Update 12:37 PM - Moving my new updates to a new thread here.
Republicans are wholly owned subsidiary of the insurance industry. That's
what I said yesterday on the House floor.
Today is their big day to prove me wrong, but I'm getting ready for reruns
of the worst show in town.
Republicans will spend today's health care summit ranting and raving. We'll
make concessions, but in the end we won't win a single Republican vote.
It's no surprise that the list of participants for today's bipartisan health
care summit didn't include my name or any other advocate for single-payer
It's too bad we won't get to hear Republicans squeal like they did yesterday
when they asked me to take my comment back.
But I still have a TV and a laptop. Just because we won't be in the room,
doesn't mean that those of us who want real health care reform can't make
our voices heard.
I've said it before: Democrats can't keep negotiating with ourselves while
getting nothing in return.
The President supports the public option. Majorities of both the House and
the Senate support the public option. And a whopping majority of the
American people supports the public option.
That's what we should be doing, and that's the only way we're going to end
up with a plan that provides real competition to insurance companies and
reduces soaring premiums.
But I'm not going to stop fighting and neither can you. I'll be right here
today liveblogging. And don't worry, I'll be sure to call out Republicans
every time they sell out the American people to protect the insurance
I'll be updating regularly, so come back often.
Moving my new updates to a new thread here. Should make it easier to read the comments.
Hey, Mr. President, I have a question to put to the table:
Why do we have an employer-based system that requires busnesses to be benefits managers?
Nearly half of the country has a single payer system. Which one has worked better?
Sorry to change the subject, but isn't this the elephant that wasn't allowed into the room?
I am prepared to rule on who is right about the cost up / cost down argument the Republicans are having with the President. The President is right.
If you dont read Ezra Klein's blog at the Washington Post, you should. Check out his take here.
The President is doing a great job teaching here. His answers are clearly intended to cut through the claptrap of the GOP talking points.
I doubt he wins over the Republican members, but I'm sure the uninitiated will understand the issues better.
I held 16 town hall meetings in my district. I saw the same thing at each. There was a lot of anger directed at the myths and not the facts of the debate.
But where did the myths come from? The answer is that they came from a deliberate campaign by many of the Republicans in that room.
It occurs to me watching this session that we are seeing the limits of the seniority system in Congress.
These senators and House Members are mostly there because the are Chairmen or ranking Republicans on committees. Maybe this would be more fun if some less senior members were invited. I'm not naming names, but can't we think of some?
Sen. Coburn says there is 10% fraud in Medicare and Medicaid. It's worth noting that the bills have proposed anti-fraud initiatives that in part explain why Medicare would be reduced 10% or so.
That didn't stop the GOP and their scaremongers on Fox News from claiming we were stealing from seniors.
As they work out the facts about this disagreement over whether rates would go down under the Senate bill, I wonder if they will explain why the Senate bill is the foundation for this discussion.
The House bill is the better bill. It contains the public option - which would without doubt save consumers and taxpayers money. BTW - We are an hour in and there has yet to be a mention of the public option.
I like Sen. Reid's tone here. Bipartisanship is a means and not an end. If the GOP members are allowed to portray themselves as "partners" in the effort, wihtout challenge, this thing will be a farce.
Sen. Alexander started referring to the "jamming" of health care reform via reconcilliation. This is hypocrisy. Check out Sen. Boxer's examination of the myth that we need 60 votes on everything.
We have been worshiping at the altar of 60 votes. 51 is what it takes.
This notion of a lot of agreement overlooks the fact that there is stark disagreement on one thing - whether protecting the insurance industry should be a primary goal of our policy.
My GOP friends say yes. Democrats believe we need to put consumers first. Rachel Maddow explained this well last night. The health insurance industry has a different goal than we policy makers have.
Some things to watch out for this morning at the health care summit:
Will anyone actually explain the status of the public option?
We know the President supports it. We know that the Democrats at the table overwhelmingly support it. We know that the American people support it. And we know that the House of Representatives already voted for it.
So what's the problem?
At least in the game of Clue we find out who did the crime at the end. Before we write the obituary on the public option, I hope somebody explains.