Health Care Bill Being Negotiated in Secret
Does it bother anyone else that the health care bill is being crafted by three senators and a handful of White House officials, with no input from the Republican leadership? The Washington Times offers an excellent article today exposing the refusal of the Democrats to allow any participation by the Republicans. The closed door approach also leaves out the American people, who will be affected by whatever eventually passes.
Remember how during the campaign, candidate Obama promised the ultimate in transparency? For example, he told a town hall audience in Chester, Va., in August 2008,
"I'm going to have all the negotiations around a big table," "We'll have the negotiations televised on C-SPAN, so that people can see who is making 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."
Well, that’s not quite what’s happening and whether you voted for him or not, this ought to concern you. So far, the only parties to the Senate discussion are Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus of Montana, and Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut, who led the work on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee bill. White House officials seen attending the meetings include Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, health care "czar" Nancy-Ann DeParle, and Peter Orszag, director of the Office of Management and Budget. Republican leaders have been summarily uninvited, and no bill has been posted for either the American people or the rest of the Congress to review.
Folks, this is not how government should be conducted. This bill will affect one sixth of our economy and every American (and more than a few illegal’s). If you're my age, the outcome is going to affect you, your aging parents, and your children and grandchildren. It will contain something that everyone will hate, and little that most of us will like. If you agree, be sure to write your representatives and express your outrage. If you are anywhere near the Tea Party route, consider showing up with your sign. You can find a schedule here.