But you promised nobody would get hurt!”

Bags Fly Free

It’s pretty sad when the two biggest tax cheats in our country, not currently in jail, are the men responsible for writing and implementing our tax laws.  Geithner, of course, is the Treasury Secretary who underreported thousands of dollars in unemployment taxes to the US Treasury before he became the boss there.  Charlie Rangel, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, is responsible for helping to write the taxes that the rest of us Americans have to pay.  Still, he has cheated with NY rental properties and overseas tax shelters.

Now Rangel is in even deeper trouble for taking corporate paid vacations to the Bahamas, in violation of House rules.  Apparently he didn’t bother to question when he was given free tickets and a free vacation.  The country is holding our collective breath to see if Pelosi will uphold her promise of the most open and ethical congress in history.

No, not really.  I don’t think anyone expects Pelosi to tell Rangel to step down.  Rangel was told by staffers three times that special interests were paying for his vacations.  But still he insists he had no idea who was sending him to the Bahamas on free vacations.  Come on.  But no one expects Pelosi, who likes to fly her friends and family around the country in a military jet at taxpayer cost, to take a stand against an unethical Democrat for the first time in her career.

Americans have known about Democrat loose ethics for a long time.  House Minority Leader John Boehner wrote a letter to Pelosi back in September of 2008 asking for Rangel’s resignation after it was discovered that Rangel was hiding $75,000 worth of taxable income in his Caribbean tax shelter, and using his rent-controlled New York property as a campaign office illegally.  Many of us found it sadly ironic since two years before the Pelosi congress was ushered in when she was able to convince the majority of Americans that Foley was part of a culture of corruption while characters like William Jefferson were not.

The worse part about this congress is that things like vote-buying, bribes and favors are now considered to be just the way business is done in Washington.  Nobody inside the beltway batted an eye at the Louisiana purchase or Ben Nelson buyout (two instances where votes for Obamacare were purchased with legislative favors).  Many don’t even know that Rangel is also in hot water for keeping tax loopholes on the books for Nabors Industries in exchange for donations to one of his private charities.

We rid our government of unethical Republicans back in 2006.  In 2010 we have a chance to clean out the Democrat party.  Who knows, maybe one of these times politicians will get the hint.

Even In Nevada, Sometimes The House Deals You All Aces

Harry Reid is probably pretty proud of himself tonight.  And if Republicans behave as usual, he has good reason to be.  After working and dealing with Republicans to come up with a bi-partisan jobs bill filled with tax cuts and unrelated pork programs, Reid has thrown the bill in the trash and drafted a new copy with just the tax cuts and infrastructure spending.  The cost of his new bill is less then half of the old one.  As AP put it, he has all but dared the Republicans to vote against the new bill.

This isn’t a bad move for Reid.  If Republicans vote for it, he is already in a position to call the bill a victory for himself and the Obama administration.  He can put “Taming the Republicans in a Tea Party Era” on his resume.  If the Republicans vote against it, Reid can claim he offered them a bill with tax cuts, no pork and infrastructure spending, but Republicans were so partisan that they wouldn’t go for it.  Nevermind that Reid was the one who scrapped the bi-partisan deal they had already arrived at.

Here is why the Republicans should play the hand he dealt them.  The first inclination is going to be to attack Reid for throwing away their bi-partisan agreement.  But what Reid stripped out of the bill was unrelated items and pork spending that we can’t afford anyway.  He also stripped out popular Bush tax cuts and the Patriot Act which Republicans need to highlight separately instead of allowing Dems to sneak them in to other bills.  What Reid has given them is not a perfect bill, but it is far better than whatever the socialist Democrat’s plan B might be.  In other words, if Republicans reject this, the next bill will be more like the failed Stimulus bill.  Many Republicans were calling for a payroll tax holiday over the Stimulus bill originally.

My advice to Republicans is to highlight that Democrats are now seeking tax cuts to stimulate the economy, an idea typically owned by the Right.  Then they need to take the bill back to Harry Reid with a list of Stimulus pork that they can cut to pay for it.  After all, aren’t we in the era of Paygo?  If the Republicans play their hand right, we can see who is really bluffing.  I’ll tell you right now, Pelosi and her House have already folded on Reid’s game.

Two Paths: Yes, The Republicans Have A Bill

The Republican Party has put together an alternative to Pelosi/Obamacare, and it has been scored by the CBO.  You can get all the details here. As Democrats argue that Republicans are the “do nothing” party who is only out to oppose any and all reforms, I thought it might be nice to look at the Republican plan and dispel such a myth.

This bill that the Republicans put together doesn’t have a shot at passing.  The “do nothing” Democrats already have their bill.  They don’t have enough votes in their own party to pass it yet, but they are working overtime to put together enough bribe money from your tax dollars to get those votes.  If you are wondering what I mean by that, see any of my earlier posts about pork and earmarks.  See especially, Obama’s Stimulus plan.

However, even though it doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell, here is a quick breakdown of what might have been, and what possibly could be after 2010:

Cost:

Pelosi/Obamacare is set to run us about $1.3 trillion according to the CBO.  The Republican plan?  $61 billion.

Length:

Pelosi/Obamacare is 2,032 pages sofar.  The only reason anyone knows this is because someone looked at the page number on the last page, not because someone has actually read the bill all the way through and counted.  The Republican bill?  219 pages.

Lower Health Insurance Costs:

According to the CBO, not in the Democrat plan.  Through higher taxes on insurers and health providers, the Dem plan will actually increase the cost of insurance premiums.  Then the government will take your own money and give it back to you in the form of controlling subsidies to make you buy insurance.

On the other hand, the Republican bill, according to the CBO, should cut family premiums by up to $5,000 per family and small business premiums by up to 10%.

How about fiscal responsibility?:

Yeah, remember?  That thing everyone wants but no party can seem to achieve?  Pelosi and Obama keep talking about how their plan will cut the deficit.  But that is only because they took $210 billion out of the bill and made it a separate unfunded bill.  By the way, that is about three times the total cost of the Republican bill.  The Democrat bill also increases taxes on Americans, in a recession, by about $750 billion dollars.

According to the CBO, the Republican bill reduces the deficit by $68 billion, cuts government healthcare costs over the long term, and cuts costs immediately without raising taxes.

Will Obamacare make unemployment worse?:

Since 2007 when Democrats took over, unemployment has increased by 5.3% to the current rate of 10.2%.  Will Pelosi/Obamacare help?  Not according to the CBO.  According to the CBO, the Democrat health plan by itself will cause 5.5 million jobs to be lost over the next ten years.  They do this by forcing businesses to buy health insurance or face a new 8% tax based on payroll.  How do you, as a business owner who can’t afford a company policy, avoid this tax?  Simple, cut payrolls.

Republicans on the other hand have no employer mandate and instead allow businesses to pool resources and negotiate lower cost plans from health insurance companies.

Rationing and Death Panels:

Ok, so “death panels” is a drastic and perhaps overly dramatic term.  How about government mandated waiting lists if there are insufficient funds to pay for healthcare costs?  How about a Health Advisory Board to determine what treatments and benefits the government will cover?  How about a Comparison Effectiveness Research Commission that determines which treatments your doctor can use based on what the government thinks is effective and what the government is willing to pay for?  How about a Health Choices Commissioner who gets to decide which doctors and hospitals can participate in government or private plans?  That along with end of life counseling is certainly enough to make the case that the Democrat bill contains rationing.

States’ Rights:

Constitutionally speaking, the Democrat bill is a monster.  While still not allowing people to buy insurance across state lines, the Democrat plan forces states to pay an extra $34 billion, according to the CBO, in unfunded Medicaid costs.  Once again, the entire Republican bill is $61 billion.

Abortion Funding:

Last and most important, the Democrat bill mandates that I pay for abortion with my tax dollars.  The government-run public option will be mandated to cover elective abortions.  The Democrat plan requires that at least one insurance plan in every market cover abortions.  And people who enroll in the government-run plan will be paying for abortions directly through their premiums.

The Republican plan prohibits federal funding for elective abortion and does not mandate abortion coverage.

I don’t suppose it will take Democrats a whole year to finally pass their health insurance bill.  But if it does, maybe we can change the game in 2010 and give the Republican option a shot.


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