We already know from President Obama’s recent infomercial on health care that he wouldn’t dare subject himself or his family to the government health care “option” he is pushing. But, what about Congress?
All versions of the health care legislation currently floating around Capitol Hill specifically exempt members of Congress from any requirement to participate. Any sane person (looking at solely at those facts), should wonder why. After all, we are told that the government option will provide health care as good, or better than what the President and Congress currently receive.
So, Sen. Tom Coburn (R. Ok.) proposed an amendment to the bill in the Senate Finance Committee that would require all members of Congress to participate in the government option. The amendment passed, but don’t celebrate yet. All Democrats, except three, voted against the amendment. (I’ll explain at least 2 of those 3 in a moment.) But first, let’s look at some of the Democrats who “wouldn’t be caught dead” in the government plan.
… Sherrod Brown and Sheldon Whitehouse won’t themselves join a plan that “will offer benefits that are as good as those available through private insurance plans — or better,” as the Ohio and Rhode Island liberals put it in a recent op-ed. And even a self-described socialist like Vermont’s Bernie Sanders, who supports a government-only system, wouldn’t sign himself up.
Something seems wrong here. Senators Brown and Whitehouse write an op-ed piece they hope all Americans will read, extolling the virtues of a government health plan, but they refuse to be forced into joining it? And, Sen. Sanders who wants only a government system, refuses to participate in that system? Gee, why would that be?
Well, lets look at the Democrats who voted to join the government plan. Two of the three Democrats who voted to subject themselves to it were Sen. Dodd (D. Ct.), and Sen. Kennedy (D. Ma.). Senator Dodd is chairman of the Senate Finance Committee where the amendment was introduced. Call me cynical, but, I strongly suspect that the requirement that Congress participate in the plan will “magically” disappear in the final bill, much like, under Sen. Dodd’s leadership, the AIG bonuses “magically” appeared in the Stimulus Bill. When questioned about the disappearance, Sen. Dodd will look as shocked and amazed, as he did when questioned about the appearance of AIG bonuses. But, for the moment, I suspect, in the Senator’s mind, it is a great public relations move.
One Republican refused to be compelled to join the government health care plan, Sen. Gregg (R. N.H.). When asked why, he said the public option,
will be so bad that I don’t think anyone should be forced to join.
If Obamacare passes, what is now labeled the “public option” will, within ten years, become the “public mandate“. It will be bad health care, but, unlike Congress, you will have no “option”. You will be forced to join.