I'll take the river down to still water and ride a pack of dogs.
You also have to worry about a lot of the 48-60 year olds that feel it is not worth it to continue. One of the groups I work with is made up of 4 doctors that are all 50-60 and all have told me that depending on the actual change that occurs they are more than willing to walk away and live life without the hassles. Fishing in the Keys all summer long vs working for 21+% less…. All of them love what they do, but all have been in the business long enough to be able to retire and not worry about much for the rest of their days. I am also sure there are a lot of docs in this age group that are burned out already and while they still are great doctors, they would have less than no problem walking away as they are holding on for a few more years of income rather than the love of the job (note that is not saying they are bad doctors or anything, but as with any profession there comes a point for many that it is about a few more years of income rather than “the love”). The loss of these docs also affects the future docs coming up because the good old experiences and best in their field will not be around to mentor and train the new kids.
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Obviously, Republicans were outraged by the adoption of the Senate bill by a 60 vote majority. How undemocratic! Their one consolation was that they knew the House opposed the bill as adopted and were confident that it would never be ratified without amendments that would force a new vote in the Senate.
- welfare reform -- which I supported -- was passed entirely through reconciliation. This was a massive rewrite of Federal laws that had been standing for 60 years. How was reconciliation appropriate as a tool?
- 2001 tax cuts -- which I opposed -- were passed while PayGo rules were still in place. Those rules prohibited passage of programs that created significant deficits beyond a 10 years period. To overcome this limitation, all the tax cuts were structured to sunset after 10 years laying the framework for the largest tax increase in history.
- 2003 tax cuts -- which I opposed -- were passed after PayGo rules were rescinded but using reconciliation and a vote of 50 Republicans plus the VP to pass. Reconciliation is not supposed to be used except for actions that reduce deficits. Hard to say about a program that increased the deficit by almost $400 billion (the administration had sought $750 billion but a couple of moderates held out).
- Medicare Prescription program -- which I supported in concept but opposed because of the way it was structured -- was passed through reconciliation despite the fact that it represented a net increase in Medicare trust fund deficits of more than $500 billion with no offsetting source of revenues.
In the interim, Brown was elected and the Dems lost their 60 vote edge. It looked like the Dems might use the period prior to searing in Brown to pass a modified bill, but Obama said that he would not support such passage until after Brown was sworn in. Unlike the situation in Minnesota, where Republican protests prevented Franken from being seated, Dems allowed Brown to take his seat even before the election had passed all hurdles for certification in Massachusetts. It could easily have been held up for as much as a couple of months, allowing a bill to pass. Would Bush and a Republican controlled Congress have taken advantage of that opportunity? I leave that answer to you.
So what did the Democrats do? When they first decided to consider reconciliation, numerous Democratic member said that anything done had to conform with a strict interpretation of the rules since they did not want the types of distortions that had been supported in the past. They sat with the parliamentarians to determine the limits of those rules and then began to craft a deal based on acceptance of the Senate bill into law with fixes using reconciliation. Health reform is not being adopted through reconciliation. It has already been adopted. The reconciliation process was to be used for modifications that would change the timing and structure of revenue sources, eliminate some of the special deals, etc., with each change being measured against a rule requiring that it help reduce the deficit and that it be related to financing.
Initially the fixes were to be passed as part of the same bill as the adoption of the Senate bill using "deem and pass." This "radical" procedural move had only been used to pass 20-30% of all rule changes when the House was under Republican control from Newt Gingrich on. The Senate parliamentarian said that the Senate bill had to actually become law before reconciliation could be used to change it and Republicans expressed outrage over efforts to link the bill and the changes together. Democrats backed down and adopted the Senate bill as is and then took a separate vote on the fixes.
My question to you is where is the abuse of the process? From a personal perspective, my major complaint is that the Democrats are fighting with 12 ounce gloves while Republicans are using brass knuckles.
Really, so now you are an expert on congressional procedural law as well.
I think time will tell if there were any illegalities, I will leave that to the people who KNOW and practice such.
When the dust settles and the STINK subsides and we find out the extent of the backroom deals, shady tactics, arm twisting & coercion to force these votes there my be some questions.
Let's see how it plays out.
To make the assumption and assertion you made is absurd and unrealistic.
No one knows all the facts yet, not even you, the sole possessor of the truth!!
Stan b & Elvis
"The public will have five days to look at every bill that lands on my desk." - Barack Milhous Obama
Obama will go down in history as a bigger liar than Dick Nixon.
We live in Cuba now.
I think I will follow the good advice of this thread in November. My congressman is a freshman conservative republican that voted against the health care bill. No matter, he sat in congress and didn't stop the bill. So, in accordance to the advice of the sages here, I should vote him out anyway, right?
I don't want to feed an ugly dog!
"I also have a healthcare plan that would save the average family $2,500 on their premiums" - Barack Milhous Obama
I'll just sit back and wait for my premium reduction notice in the mail. I'm sure it will come in the mail next week like the President promised.
“Hitler did not have to destroy democracy; he merely took advantage of the decay of democracy and at the critical moment obtained the support of many to whom, though they detested Hitler, he yet seemed the only man strong enough to get things done.” F. A. Hayek from his book, "The Road To Serfdom".