(Jim DeMint is a Republican senator from South Carolina. This post was published on his blog.)
Less than one hour into the President Obama’s health care summit the Senate’s most powerful Democrat reminded Republicans they can jam through a takeover of the health care system no matter what’s said during the next few hours of the meeting.
In his opening statement Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat said, “reconciliation isn’t something that’s never been done before.”
By saying this, Leader Reid has shown the irreconcilable difference between the Democrats and the American people who have already rejected their plans.
Americans have said loud and clear they do not want this bill. They don’t believe trillion dollar government takeovers will lower costs, they know it will explode our debt and reduce their freedom. They don’t want government bureaucrats making decisions for them in the most personal part of their lives.
But the Democrats continue to show they aren’t listening. They have been be planning to pass their health care takeover using a complicated Senate manoeuvre, called reconciliation. This procedure was originally created to resolve budget matters, not to push through a new complex entitlement program.
The summit was held under the pretense that the President would seriously listen to Republican ideas that enjoy popular support (solutions like buying insurance across state lines, tort reform, and tax equity for those who don’t get health coverage from their employer). But by refusing to take reconciliation off the table, President Obama and Democrats are turning a deaf ear to Americans.
A CNN poll released Wednesday found 73 per cent of Americans want Washington to start over and begin working on an entirely new bill or stop work all together on health care reform.
Americans are right to be pessimistic. During President Obama’s first year in office he’s spent trillions on a failed stimulus bill and bailing out banks with nothing to show for it.
They want the government to do less, not more. And they are not sitting by quietly, they are making their voices heard in more than just polls.
They’ve rejected the Democrats big-spending agenda in the ballot booths last November by electing Republicans as governors in New Jersey and Virginia. They did it again in Massachusetts by sending Republican Scott Brown, who campaigned on being the “41st vote” to filibuster the health care takeover, to the Senate over Democrat Martha Coakley.
They’ve taken to the streets holding “tea party” protests around the nation urging the government to quit spending and start doing less, not more.
Tens of thousands of people came to the nation’s capitol last September 12 to protest the health care takeover, but President Obama couldn’t hear them. Instead of watching what was happening in his backyard the president went to Minneapolis that day to hold his own health care rally far, far away from the tea party crowd.
The Democrats didn’t listen and pushed a 2,000-page takeover bill that no member fully read. When it came up for a vote in the Senate, Democrats stuffed it full of backroom deals and kickbacks to jam it through on Christmas Eve.
Now, President Obama wants to add in even more spending and more taxes at the last minute. The Heritage Foundation estimates the true cost of the new, bigger takeover will be $2.5 trillion.
It’s obvious the Democrats aren’t listening to the voters and are dead-set on enacting big government policies over the will of the American people.
And, it looks like President Obama is on board with the plan. Otherwise, he’d put an end to the talk of using the nuclear option for government to take over one-sixth of the economy without bothering to get single Republican vote.
If President Obama and Democrats insist on ramming through this government takeover of health care that Americans have rejected over and over, then I’ll use every tool available to me in the Senate to stop it.
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