The annual August recess for members of the U.S. House and Senate served as the starter’s gun for a large number of Democratic legislators to spread across the country to sell the Obama health care package.
Obama had pressed for Congress to approve his “change” in this nation’s health care program before the August recess. He devoted a tremendous amount of time trying to sell his program with personal appearances throughout the country, as well as nationally televised press conferences.
House and Senate members put together various plans, mostly without any invitation to or participation by Republican legislators, although one of Obama’s repetitive campaign pledges was for bipartisanship and transparency in all government actions. He even said he would make sure the public would be able to read and study any proposed federal legislation calling for major “changes” at least several weeks before such legislation was brought to Congress for a vote. Few, if any, of these pledges have been kept.
Due to the less-than-open manner in which Democratic Senate and House members went about developing their health plans, GOP members, as well as the public, were shut out.
Eventually a more-than-1,000-page health care plan was put together. Obama and his aides wanted the plan approved prior to the August break. Most House and Senate Democrats acknowledged they had not read the bill but they called for its quick passage.
Gradually, greater numbers of Senate and House members realized they were being used to try to jam a plan down the throats of the public, a plan they themselves had not read and a plan that would affect 20 percent of this nation’s economy — not to mention the manner in which Americans would receive and pay for health care. It is reported there currently are four House plans and one Senate plan designed to carry out Obama’s wishes to overhaul health care in the United States.
Skepticism and opposition started to grow, and it became clear there was no way Obama was going to get passage of a health care bill prior to the August recess. In fact, White House observers suddenly realized there was a good chance they would not be able to get approval even when the lawmakers returned to Washington in September.
Obama then changed tunes and said the country would have a new health plan by the end of the year.
Democrats left Washington with the message to go home, test the public’s pulse and sell the many radical changes called for in the bill. In fact, there isn’t any firm health care bill. Most in Congress do not know at this time what may or may not end up in Obama’s plan. The secrecy surrounding this massive change is one of the major reasons the public is expressing growing opposition.
When legislators returned home they found significant questioning, mistrust and anger about what Obama has been trying to force through Congress. Town hall meetings were scheduled by many Democratic lawmakers, and they were surprised by the vocal anger and opposition. During the past several weeks, this opposition has grown, and public opinion polls indicate there is a significant slide downward in Obama’s popularity, as well as growing concerns and suspicions about greater government control of Americans’ health care.
Opposition and anger has grown to the point that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said those forcefully speaking out in their distrust and anger are “un-American.” She and others have gone overboard in trying to denigrate those who have spoken out about the Obama plan.
Granted, there are sure to be some in these audiences who attend only to cause troubles or try to disrupt, but it is reported the vast majority of those at the meetings are genuinely interested and concerned about any major change in how they receive health care, the cost of such care, who will pay and the many, many unknowns contained in the various proposals being designed by House and Senate members as well as close Obama advisers.
This writer was told former Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius may be Secretary of Health and Human Services but that the original nominee for this Cabinet position, former Sen. Tom Daschle, actually is calling the shots and directing the strategy to get Obama’s dream of a new American system of health care passed in Congress — regardless of the public’s reaction to the plan.
Obama is out to change many historic policies and systems in the United States and bring this country closer to national socialism. A massive change in health care is one of the critical and early building blocks in his plan.
In one way, it is disturbing to see and hear some of the town hall meetings held to discuss the health care changeover, as shouting and yelling is almost foreign to the usual American public meetings to discuss major political issues. We see such actions in other countries but not in the United States.
However, Obama has made it clear he is going to try to remake America in many ways: lower or no income taxes for the majority of Americans, government-provided health care for the growing millions of illegals living in this country, a redistribution of wealth, massive debts for this country and its citizens, government caps on how much certain types of businesses can pay their executives but no concerns about the multi-millions paid to athletes and entertainers, the government takeover of private businesses as General Motors and Chrysler, banks and insurance companies and obvious efforts by Obama to weaken our capitalism in favor of socialism and/or massive government control.
This being the case, is there any wonder why growing numbers of Americans are expressing greater concern and anger?
Granted, there are wrongs in this country, but is this justification to call for major changes, adopt failed policies of other countries and, in so doing, tear apart what has created the world’s freest and cleanest system of government, offering more freedoms to its citizens than any other country and a country which has been the strongest supporter of freedoms for those living in other parts of the world?
It’s time, past time, in fact, for some very serious questioning of what the president is trying to sell to America — with the help of many in the media. The angry voices and shouting, the lack of respect shown to some elected officials, are not pleasant to watch, but far better to have serious questioning than to end up having citizens say, “Why didn’t we do or say something, and why didn’t we see what was happening when we had a chance to say ‘no’ rather than to be asleep and have our freedoms compromised?”
History is likely to show the manner in which the health legislation question is resolved and sets the stage for how much Obama was able to change America into his own dream.