Constitutional Ignorance Reigns Supreme on Capitol Hill

Hello – is there anybody out there who still believes our leaders in Washington care about what the Constitution of the United States says?  Or what it was intended to mean?  Or even that it exists?  If there actually is anybody out there who still believes this, recent discussions on Capitol Hill about proposed federal legislation should dispel such thought from the minds of even the most die-hard optimists.

Legislation dealing with the delivery and cost of health care in the United States is nearing votes in both houses of the Congress.  Although differing significantly in their details, the primary proposals in both the House and the Senate establish clearly it will be the heavy hand of the federal government, not patients and their doctors, who will be controlling health care decision-making in the decades to come. 

With such a massively expensive and substantively far-reaching piece of legislation being debated at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, one would hope that our “leaders” in Washington, DC might at least pretend to articulate a constitutional justification.  It wouldn’t be that hard, considering the precedents available at least since the 1930s for finding a justification for even the most intrusive government programs and regulations hiding somewhere in that magnificent document.  Even were the infamous “commerce clause” deemed not sufficient to provide a justification for a government program, the always popular “general welfare clause” could be dragged out to provide constitutional cover.

In this age of constitutional ignorance, however, Nanny State proponents don’t even bother pretending to provide a constitutional underpinning for whatever government–based and taxpayer-funded program they advocate.  HR 3962, the massive “Affordable Health Care for America Act of 2009,” is almost 2,000 pages long and would spend more than 1.2 trillion taxpayer dollars, but contains nary a reference to the Constitution; no wave of the hand to “general welfare” or even a passing homage to the “commerce clause.” 

In fact, when asked recently by a reporter if the health care bill was “constitutional,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi responded disdainfully, “Are you serious?  Are you serious?”  Obviously, she never answered the question.

The reason Pelosi never answered the question about the constitutional foundation for the legislation, is because quite simply, there is none.  There is no legitimate basis in the Constitution for the government to control decisions regarding what health care a person receives, what medical services and medications are appropriate for a patient, who is to pay for those services and products and how much they are to cost.  Of course, for a federal government that recently concluded it is proper to bail out some private business but not others, to purchase controlling interest in some corporations but not others, and to honor certain contracts but not others, it’s not really that big a step to directly control individual health care.

The response to another question about the constitutionality of a proposed federal edict is even more revealing of the low esteem in which many congressional leaders hold that once sacred document.  West Virginia Sen. Jay Rockefeller, who chairs the Commerce Committee, apparently is peeved about people who “text” with their handheld electronic devices while driving.  Not content to leave responsibility for addressing the problem to the several states, through long-standing laws that allow civil suits and criminal prosecutions of persons who cause accidents while driving negligently (for whatever reason, including being distracted by an electronic device), Rockefeller is proposing federal legislation to ban “texting” while driving. 

At a recent Commerce Committee hearing, during which concerns were raised about the constitutionality of such legislation, and about the principle of “federalism,” Rockefeller proudly proclaimed his constitutional disinterest thus — “I don’t really give a hoot about states’ rights or federal rights on this one.  I care about results.”  The “results” include another nail in the coffin of constitutional governance in the United States.

145 comments Add your comment

Mark

November 9th, 2009
9:36 am

For a former Congressman, Bob Barr’s views of the Constitutional Powers are staggering. He joins other mindless people, who ask, whenever they do not like an action of the government, the question “Where in the Constitution …?”

Mr. Barr complains that HR 3962 does not contain references to the Constitution, as if that were a requirement. The constitutionality of the bill should be the least of the concerns of Mr. Barr and his ilk, because there is such as simple remedy: the Supreme Court.

Mr. Barr and those who disregards the “general Welfare” clause surely object to the Interstate Highway System, assistance to victims of natural disasters, and any other law that might assist them in any way, if they are not listed in the Constitution – and almost none of them are.

StJ

November 9th, 2009
9:52 am

Every piece of legislation should be constitutionally vetted before it even moves out of committee, as EVERY federal official has taken an oath to defend it.

Anyone who approves or votes “yes” to anything unconstitutional should be removed from office. Period.

But it will never happen, not in the White House, Congress, or the jusiciary, including the Supreme Court…there are too many egocentric, self-serving people involved.

StJ

November 9th, 2009
9:53 am

errr…meant “judiciary”. Morning fingers.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
10:00 am

Mr. Barr also falsely claims that HR 3962 would allow the government to decide “what health care a person receives, what medical services and medications are appropriate for a patient.” There is nothing in HR 3962 that would give the government that power. HR 3962 and the other health care reform bills discussed in Congress do not give the government a control of the health care. There is nothing in HR 3962 that would prevent patients to require any health care they want and the medical practitioners are willing and capable of providing. All that the bills deal with is the system of paying for certain care under a system of insurance. Just like when having a collision auto insurance you can pay for any repairs not covered by it.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
10:07 am

StJ: constitutionally vetted? By whom?

Brandon

November 9th, 2009
10:18 am

Perhaps by any individual possessing a knowledge in legal diction/doctrine and half a brain, all traits that appear to be lacking on Capitol Hill?

Mark

November 9th, 2009
10:24 am

Brandon: I suppose you consider yourself to be such an individual.

Steven

November 9th, 2009
10:31 am

Page 94—Section 202(c) prohibits the sale of private health insurance policies, beginning in 2013, forcing individuals to purchase coverage through the federal government.

Page 297—Section 501 imposes a 2.5 percent tax on all individuals who do not purchase “bureaucrat-approved” health insurance—the tax would apply on individuals with incomes under $250,000

Two short examples. The Constitution does not allow for the federal government to force citizens to spend their hard-earned money (i.e. private property) on any product or service.

You said above that

“There is nothing in HR 3962 that would give the government that power. HR 3962 and the other health care reform bills discussed in Congress do not give the government a control of the health care”

The person or entity footing the bill does, in the end, have authority over what goods or services are permissible. If you think this would not apply to health care, then you have never interacted with anyone who has been either a Medicare or Medicaid provider. The government exacts unbelievable controls, and these decisions are, in the end, made by a low-salaried employee with little to no real knowledge about the field which they are making unilateral decisions about. Before you claim what is or is not in this or any bill, you should take the time to read it.

Brandon

November 9th, 2009
10:32 am

I consider myself an individual of enough intellectual security to be able to tell that this Health Care Act is not based on the constitution, but I wouldn’t claim to be an expert in legal processes. From the looks of it, though, you are even worse off, being blinded by the current glittering generalities and diffusion of “We want the best for our people,”.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
10:41 am

Steven: Show me where the bill does not allow you to pay for a medical service tthat a medical practitioner is willing to provide. The person or entity footing the bill does NOT have authority over what goods or services are permissible. Just as in my example, the auto insurance company does not have any authority of what services are permissible. If they pay for the fender but not the bumper, who forbids you to pay for the bumper?

Brandon: I think it is rather amazing that people who cry about lack of constitutionality ignore the fact that the Constitution provides for a constitutionality test: The Supreme Court decision.

Eric

November 9th, 2009
10:49 am

Right on! Good article again, Mr. Barr.

El Jefe

November 9th, 2009
11:01 am

Folks,

Let us face facts. The left does not hold our Constitution in any regard. To them, it is just a piece of old paper.

The left will take any clear sentence and twist its meaning to mean anything they want.

I say, lets de-elect them all. Come 2010, lets replace every Representative in the house with fresh blood that isn’t in the pocket of some special interest group.

El Jefe

November 9th, 2009
11:21 am

Why is it so hard for the lefties to understand the “general welfare” clause. Isn’t simple English enough for them? These are the enumerated powers of Congress, and yes, they have stepped way over the line on almost all of these.

Article I, Section 8. The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes;

To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States;

To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures;

To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the United States;

To establish post offices and post roads;

To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;

To constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court;

To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and offenses against the law of nations;

To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water;

To raise and support armies, but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years;

To provide and maintain a navy;

To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces;

To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the states respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by cession of particular states, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of the government of the United States, and to exercise like authority over all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards, and other needful buildings;–And

To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.

Emily

November 9th, 2009
11:29 am

Mark: “Mr. Barr and those who disregards the “general Welfare” clause surely object to the Interstate Highway System, assistance to victims of natural disasters, and any other law that might assist them in any way, if they are not listed in the Constitution – and almost none of them are.”

I don’t think he said he disregarded the ‘general welfare’ clause in the article (though he himself may feel that way, it wasn’t stated), he did however say there was no effort by the senate/house to USE that clause to justify the bill (or another clause). Of course, they’re not because most of the population seems not to know or care what the government is allowed or not allowed to do – so why waste the time with due diligence and reasoning only a few will care about – even if it IS something they should focus on.

It’d be even nicer if they could ever actually gain a sense of frugality.

tess

November 9th, 2009
11:30 am

Sir, seems that OBAMA is going to push this stupid bill down our throats whether
of not we approve! IS THAT IN THE
“…UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION.?…”

john coffey

November 9th, 2009
11:34 am

No government can force its people to purchase any particular commodity. If I do not want to purchase car insurance, I have the freedom to decline driving a vehicle. If I do not want to purchase a health-insurance policy, I have the freedom to eat healthy, exercise, and take my chances. Social Security should also be viewed as a commodity; If I do not want to have my wages garnished now for the purpose of funding a future retirement I might not live long enough to see, I should have the freedom to keep 100% of my wages and save/invest for my personal retirement as I see fit. Perhaps invading other countries should be viewed as a commodity. If I do not think invading a particular country is necessary or worth the cost, I should have the freedom to decline to pay for said invasion. Legitimate governments can only tax consumption. And I have the freedom to reduce/decline consumption as I see fit.

Steveo

November 9th, 2009
11:44 am

Mark: So the fact that it’s unconstitutional in the first place isn’t relevant? So we should just pass every bill then let the Supreme Court weed them out? Crazy notion. Does the court even take every case and operate very quickly? Wow.

booger

November 9th, 2009
12:07 pm

This bill, or what ever is ultimately approved, is only a beginning. The objective is a single payer system, and it will come quicker than most people think.

I remember a few short years ago when Mike King was AJC’s go to man on health issues. During the debates on Peach Care expansion, he stated that a few radical right wingers in the republican party were even suggesting this was the first step to government controlled health care.
Look how many steps we have have taken in three years. Think how many we will take in the next five.

And for those who do not think government already controls the health care system in the US. How could they reform something they do not control. I don’t think there is an opt out provision in the bill.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:09 pm

Emily: Do you seriously argue that in every bill the Congress passes there should be a statement justifying the action by reference to the Constitution? What difference would it make if HR 3962 started with the words: “In accord with the Constitution, which People of the United States ordained and established, among other things, to promote general Welfare …”?

JR

November 9th, 2009
12:10 pm

Hey Mark. What do the 9th and 10th Amendments mean?

JR

November 9th, 2009
12:11 pm

P.S. You might want to take a look at how the Supreme Court has interpreted the general welfare clause. It doesn’t mean we can do whatever we want as long as it’s for the collective good. Centralized economic planning, like this health care bill, does not work based on all available empirical data.

Steven

November 9th, 2009
12:13 pm

Well, I’ve shown where the government will, in fact, force us, the citizens, to purchase only government-approved health insurance. (This is as opposed to the auto-insurance you cite, where we can purchase insurance from any private entity we so desire.) This is definitely not Constitutional. I for one happen to think that ANY action (past or present, Democrat OR Republican-sponsored) taken by the government to infringe upon my private property and the freedom to choose how I spend that money is wrong, but that’s an argument for a different forum.

If you are so convinced that we will be able to get any healthcare that we want after the bill is in place, and we can do that now, then why a bill mandating that we purchase insurance from the government? To what purpose?

Also, why the need for a 2000 + page bill? What complexities are in there that are so necessary to fix a system that’s only mildly broken?

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:15 pm

Steveo: In a representative democracy, we elect representatives, who pass laws, and we implicitly trust them to act according to the Constitution. When they fail, then there is the Supreme Court remedy. What Brandon apparently arrogantly belives is that he is better qualified to judge the constituionality than the legislators.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:22 pm

Steven: First of all, the bill does NOT mandate that we purchase insurance from the government; it mandates that we purchase an insurance. The reason for that is to protect you and me for paying for medical services of those who gamble and do not buy insurtance, have an illness or accident, go to emergency, and we who are insured pay the the five times the cost of regular treatment, or other expensive treatment the hospitals will provide.

Shananeeee Fananeeeeeee

November 9th, 2009
12:29 pm

Fraud-bama shows ignorance daily. To achieve healthcare reform, “I’m going to have all the negotiations around a big table. We’ll have doctors, nurses, and hospital administrators. Insurance companies and drug companies will get a seat at the table too. But what we will do is, we’ll have the negotiations televised on CSPAN so that people can see who is making the arguments on behalf of their constituents and who are making arguments on behalf of the drug companies or the insurance companies. And so, that approach, I think is what is going to allow people to stay involved in this process.” – PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA. “You Lie.” – JOE WILSON.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:34 pm

JR: Nobody is arguing the the general welfare clause means that we can do whatever we want as long as it’s for the collective good. We are talking about a specific bill. If you think it is unconstitutional, why not wait for leal experts or the Supreme Court to make that judgment?

Hard Right Hook

November 9th, 2009
12:42 pm

Constitutional Ignorance on Capital Hill is already surpassed by General Ignorance on Capital Hill. Just look at the House & Senate leaders. One’s a lawyer, the other a moonbat.

The reason Congress steamrolls through pathetic legislation like this is that they know that we, the populace, can’t force a Constitutionional review of legistat. I’ve seen several posts here that tell me that there is a growing knowledge base, and those of us that are sick of an out-of-control Federal Government are gaining in strenght when it comes to pointing out Constitutional requirements.

It’s interesting that a few writers immediately try to impeach the character of Bob Barr, a former federal prosecutor. Contrast this to the Constitutiional scholar in the White House who can’t get it right.

There is not one syllable of authority in the Constitution for the Feds to write health care reform, regardless of what the libtards say. Just because Polar Bear Al says it’s a “living, breathing document” doesn’t mean it’s so.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:46 pm

I would trust a Constitutional scholar over a former federal prosecutor in questions regarding the Constitution anytime.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
12:48 pm

If the Constitution is not a living document, then why had it to be amended?

Kathy W

November 9th, 2009
12:57 pm

Steve, you are right on. You obviously have read the bill. Mark, what do you think this means: “Page 94—Section 202(c) prohibits the sale of private health insurance policies, beginning in 2013, forcing individuals to purchase coverage through the federal government.”

El Jefe

November 9th, 2009
12:58 pm

Good point Mark.

How about the right to vote for women and former slaves. How about taking the ability of the States to appoint their own Senators? What about the restrictions placed on slavery?

Just a few items.

It is an amendable document(as described in the Constitution), not a living one, one cannot freely interpret the document any old way, it must pass through many steps to be changed, specifically not through Court fiat.

Steveo

November 9th, 2009
1:07 pm

Mark: OK, but when you have members of the financial committees who, even Ron Paul commented, didn’t know we were not on a gold-based economy, you can tell these people have lost touch. Also, mandating people to pay for government or private coverage is freedom? People who can’t afford treatment usually don’t get it. DON’T force me to pay for things and don’t force a healthcare system I have reduced faith in on me. I do fine with self prevention. Exercise, eating healthy and other things. The current system is not set up to praise prevention, but to treat the “chronically ill” where illnesses are made up so big healthcare can reap benefits, preying on people’s uncertainty. See H1N1. DO NOT think forcing a crappy system into my life is for the betterment of all.

Hard Right Hook

November 9th, 2009
1:09 pm

Because there is no article in the Constitution that allows the prohibition of a legal product (alcohol). The constitution was amended to impose and remove prohibition.

Things change over time, Mark. So point out for us all where in the Constitution, the Feds are allowed to take over a large portion of private sector commerce? And again, see the 10th Amendement.

As for your Scholar hero, both he and his questionable Attorney General can’t get this right.

For reference, see FDR’s National Recovery Act.

B. Johnson

November 9th, 2009
1:10 pm

By 1942, constitutionally clueless Socialist FDR had managed to nominate eight pro-big federal government, outcome-driven justices to the USSC. And the goal of FDR’s growing showcase of state-sovereignty ignoring justices was evidently the following. Their goal seemed to be to simply ignore pro-state sovereignty constitutional statutes like Article V and the 10th Amendment when they interpreted the Commerce clause in pivotal cases. Such cases include Wickard v. Filburn and US v. Wrightwood Dairy Co.

Note that not only does the Wickard opinion reference state sovereignty as if it were a mere rumor, IMO, but I have yet to find any mention of the 10th A. or state sovereignty in the Wrightwood Dairy case opinion.

Fortunately, FDR’s corrupt justices could not rewrite constitutional history so we can expose their folly today. Indeed, regardless that these justices succeeded in establishing the federal government tradition of sweeping state sovereignty under the carpet for many generations, we still have the writings of constitutional experts to guide us.

To begin with, contrary to what Pelosi and other constitutionally-impaired lawmakers might think, Congress has no power to regulate intrastate commerce, the main excuse for liberals to force constitutionally unauthorized federal healthcare down everybody’s throats.

“For the power given to Congress by the Constitution does not extend to the internal regulation of the commerce of a State, (that is to say of the commerce between citizen and citizen,) which remain exclusively with its own legislature; but to its external commerce only, that is to say, its commerce with another State, or with foreign nations, or with the Indian tribes.” –Thomas Jefferson, Jefferson’s Opinion on the Constitutionality of a National Bank : 1791. http://avalon.law.yale.edu/18th_century/bank-tj.asp

Next, the USSC has already tested the idea of Congress regulating medicine, for example, deciding against Congress.

“Direct control of medical practice in the states is obviously beyond the power of Congress.” –Linder v. United States, 1925. http://supreme.justia.com/us/268/5/case.html

The bottom line is that the Congressmen who vote yes on Obamacare legislation will make a handy list of lawmakers who need to be charged with treason for blatantly violating their oaths to defend the Constitution.

Finally, the following words of Thomas Jefferson are appropriate for any official actions of the Oval Office and Congress which approve constitutionally unauthorized Obamacare.

“Where powers are assumed which have not been delegated, a nullification of the act is the rightful remedy.” –Thomas Jefferson: Draft Kentucky Resolutions, 1798. http://tinyurl.com/oozoo

Joan

November 9th, 2009
1:13 pm

Let your wishes be known. ATLANTA TEA PARTY EXPRESS AT THE CAPITOL AT 5:30 TONIGHT. Be there or be square.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
1:26 pm

Hard Right Hook: And I am asking you again: If what you claim is unconstitutional, why not force a review by the proper Constitutional authority, the Supreme Court? These questions about “where is it in the Constitution…” are nothing short of silly.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
1:30 pm

Steveo: “People who can’t afford treatment usually don’t get it.” ??? Wow, who would have thought that?

Mark

November 9th, 2009
1:37 pm

El Jefe: Generally I agree with you, although the difference between amendable and “living” might be more a semantic one than real. However, while I would agree that the Constitution should not be interpreted in any odd way, there is no doubt in my mind that even the interpretation has to change with time, because the authors of the Constitution could not foresee all the changes in the society, technology, etc.

Steveo

November 9th, 2009
1:38 pm

Mark: Nice. You just contradicted yourself.

Hard Right Hook

November 9th, 2009
1:41 pm

Unlike the battalions of libtards freely walking about at the expense of others, who think the universe was created just for them, I am a mere mortal. If I had the ability or power to file suit & have the Supremes review the legistaltion, I would. But it’s not law yet, so they can’t rule on proposed legistlation. That should be patently obvious.

The only reason you think asking about the verbiage in the Constitution is “silly,” is because you don’t have a clue what the Constitution says or doens’t say. You’re working in a vacuum, and that’s exactly what Queen Nancy wants. Again, tell us what the 10th Amendment says.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
1:55 pm

Hard Right Hook: Perhaps you could at minimum learn to read. Where did I write that ‘asking about the verbiage in the Constitution is “silly”’? What I wrote was that asking about anything people dislike a question “where is it in the Constitution?” is silly. Almost nothing in any bill or law is “in the Constitution.” If it were, why should that law exist? The Constitution cannot be so specific to spell out everything.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
2:02 pm

Hard Right Hook: Your arrogance is clearly showing. You think you are a Constitutional expert? I know well what the 10th amendment says.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
2:03 pm

Steveo: That is only what you think.

Jefferson

November 9th, 2009
2:27 pm

The should have to repeal a law to make a new law. Too many laws.

bob

November 9th, 2009
3:22 pm

Mark, we are not in a representative democracy, it’s a representative republic. If gov can force you to but their insurance then they are dictating healthcare. The real scam is dems saying people should have to pull their own weight then defend welfare, medicaid and Social Security. Both Obama and Frank are on record as saying this bill is the first step to single payer, they want their foot in the door. Since gov is forcing companies to accept high risk people, premiums will rise even faster, at that point, dems will go to single payer if they have their way. Thank goodness the senate does not have as high of a percentage of hacks as the house. Can I buy a wrecked car and then buy insurance on it, it’s only fair.

citizen

November 9th, 2009
3:26 pm

While most of us have been following this health insurance reform measure, I fear something larger is looming. Would someone google The Daily Star Lebanon, and explain to me what George Soros is peddling? This thing called Multilateral Financial System for the world to take the place of our International System that was created after World War II at the Bretton Woods conference. This really does scare me more than any of our domestic issues because I still believe in the American spirit of sheer will and we will overcome any weakness in our domestic system; but if our leaders in the White House are creating this smoke screen so that a bigger force can try and destroy our way of life, we are in much bigger trouble.

Chris Salzmann

November 9th, 2009
3:49 pm

Joan November 9th, 2009 1:13 pm SAID: Let your wishes be known. ATLANTA TEA PARTY EXPRESS AT THE CAPITOL AT 5:30 TONIGHT. Be there or be square.

CHRIS SAYS: You going to be there with your poster comparing health insurance reform to Nazism? Or perhaps you’re going to make that crazy comparison of Obama and socialism/marxism right? LMAO…..yeah, what a sorry bunch of sorry crazies.

jconservative

November 9th, 2009
3:52 pm

A close reading of legislative history will show that this has been the attitude of Congress since 1789. Even during those years that Mr. Barr spent in the House.

Captain

November 9th, 2009
4:38 pm

It appears Mark is taken charge of this topic, so let’s address some of Mark’s commentary.

Regarding the Supreme Court being the final arbitor. That is certainly correct, however you choose to overlook or ignore a few items related to that. To begin with, elected officials take an oath of office which requires them to “uphold” the Constitution, not challenge it using their elective office and the tax dollars of the citizenry to do so. Secondly, elected officials have the responsibility to “take into account the Constitution in all legislative action”, that is an implied understanding from the Founding Fathers and throughout the nation’s history. Elected officials cannot and should not throw caution to the wind as you suggest and pass legislation “hoping” the Supreme Court rules it constitutional. What if they rule it unConstitutional? Should those elected officials be expected to immediately resign and reimburse the Federal Gov’t the expense to which they put the taxpayers for the exercise? I think the simple answer is ABSOLUTELY.

To this ongoing comparison to Auto Insurance. That’s a totally bogus comparison. The United States Government does not impose a requirment to carry Automobile Liability Insurance.That decision belongs to the individual states. Furthermore, to inform you as to your lack of knowledge in that area, the State of Georgia has a mandatory Financial Responsibility Act applicable to Automobile Insurance. A person who buys a state mandated license plate must comply with the Act. That person can comply in one of two ways; 1) purchase Automobile INsurance with limits of Bodily Injury of not less than $25,000 per person, $50,000 each accident and $15,000 Property Damage, or 2) said person may fulfill the obligation by posting a Financial Bond of $50,000 with the state. Therefore, a person does not have to buy Auto Insurance.

Moving along, the HB passed by the Dems stipulates that the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall, within 18 months of enactment of the Bill, determine a Federally approved Policy of Health Insurance. Each individual shall be required to carry Insurance in compliance with the HHS Secretary. Each person shall comply by enrolling. The HHS Secretary shall determine Benefit levels, Deductibles, Co-insurance, Out of Pocket expenses. As it stands in the HB, the premiums will be a % of one’s individual income, or Family Income. Anyway a reasonable person reads the legislation it equals GOVERNMENT DETERMINES WHAT I CAN HAVE, HOW MUCH COVERAGE I CAN HAVE AND WHAT MY PREMIUM WILL BE. This in light of a Pres who repeatedly stated ‘if you like your current coverage, we’re going to let you keep it, if you like your current Dr, we’re going to let you keep that Doc. Nothing in this Bill will dictate anything otherwise’. Really? Then why is there a fine if my plan is better than what the HB dictates?

Mark, you can be naive, you can support Socialized Medicine if you wish. However, you are living in an absolute dream world if you think the 2044 page bill passed by Pelosi and the Radical Left is anything less than a Government takeover of Medical Services in this country. I hope you will enjoy the long lines, the diminished services, the rationing of care because if this plan, or anything remotely similiar is enacted, the quality health care, the Doctor-Patient relationship, the choosing of Hospitals for service, the choosing of specialists will be a memory. How can a reasonable person conclude anything else? That’s reality in France, the UK, Canada. There’s no reason to believe Nancy Pelosi, Charlie Rangel, Steney Hoyer, Maxine Waters and that crowd of looney tunes, the same crowd who promised their stimulus bill would hold unemployment below 8% and now it’s above 10% and more likely 15%, who promised the “most Ethical Congress” in the nation’s history can do anything more than ruin the most efficient, most patient response and innovative Health Care System in the history of civilization. You want to trust a crowd who can’t find fault with Charlie Rangel, Chris Dodd and the like? Not me.

If there is $400 Billion of savings by cracking down on Medi-care and Medi-cade Fraud, why not start by doing that today. Why do we need this massive takeover of Health CAre service to crackdown on Fraud within the system?

I favor reform, common sense reform. Frivilous lawsuit reform where the loser pays, abolishment of state lines for the purchase of health insurance, allowing business groups to align into associations across state lines and within the states to purchase and negotiate for lower rates, allowing individuals to determine what type of plan they want to purchase or not purchase, allowing individuals to take a tax deduction for premiums paid, elimination of ‘pre-existing conditions’ by the establisment of a “pooling arrangement” similiar to the Flood and Crop Insurance programs whereby insurers can re-insure those persons with significant medical issues which would generally make the uninsurable.

The HB plan also does not insure everyone. Why does it cost over $1 Trillion? Does that number seem extraordinarily high to insure 20 million people? SUre it does, the reason is the Dems are creating several new Federal AGencies and levels of bureaucracy and adding in excess of 300,000 new Federal Employees.

Mark, you keep trusting Democrats. This is the same Democrat Party whose Medicare and Medicaid agencies deny 2 claims for every 1 in the private sector, the same Democrat Party whose Social Security Administration requires over 1/2 of those applying for SS benefits to employ an Attorney for the very benefits they’ve paid for. You trust those Democrats and their Federal Government agencies to show you their kind and understanding side. I prefer to look elsewhere for reassurance, the Federal Government’s Medicare and Medicaid programs are horrible. The End.

Mark

November 9th, 2009
4:44 pm

bob: To say that we have not a representative democracy, but a representative republic, is one of those silly statements that does not even make sense. The term republic already includes the fact of representation, so that representative republic is superfluous. And since most decision are made by democratic means, we have a representative democracy, that is a republic.
As for the current proposal being a step to single payer system: So what? It is not a single payer system proposal. If, in our system of a republic (representative democracy) we the people elected representatives, who would choose to establish a single payer system, what is your problem with it? Is it not up to the people, through their representatives, to decide what they want?