December 22, 2009
The Senate Democrats are Using YOUR Money to Buy Votes!!!
While the back room creation of a debt-building, tax-raising, Medicare-rationing, health care reform bill continues in the Senate, we now find out that the vote buying by Senate Democrats has also continued. One of the first vote buys was the modern day "Louisiana purchase”, giving Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana $300 million dollars for her home state. They didn't even have the guts to name the state by name; they tried to hide it under natural disaster language which was carefully worded so that the only state that would qualify would be Louisiana. And then, when Majority leader Harry Reid still found that he was a few votes short of the 60 votes needed to get cloture on the debate and stop a filibuster, the Senate Democrats started their own "cash for cloture” program. They offered special Medicare funding for Senator Ben Nelson's home state of Nebraska along with Vermont and Massachusetts. The three-state kickback is projected to cost taxpayers $1.2 billion over 10 years. To ensure a few other votes the Senate's "cash for cloture” program promised higher payments to doctors and hospitals in states with smaller population density, which just happened to include Senator Max Baucus' home state of Montana. How can this kind of vote buying go on, and just where is the Senate's integrity? This underhanded process is an insult to seniors and to all Americans.
Americans have long been outraged about the influence of lobbyists and special interest groups on our elected officials, and we have encouraged Congress to enact new regulations and reporting requirements to try to control them. But unfortunately, it appears we have turned a blind eye to the blatant use of our tax dollars to literally buy Senators' votes. Even the Governor of Nebraska was embarrassed by this blatant favoritism afforded to his state to obtain Senator Nelson's vote. Main-street Nebraskans are also outraged. Dr. Becky Hollibaugh, a family doctor in the rural town of Friend, Nebraska, didn't hold back when she said in an email to Senator Nelson after his capitulation, "You have my disgust and disdain forever, you socialist-coddling coward.” This is from a rural family doctor, the very people we are trying to keep in practice. An old western saying says, "If it looks like a pig, snorts like a pig, and smells like a pig, it's probably a pig.” This vote buying stinks and everyone knows it.
The facts still remain, both the Senate and the House health reform bills will:
Cut Medicare by almost $500 billion which will positively lead to the rationing of care by bureaucrats making health care decisions for you and your doctor.
Pile even more debt on our country, and force ever-increasing tax hikes, both of which will be passed on to burden our kids and grandkids in the future.
Raise our Medicare insurance premiums at time when seniors are getting a zero COLA for 2010 and beyond.
As it nears a Senate vote, this bill looks, sounds, and smells like a pig, and we need to not mince words. We need every concerned American to speak up now, just like Dr. Hollibaugh in Nebraska. We need to tell all of our elected officials exactly how we feel. They can't hide in the back rooms of Washington forever. When they come home, they need to hear the commonsense thoughts of honest, hard-working Americans, who won't put up with influence peddling and vote buying, especially when they're using our hard earned tax dollars to do it. Tell them that using artificial deadlines and back room deals isn't the way to craft effective health care reform legislation. Tell them that you still have the ultimate political voice, and that's your vote. Tell them you have watched and will continue to watch their every vote -- and that you will vote appropriately based on how they represent you. As you gather your family and friends around you in this holiday season, tell them how you feel about health care reform and this outrageous process. Encourage them to let their voices be heard too. Tell them that now is the time to make a difference, and remind them that the integrity of our nation is on the line. Tell them to call, fax, and email their Members of Congress today, just as you will. Let Congress and the Administration know that there are far, far better ways to accomplish sensible health care reform. Flawed legislation passed with a corrupt legislative process can't possibly bring a good outcome for America or its citizens.