It boiled down to the government has the right levy a tax. But considering that the government already has multiple social welfare programs going involving health care -- from Medicare to Medicaid to veterans' health care, etc. -- I was always more surprised that people were fighting the legality of it in court rather than hashing it out in Congress to modify the existing law. But in a 5-4 decision where Chief Justice John Roberts joined Justices Elena Kagan, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor in upholding the law, the signature legislation of the Obama Administration was allowed to remain unchanged. The descending votes came, unsurprisingly from Justices Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, who felt the law was an overreach and should have been struck down completely.
Entries in healthcare debate (26)
There was a lot of craziness going on in the latest GOP debate, hosted by CNN and the Tea Party, most of it involving the various candidates playing wack-a-mole with Texas Gov. Rick Perry. But the most startling moment was during a hypothetical question posed by Wolf Blitzer about a 30-something, once healthy uninsured guy who didn't buy insurance when he could afford it, but got really sick and might die. Should we should let him die? While Ron Paul was trying to give his "go to a church for help if you're uninsured and dying of an illness answer" (more on that later), the crowd got a little restless and cheered for letting the dude die.
Congrats, Democrat Kathy Hochul! You just won one of the most conservative districts in upstate New York! She beat GOP contender Jane Corwin for the seat famously vacated by a randy representative who got his rocks off by sending a friend of mine cell phone camera pictures of himself, then ... later, started e-flirting with transsexual prostitutes. He also liked to party with lady lobbyists, making House Speaker John Boehner all frowny faced. But he stepped down and went into hiding before it got really ugly. Instead it was the GOP who took the heat as the Medicare debate killed their chances in a district that should have been a lock.
A federal judge in Florida declared President Obama's healthcare reform was "unconstitutional" because of something-something. It really doesn't matter. This was part of about 26 random state lawsuits against the bill ever since it became law. (The Federal government has argued that state's cannot just sue this thing away, but the ruling will get bumped up to the Supreme Court, so that should be fun.) I think the judge was arguing the landmark legislation wasn't legal because folks would have to sign on for the health insurance program in 2014, via the "individual mandate." Of course, based on this logic, folks should be able to declare their car insurance payments unconstitutional, but, believe me, if the government didn't require car insurance, a whole lot of people would be using that $50 to $100 per month State Farm payment playing online bingo and/or beer. But MANDATE! STATES RIGHTS! OBAMA-SCARE! FLORIDA! ALL-CAPS! (TheLoop21.com)
In a fiery presser on Capitol Hill Thursday where he at times seemed visibly frustrated, South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn blasted members of the Democratic base who were withdrawing support, money during the Midterm elections. He said those Liberal and progressive critics who get stuck on things like the health care bill not being exactly what they wanted lose sight of the long battle.
"I don't understand this notion that if I can't get everything right now then there's no tomorrow," Clyburn said.
Health care reform passed so naturally some folks didn't take ending up on the losing end of the debate well. I mean, when the opposition is painting reform as Mediscare 2: The Socialist Scarypants Thingy, and you have the likes of Glenn Beck and other fearmongerers rabble rousing a few loose screws are bound to take this to irresponsible, illegal, death-threat levels.
From TPM Muckracker:
Vandals smashed doors and windows at five Democratic offices around the country in the days surrounding the landmark House health care vote Sunday night, and a right-wing blogger in Alabama is taking credit for starting a so-called "window war."
As I said early on in the debate when people were painting swastikas on folks offices, I don't understand how "health care for everyone" turns into a beatdown offense. At least during the Civil Rights Movement it was about racism and we're all familiar with how violent anything having to do with race in this country can get. But health care? You want to go all 1960s style spitting and rock throwing over health care? Were you just bored? What do you seriously think is going to happen?
Oh yeah. That. I forgot about that. People actually kind of believed that one. So ... we're all doomed. Sorry.
While President Obama was making history by signing bills into law and just breathing while being leader of the free world (as always), something horrible was happening to my poor Mittens. And by Mittens, I'm talking Mitt "Mr. Insincerity" Romney. The Romninator. Guy Smiley. The Merry Mormon.
Longtime readers know that I, The Snob, have a soft spot for the swarmy, horrible lying charm of one Mitt Romney. I find his inability to be sincere fascinating. I love how his hair doesn't move. I love how he thinks taking pictures with his sleeves rolled up shows that this multi-millionaire is really just a "regular dude." You know? He sips his lattes out of a paper cup with a sippy cover just like EVERYONE ELSE, y'all. And Mittens always has the most fantastic adventures -- like getting into slap boxing fights with rappers and such. What's NOT to love? (Other than his abysmal approach to politics.)
While to certain establishment Republicans, Mittens is some sort of genetically engineered politibot, destined to return them to victory in 2012 (be still Ann Coulter's shriveled black heart!), the reality is everyone kind of hates Mittens. He's not particularly likable. When he tries to be funny his jokes come off stale and flat. When he tries to be relateable he comes off as distant and privileged. And when he tries to be down with the Negroes it's HILARIOUS, but ... no. It's bad. Just bad. Still, I can't help but feel sorry for Mittens.
The look on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's face is priceless. And somewhere I can hear Papa Snob's obvious men's fashion commentary. "He should have worn a red tie! Red tie means power!" (Fact: I don't think my father owns a blue tie of any kind.) I'm sure he said this after he applauded the President for gettin' thangs done. In other news, Vice President Mad Dawg Joe Biden (or just Crazy Grandpa Joe for those who love him), reportedly told the President this was a "big fucking deal" while his microphone was still hot. Gotta love that Joe. (Photo via Daylife)
Happy Health Care Reform Day, y'all!
As some of you may recall, I didn't blog much about health care because of the fact that I can't talk about it without going into a blind, frothing rage and that's just not healthy. I'm for health care reform. And I was for the most sweeping of health care reform (universal, single-payer, blah, blah), so it was hard to watch the bill get kicked around and widdled down and pissed on while Tea Baggers danced with their "Obama Iz a Socializt" banners in the sunlight without RAGE creeping over me. Hearing folks say "keep government out of my Medicare." RAGE!!!!! It just wasn't good for me. So I spent my Sunday night not watching C-SPAN, but getting drunk with my friend Savvy at Little Miss Whiskey's Golden Dollar for Sunday School with my girl Kristi Love. They had RIBS and drinks called "The Awesomeness!" But that didn't mean I didn't pay attention! And what do you know? The President won one (just barely) as Congress passed the most sweeping reform legislation in forty years. No Republicans voted for the bill (surprise, surprise), but the Democrats managed to pull this one out, so they can take this brief moment to pimp walk around the Capitol Building all day long -- Senator Burris style, doing the George Jefferson walk.
Then ... back to work!
(Photo via New York Times)