Free Markets, Free People

House To Try To Pass Its Version Of Health Care This Week

And it has a number of Democrats more than a little nervous (including 40 Dems who’ve signed a letter stating they won’t sign on as long as the abortion provisions in the bill remain).  Why are they nervous?  Well, 2010 is right around the corner, Republicans has just won some key special elections and Nancy Pelosi has said she’d be ok with losing a few seats if she could get this bill passed.  Here’s a summary:

For starters, the bill is a lot more expensive than advertised. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) pegs its cost at $1.055 trillion over 10 years, not the $894 billion Mrs. Pelosi claims. Politico reports that “the legislation is projected to create deficits over the second five years” by front-loading revenue and benefit cuts and back-loading costs. The real cost, according to a Republican House Budget Committee report, could be $2.4 trillion for its first decade of operation.

In its first 10 years, the bill calls for $572 billion in new taxes (including a 5.4% income surtax on anyone making more than $500,000 a year), and $426 billion in Medicare and Medicaid cuts, which will hurt seniors and the poor and could lead to rationing of care.

The Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation reported recently that the House’s legislation will whack small businesses because they would pay $153.5 billion of the surtax. Small businesses unable to provide health coverage to their workers would also pay up to 8% in new payroll taxes. This would cost them $135 billion more over the next decade, thereby diminishing their ability to create jobs.

In the House bill there is a $2 billion tax on those who already have health insurance, $20 billion in taxes on medical devices, $8 billion in taxes on anyone who buys over-the-counter drugs with money from their health-savings accounts, and $140 billion in higher taxes on drugs.

Mrs. Pelosi’s bill will drive up premiums. A family of four with an income of $78,000 would pay $13,800 for insurance a year by 2016, according to CBO. Their tab would average $11,000 without the bill.

Every American would be required to buy health insurance or be fined up to 2.5% of their income.

If they vote “yes” this albatross will be hung around the neck of every Democrat in the House – the blue dogs are particularly squeamish about it. Adding those who don’t like the abortion provision (among Democrats) and you have more than enough to defeat it. So why is Pelosi pushing it now? Like Reid, she isn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer when it comes to pure intelligence, but unlike Reid, she knows here domain and how to count votes.

How will she pull this off without some major changes or major concessions? I’m not sure, but right now, experts who are just as adept at counting votes as the whip say there aren’t enough to pass it. Watch and listen carefully as the week finishes with a scheduled vote on Saturday. If she figures out she doesn’t have the votes, we should see a delay. But if she thinks she has them, she’ll be pushing like hell to have the vote this weekend.



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3 Responses to House To Try To Pass Its Version Of Health Care This Week

  • Throw into the mix that a lot of squeamish democrats will not be inclined to make a risky vote when it’s practically certain the the bill will die in the Senate, and it seems reasonable to conclude that this bill will die a quick death absent some very naked parlimentary tricks or outright breaking the rules to keep it alive and move it forward.

    As you say, SanFran Nan is not the sharpest knife in the drawer.  Add to it the idea that she “doesn’t mind losing a few seats”.  With the prospect that the dems are going to take significant loses in next year’s election, she’s willing to EXPAND those losses?  What an idiot.  It speaks volumes about democrats that they’ve chosen this woman, along with the dullard Dingy Harry and the narcissist-in-chief, Imeme, to be their leaders.

    Rush had an interesting analysis of her motives yesterday: essentially, she is culling her herd.  Tired of trying to please fractious blue dogs and generally make even a pretense of moderation and bipartisanship (both of which are far from the basic nature of this stupid, malicious shrew), she WANTS blue dogs to go down in defeat.  In her hateful mind, it is better to deal with a Republican representative that she can openly attempt to squash than a democrat that she is forced to treat with a veneer of respect.

  • Pelosi might be okay with losing a few seats, but the people in those seats probably don’t see it the same way.  Which might well be all that saves us.

  • I think Pelosi knows this bill will never pass with the public option, death panels, abortion and coverage for illegal aliens. but her wacky left wing base is demanding all of them.  Even if the House did pass her health care, it stands no chance in the Senate.  So, Nancy says WTF, let’s give them what they want.

    The worst scenario for the democrats would be more wildly unpopular legislation rammed through congress and signed into law with zero bipartisan support.  Workers will look at their pay stubs and see Obamacare taxes withdrawn, no company health care and no pay raises.  When they open their electricity bill and see an 80% cap & trade tax and gasoline at $5 a gallon, they will understand perfectly.

    In 363 days, lots of the people who voted with her will be standing in the soup lines.  My comment, “Good.”