Monday, July 20, 2009

Health Care: Obama's Waterloo!!!

“This isn’t about me. This isn’t about politics. It is about a health care system that is breaking American families,” President Obama responded to Sen. DeMint’s assertion that health care overhaul “could be the president’s ‘Waterloo’”(Obama Challenges GOP Critics on health care, www.msnbc.com, 7/20/09). As the debate over how to bend the curve of cost in health care, the political hot potato continues to snag sound bites instead of looking at the key issues. In reality the Democrats do not need a single Republican vote to pass health care reform. Politically speaking they do because if the CBO, and other groups, are correct and the reform only produces financial burden on the states and future generations the Democrats NEED to share the blame.

While I agree that reform is needed but let’s not try to ram it through without making sure it doesn’t exist mandates on States and other agencies that are fiscally disabling. Sometime during the late 80’s to today the State Rights have been eroded by ever increasing mandates by the Federal Government. A prime example is No Kid Left Behind program that forces ADHD and other kids with special needs back into the mainstream classrooms in exchange for Federal dollars. Another example is the use of highway funds to push the .08 legal limit and soon to be café standards. For if a state does not institute either billions of dollars in Federal money will go elsewhere.

So when people say let’s take our time on Health Care and do it right the first time, we do not need a President that runs short on patience and diligence. The very same President that is pushing for a public option that will, according to the CBO, strain state budgets. The only saving grace is the President does not have the power, at least not yet, to control the CBO reporting or fire members of the CBO as he did with an Inspector General earlier this year.

Tim Kaine, in a mass email message, stated when talking about the Republican platform on health care is that “Their plan is simple: oppose health care reform as a political ploy to weaken the President and defeat his entire agenda of change. But if we follow the Republican “Party of no” and do nothing, we’ll not only ensure more of the same but saddle our children and grandchildren with a growing burden on exploding costs and declining care that they may never overcome.” Really Mr. Kaine, are you sure you are not looking at the President’s plan?

Now the pundits have touted that Republicans have not offered an alternative. Republicans have and most recently were working with Blue Dog Democrats to find a bipartisan plan. The trouble is the compromised plan does not call for a public option. No matter which side of the fence one falls when it comes to health care reform, all agree something needs to be done.

Moving forward we need to pressure our Congress to act intelligently, diligently, and in a manner that will produce reform that actually drives costs down. They can start by telling the President “No!” to a public option. Or at least “No!” until it has been determined that the cost curve is trending downward. I am one of the millions of American’s without health care and I do not want it provided for me by the government. Assist me in obtaining private health insurance, I can live with that. As the stimulus bill has done nothing to curb the economic landscape, please do not act with similar haste with health care.