Within HR3200 there is actually language exempting state government programs from the requirements of the program but then tied certain forms of Federal aid to compliance. There are few cases in which the 10th amendment has been held to have any actual effect. But it would seem that health care is a natural for inclusion under the commerce clause.
The thing that I think is kind of funny in a sad sort of way is that fiscal conservatives did not approve of what GW has done/did. It is assumed by the left because GW did it than the conservatives went along with it. To most conservatives I feel that GW kept the country safe on our soil and other than that grade him C D and F. Pretty please dont begin to act like a vote for McCain was more of the same Bush Cheney as he would have to make a pretty far move to the right of even the blue dogs just to get to the center.
This country had better start being run as a business or like families stuggle to make ends meet and make some tough choices to survive. Printing and borrowing more than you make or are worth is foolish at best.
I hope that congress would have discussions amongst themselves such as these. Maybe something good might come out of Washington if they did.
The commerce clause has been stretched so much and in so many directions that I'm not certain you could tell anything by it. Congress has re-written it in silly putty. I have a sense that healthcare wouldn't have been included in the commerce clause 50-60 years ago.
Below is a copy of a letter form my local congress woman.
I felt that this was a very factual response to my letter to her regarding the healthcare issue.
Thank you for contacting me regarding recent efforts to reform the healthcare system in America. Your views are important, and I appreciate you taking the time to share them with me.
Many healthcare reform proposals have been discussed in Congress. Most of the debate has focused on HR 3200, America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009, since this bill has been considered by three House committees. If you are interested in reading this bill you can do so through the Library of Congress's website at <a href="http://www.thomas.gov/">www.thomas.gov</a>. From there you can search by bill number for HR 3200 and then click on "text of legislation."
I believe that this bill is dangerous and misguided as currently written. This bill would create a "Health Benefits Advisory Committee" which will determine what health coverage you must purchase, and will tax you if you do not buy coverage that meets their demands, whether you want (or need) that coverage or not-and whether you think you can afford that coverage or not. HR 3200 also creates a new government-run insurance plan which will ultimately reduce access to healthcare for anyone on it. This government-run plan will almost certainly compensate physicians and hospitals at Medicare rates or something close to that. These rates are usually much lower than market rates, which is why it's sometimes difficult for Medicare beneficiaries to find a doctor as a new patient. This means that Hospitals and doctors will have to cut staff and other costs, which will hurt the quality of healthcare offered in America.
To pay for all of this new bureaucracy, the bill includes more than $800 Billion in new tax hikes, including tax hikes on small businesses. The President's own Chief Economic Advisor has stated that these new taxes would kill 4.7 million American jobs. An independent analysis by the Lewin Group found that 114 million Americans (that's a third of the country) would eventually lose their current insurance as businesses shifted employees to the new government plan. Despite claims that reform will reduce health care costs, the bipartisan Congressional Budget Office recently noted this health care plan would "probably generate substantial increases in federal budget deficits." The bill also exempts employer coverage from the new federal insurance mandates in the bill, but only for 5 years. This will further encourage employers to drop coverage and put employees on the new government plan.
HR 3200 contains NO savings from tort reform or reducing waste, fraud, and abuse in the system. Attempts to inject sensible policies to ensure fair payment rates, restrict access to taxpayer funded healthcare for illegal immigrants, improve Medicare's ability to fight fraud, among many others, were rejected during committee consideration of the bill. I also find it telling that an amendment that would have required Members of Congress to use the new government-run plan if the bill passed was also rejected in Committee. I cosponsored this amendment, and I believe it would have provided a necessary show of good faith if it had been accepted.
However, my opposition to HR 3200 does not mean that I do not recognize the problems in our current healthcare system. The President has stated that too much is spent on healthcare. On that point, he's right. Healthcare spending is 18% of our Gross Domestic Product. If we make no changes, Medicare and Medicaid alone will consume three-fourths of the entire federal budget by 2040. But the solution to this problem isn't to spend trillions more, expand federal programs, and add new bureaucracies. It defies logic.
It's unacceptable that a family of four pays thousands in monthly premium costs when they buy on the individual market. It's unacceptable that medical bills routinely bankrupt Americans who thought their insurance would cover them. However, there's no excuse for saddling our grandchildren with insurmountable debt. There's no excuse for creating a new government-run healthcare program that will keep some from getting the life-saving care they need. There's no excuse for pushing these massive changes-littered with unintended consequences-through Congress just because the President says "the moment is right".
Instead, we can assist small businesses with insurance coverage, promote transparency in insurance marketing, provide premium assistance for the needy, and create a meaningful health insurance portal that fosters true price competition between the 1,300 health insurance companies in the U.S. We should extend tax benefits to those who purchase their own insurance, quickly implement health IT software standards, eliminate pre-existing condition restrictions, and give Medicare and Medicaid more resources and authority to truly combat the waste and fraud that everyone knows exists.
We should, once and for all, address the looming budget catastrophe facing Medicare and Medicaid instead of hurrying this fiscal hurricane. There are innovative policy changes that could make a real impact without creating a new government plan and expanding entitlements. We can and should make these shrewd and levelheaded changes that make sense not just for Democrats or Republicans, but for Americans.
Please know that I understand that you probably have very strong feelings on this important issue. If you would like to share your opinion with me in person I encourage you to attend one of the town hall meetings I will be holding soon. I will be conducting these town hall meetings at the following dates, times, and locations: