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As we've seen with Hobby Lobby and now with the recent DC Circuit Halbig decisions, it's not like Republicans are really able to contain their glee as people lose their access to Health Care due to the actions of Right-Wing Activist Judges.

Conservatives who used to constantly rail against "Activist Judges" are now having a Good Long Hearty Laugh over these decisions.

Even though Hobby Lobby's "deeply held-belief" ran in contrast to Doctors and factual science, as well as the tenets and writings of their own religion, and also created brand new corporate religious rights - which you should expect people who vehement oppose Roe for "creating" the right of privacy would object to, but they don't - meanwhile with Halbig - a decision that would essentially punished Millions for a Proofreading Error - the Republican Judges making the decision actually spent the oral argument section of the case, spouting Republican Talking Points against the ACA.

It’s important to understand just who these two Republicans are. Judge Randolph is a staunchly conservative judge who spent much of the oral argument in this case acting as an advocate for the anti-Obamacare side. Randolph complained, just a few weeks before President Obama would announce that the Affordable Care Act had overshot its enrollment goal, that the launch of the Affordable Care Act was “an unmitigated disaster” and that its costs “have gone sky-high.” At one point, Randolph also cut off Judge Harry Edwards, the sole Democratic appointee on the panel, to cite an editorial published by the conservative Investor’s Business Daily to prove the argument that Obamacare should be defunded.
So where, pray tell, does this leave the GOP in the eyes of the public as we move toward November's mid-term?

It is often assumed that the GOP's Congressional and State-house gerrymandering is far too deep and far too severe to overcome.  That coupled with the Dems usually tendency to sit mid-terms out seems to have predetermined the outcome of 2014.

Yet, weren't these exactly same conditions in play in 2006?

What did we have then, the Howard Dean 50 Seat Strategy?  Many, if you do recall, fought against it - including then DCCC head Rahm Emmanuel who felt it was throwing good money after bad.

Monday 13 November 2006

    The chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), Rahm Emanuel, stormed out of Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman Howard Dean's office in May after an expletive-filled tirade against the DNC's spending too much money, too early, in "non-battleground states." Emanuel was concerned the DNC would be broke and not on the playing field in November. The opposite was true, and the playing field was larger due to the early investment.

Then, just as now, the vision of taking over the House seemed completely impossible and beyond comprehension to many of those in the upper rungs of power.  

But. It. Worked.

So now eight years later are we trying, for a change, to repeat what DID work rather than yet again repeat what Didn't?

Has anyone ever head the words "50 State Strategy" since then? The fact is that you can't take advantage of having the wind-at-your-back if you don't even bother to unfurl your sails.

So then again, what the DNC or DCCC does or doesn't do is no restriction on what we here and elsewhere - the activist/amateur left - may choose to do.  Their lack of action is no limit on our actions or it's effectiveness.

Next month in cities all over the nation Congress will be holding Town Hall meetings for the August recess.  They'll be taking questions, and providing answer to their constituents.  Four years ago the Right-wing used this situation to continue to stoke fear, uncertainty and doubt about the "dangers" of the ACA.

But now we have the advantage of experience.  Now we know that over 8 Million Americans now have affordable Healthcare that they simply couldn't have qualified for, or afforded previously. Many of these Americans have had, some for the first time in years, a sense of security that many of them never thought they would achieve until they reached 65.

Hobby Lobby, and also cases such as Wheaton, threatens the ability of women to have cost-free access to contraceptives, whether they need them to address ongoing medical conditions or not.  Halbig threatens the ability to millions of American, predominantly in red-states that refused to create their own individual Health Exchanges, to potentially losing their subsidies while the mandate requiring them all to purchase care remains in place, putting them in the dual jackpot of not only losing the policy they've just acquired this year, but also having to face the IRS tax penalty for not having care the following year after that.

And yet, Republicans in the State Houses - who could have avoided this by taking responsibility and making their own exchanges - and in the Senate - who just last week blocked the Hobby Lobby fix vote - and in the House - where they seem far more interested in suing the President for using his executive authority to stall provisions of the ACA that they wanted stalled - have all been chortling up their sleeve while these decisions have come down.

So maybe, when they come out to all their town hall meetings, we should ask them about it.  

- Do they think that the Religious Freedom of a Corporation should trump the personal freedom of a women employees to be treated equally with a male employee's access to cost-free contraception?

- Do they believe that an Abortion is the Termination of a Pregnancy as specified by the AMA and American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology [who you would think should know] or is it something else that was never even mentioned in the Bible?

- Do they believe that anyone's "Closely Held Belief" should be given more weight in our law and under our constitution than facts, science and medicine?

- Just how funny is it for a women with polycystic ovarian syndrome to have to have one of her ovaries removed because she can't afford the birth control pill that would have prevented that condition?

And if they're answer is that it "only costs $9 at Target", that's already been shown to be a total crock. Prescribed Birth Control costs much more than that, and it's not really possible to switch and substitute on method for another because not all women are medically able to use just any method.

- Do they think it's a "good thing" that millions of people in their state will be unable to afford their private healthcare plans anymore if the DC Circuits Halbig ruling is upheld by the SCOTUS?

- What, if anything, do they think these people should do then?  Go to the Emergency Room to handle their Hyper-tension, Heart Disease, Emphysema, Bursitis or Cancer and simply put their House on the Market - if they're lucky enough to have one - in order to cover the bill?

I'm sure we can come up with dozens of questions to ask Republicans who support Hobby Lobby and Halbig  - then of course Film and post their Answers which I'm sure, even with their recent attempts at managing their message, will produce some results that are sure to Go Viral just when millions of Americans are growing more and more concerned with these issues and their confidence in Congress is now lower than the popularity of Jar Jar Binks.


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Comment Preferences

  •  Good Liberal Activists (9+ / 0-)

    Need to ask hardcore RWNJ Congresspersons who think Hobby Lobby was a great decision if they believe that this now grants Islamic businesses the right to set up Sharia Law in their workplaces.

    Pound the point home, continuously, and point out that "Well, gee, if their beliefs are sincerely held then I think SCOTUS just said they could do it."

    Watch the rubes and hatemongers squirm like there's no tomorrow trying to justify why it's okay that Good Christian Businesses™ are good imposing their religion, but Islamofascists don't even get Constitutional protection against lynching, or some such nonsense.

  •  Is the word "tenet" a lost cause? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    psnyder, SteelerGrrl, trkingmomoe

    Everyone--print and radio--seems to use "tenant" instead. (Otherwise, nice diary.)

  •  Halbig won't be decided prior to the midterms (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    trkingmomoe, coffeetalk

    The only way that Halbig will be decided before the midterms is if the DC en banc panel finds in favor of the administration and the SCOUTS declines to take the case. If the SCOTUS decides to take the case it will not be resolved before the midterms, it's actually unlikely that even oral arguments would be scheduled that quickly.

    So, in my view Hobby Lobby might have a negative impact in some Congressional races, but the ruling will not personally impact a significant number of women this year. It might have a bigger impact in 2016. Halbig won't have an impact in 2014 because it won't be decided in time.

    "let's talk about that" uid 92953

    by VClib on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 03:11:39 PM PDT

    •  There are Real Realities, Legal Realities (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      leftykook, chrisculpepper, JGibson

      and then there are Political Realities.

      Fast and Furious isn't a Real Issue, Benghazi isn't a Real Issue.  IRSghazi and BergdahlGhazi aren't Real Issues. People respond to these emotionally, not factually.

      So the question I pose is, can these Hobby Lobby, Wheaton & Halbig be made to become a Political Problem regardless of the technical legal issues which could mitigate their actual, literal impact?  

      I agree that in real terms Hobby Lobby and Wheaton won't affect women this year because for one thing their still in the middle of the plans they signed up for last year, and technically the SCOTUS said that the mandate to provide cost-free preventive care including all 20 FDA approved contraceptive methods was a valid compelling interest and should be maintained, it just had to be accomplished in a way that was the least inconvenient to Hobby Lobby, or for that matter Wheaton.

      Republicans however, regardless of that legal reality, have stacked out the position that allowing Health Care Gender Inequality, requiring women to pay out of their own pocket for equivilent prescriptions and treatments that are Free For Men is just Fine. With. Them.

      It doesn't matter that the SCOTUS in Hobby Lobby didn't ask for that result, That's their position.

      So what would can do is simply tell the story Sandra Fluke told...

      What - Senator or Congressman - would you say to a woman who has been diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome and prescribed birth control medication by her physical to keep that situation in check, but because she is a college student can't afford to pay for it out of her own pocket without dropping out of school and getting a second job, she goes without her medication - and as a consequence of going without her medication grows a cyst the size of tennis ball, has to have one her ovaries removed and is now going to early onset menopause at age 35?

      Do you think "religious freedom" is going to be a compelling argument for this young woman who will, due to positions held and supported by the Republican Party, will now never be able to have children?

      It doesn't matter whether Hobby Lobby will or won't create that scenario because it already happened prior to the preventive mandate.  That's the story Sandra Fluke told to the House.

      When you make things personal, when you make them specific, that's when you start to move those on the other side to understand the ramifications of what were really talking about with this piece by piece dismantling of the ACA.


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