After months of repeal-and-replace failures, the Senate has a chance of passing something. It’s a great looking bill that addresses many of the problems with Obamacare. It’s clothed in some very appealing components that can get conservatives juiced up. Unfortunately, under the attractive facade lies a sad reality: it’s still just Obamacarelite.
If it can overcome some important hurdles such as getting the CBO report in time and convincing three of five potential Republican dissenters, then it should easily sail through Congress and reach the President’s desk before Thanksgiving. One of the dissenters, Senator Rand Paul, is the only one who seems willing to state the reality that it will not reduce premiums nor will it improve the quality of health coverage. It takes Obamacare and fixes a few things, but it misses completely on the part that most Americans would expect from a repeal and replace.
There’s good to this bill. It puts more power over finances and regulations in the hands of the states. It defunds Planned Parenthood. It eliminates the individual and employer mandates. All of this is great, but that it won’t slow the growth of premiums (and may actually accelerate the rise) should make this a no-go for conservatives.
It won’t. Senators who would normally be opposed to this type of legislation such as Mike Lee, Ted Cruz, and Ben Sasse will probably support it. Why? Because they need to pass something. They need a win soon. The GOP’s abysmal record since getting control of the White House means they need this in order to salvage their futures in the midterm elections.
Most Republican voters will support it. Most conservative pundits will approve. If things were going differently on Capitol Hill with a long list of strong legislation on the books, this bill would be unnecessary. They could hold out for something better such as a full-repeal that gradually cuts Obamacare to pieces over time while putting together a true free-market solution that lowers premiums and increases innovation. Instead, they’re playing politics and keeping most of Obamacare intact to mitigate election-day fallout from their failures.
I detailed the two biggest reasons this bill is unacceptable on the Federalist Party website.
There’s still a good chance it won’t pass. Mike Lee is looking at the details before deciding, but will probably accept it. It’s hard to imagine John McCain not backing Lindsey Graham’s bill. Rand Paul is a hard “no.” That means that to pass, they’ll need to convince Lisa Murkowski or Susan Collins to sign on with an outside chance of Democrat Joe Manchin crossing over. Mitch McConnell has not endorsed the bill yet, saying he’s staying out of it until they get the 50 votes they need to pass. They better hurry. If they can’t get it in under reconciliation, the bill is dead.
Until we remove DC completely from the healthcare system, we’re not going to see lower premiums. We aren’t going to see better healthcare. Don’t fall for any arguments that this bill is a first step. It’s the only step. They’ll call it a day and let this continue to eat away at our economy for years until single-payer rears its ugly head. The only way to prevent Obamacarelite from becoming Berniecare is if we get DC out of healthcare altogether.
Urgent: Will Mitch McConnell Fight For a Vote on an Eleventh-Hour Obamacare Replacement Bill? | Guy Benson, Townhall
Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) met on Tuesday afternoon with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to discuss their last-ditch ObamaCare repeal bill. Leaving the meeting in McConnell’s Capitol office, Cassidy said the leader’s message was that Graham and Cassidy need to find 50 votes for the bill on their own. “He just says we need 50 votes,” Cassidy said of McConnell…”The Leader has said publicly and repeatedly that to move forward on anything we’ll need at least 50 votes,” said McConnell spokesman Don Stewart, calling that a “consistent message.”
Republicans seven month long effort to upend the American health care system failed in late July, after three Republican senators – John McCain of Arizona, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine – shot down the party’s third and final (until now) proposal to repeal Obamacare in a contentious 49-51 vote.
New Report: Obamacare Premiums Will Go Up AGAIN. 15 Percent Hike… | Kacie Burnett, Louder with Crowder
Insurers have pleaded for more certainty on key Obamacare payments called cost-sharing reduction subsidies, which reimburse them for giving discounts to low-income patients. The Trump administration has made the payments on a month-to-month basis, but insurers want them funded on a long-term basis.
Now that socialist Bernie’s “Medicare for All” proposal has gained steam among senate Democrats, the fight for universal healthcare may become the cause celebre for the 2020 election. Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal says the plan should include funding for abortions, which would effectively make the U.S. taxpayer complicit in the mass slaughtering of unborn babies.
As President Obama would say: This isn’t my opinion. It’s the conclusion of liberals who would embrace a single-payer system if they had to recreate American health care from scratch. “A commitment to universal health coverage — bringing in the people currently falling through Obamacare’s cracks — should definitely be a litmus test,” writes Paul Krugman. “But single-payer, while it has many virtues, isn’t the only way to get there; it would be much harder politically than its advocates acknowledge; and there are more important priorities.”
If we applied the same third-party payment technique to any other segment of the economy, we would get the exact same inflationary spiral we see in health care. I buy donuts from time to time. If those donuts were free at the point of purchase, I would buy (and eat) a whole lot more than I do today. The stereotype of cops eating donuts came about because donut shops gave them away to the cops for free.
Collins seems unlikely to back the proposal because it defunds Planned Parenthood. McCain reportedly is well-disposed to the bill, which is sponsored by his pal Lindsey Graham. However, he is said to have cautioned that any repeal effort should go through the regular committee process. We’re already midway through September, which doesn’t leave much time for that.
With control of both chambers on Capitol Hill as well as the White House, there should be no reason to keep the seeds of socialized medicine that Barack Obama planted. The GOP that’s been promising to end Obamacare shouldn’t be giving us a different variation of the same thing, but that’s exactly what’s happening. The best-case-scenario if the bill passes is that we continue down the road of unnecessary financial burden on Americans. The worst-case scenario is that this will make it easier for the Democrats to implement their plan for economic oblivion, better known as single-payer.
In Lieu of what is Right – An Interview with Dr. Ken Wright
One of the most vapid and reliably anti-Constitutionalist members of Congress is known to anyone who takes to Twitter, Ted Lieu, of the California 33rd Congressional District, suddenly has a staunch conservative to square off against. I got to sit down for about an hour over the phone with Dr. Ken Wright, who was one of the most interesting interviews I’ve done this year (and after Erin Cruz, Austin Petersen, Shane Hazel, and Hunter Hill, that is saying something).
Dr. Wright is a renowned pediatric ophthalmologist who is invited to teach all over the world. For that reason (sorry doc) I thought he might have the demeanor of a college professor. Analytical without a lot of passion. I was right about the analytical part. I was dead wrong about the lack of passion. This is a man who in no way needs to run for Congress, but instead sees it as a public service that he is willing to take on to make the world better for his family and for all of ours as well. It’s probably worth noting that one of the most respected and freedom-oriented members of the Senate, Dr. Rand Paul, is also an ophthalmologist. I also have an acquaintance here in my home town who is a Constitutionalist and an ophthalmologist. There seems to be a pattern here.
I found Dr. Wright to be authentic, passionate about Constitutional freedoms, and a man who will not be bullied by anyone. He supports much of what President Trump is trying to do, however I have no trouble believing he would stand up to the President should he go off the rails. The people of the California 33rd would do well to put a man of such integrity into office, and with him get rid of one of the most staunchly anti-freedom members of the US House of Representatives, Ted Lieu.
BW: What specific experience and education make you feel makes you the most qualified to be a Congressman?
KW: With the present state of our representatives I think as long as you have a pulse you could do a better job. They’re bought. The special interest lobbyists are running the show. Any good, ethical citizen could do a better job and do what is right for the people.
**I needed to take a moment to stop laughing at this answer. It was funny because it’s true.**
I’m a pediatric ophthalmologist. I know people all over the world since I travel for teaching in my field. I was awarded a service medal from the President of Panama after Noriega was ousted due to the work I was doing there. I’m a doctor, and doctors use data and facts to make decisions. We don’t put a Band-Aid on an infection and expect it to go away. Dems in inner cities have made people dependent for more than 50 years with no way out and they end up in gangs or living on welfare. Let’s get factories into the inner-cities. Let’s get them jobs instead of food stamps and a few bucks. I want to actually solve problems instead of creating a never-ending cycle of dependency.
BW: What specific issues will be your main focus if elected?
KW: Immigration is a huge problem right now. President Trump gave Congress the job to put together a real plan for DACA and they’ve done nothing. We need a clear policy regarding immigration. To my mind we need to secure the border. Without that we have open borders. We need a wall for at least part of the southern border. It worked in Israel. Then you can think about what to do with 13 million illegals.
Whether they were invited by the government or not, many illegals came here because we wanted people to come here; we wanted them to do certain jobs like pick crops or be a housekeeper, and it would be wrong to send them all home after so many years. That said, criminals with so much as a DUI have to go. This is my problem with sanctuary cities; they allow criminal illegals to roam free and harm our citizens. This is not a Democrat or Republican problem, but rather an American problem.
The largely law abiding that we choose to let stay can get in line behind everyone else and perhaps pay some fines and do some service, but they shouldn’t be able to get to the head of the line like so many Democrats want, and they certainly shouldn’t be given blanket amnesty.
Healthcare is a big issue, mostly because the Democrats have made it that way with Obamacare. Despite what the Democrats say, there were never bodies lying in the street before Obamacare. No one is turned away from any emergency room. Everyone can get care. Not everyone needs health insurance. If you’re a 20 year old on your first job and in good health, perhaps you don’t need to spend money on health insurance, and it’s wrong for the government to force you to subsidize health insurance for others. We need to repeal McCarron-Ferguson Act which exempts insurance companies from most federal regulation including anti-trust laws. That would allow real free-market competition back.
BW: What failures do you feel have been made on the part of Ted Lieu?
**Note: I asked Dr. Wright to please try to keep this to a top 5 list… I know I could write an article just on this question**
KW: When the Syrian war was really going on he wanted to bring 200K refugees from Iraq and Syria and voted against the SAFE Act. That’s dangerous for America.
He doesn’t protect America first. He wants open borders. He’s for sanctuary cities. He votes against Kate’s Law every time it comes up. He has sponsored legislation for no-money bail, saying bail is unfair to the poor, yet judges can take that into consideration. He wants to take the discretion away from the judges.
He’s a hypocrite. On his web site the number one issue he talks about is climate change. And yet, when he was a state senator he accepted $13K from real estate developers who wanted to build a new stadium, and then he co-sponsors a bill to exempt the real estate developers from environmental regulations. He’s a career politician and has never had a real job in his life. I’ve had a real job. I’ve run a business and put people to work.
BW: What political challenges do you face and how do you plan to overcome them?
Well, District 33 is only 24% Republicans, which has discouraged the GOP and the GOP wasn’t even going to run someone in 2016. However, there’s almost 30% here with no party preference. I was able to take 37% in 2016 and I didn’t have a real organization. I have a whole organization this time and I think winning this district is doable.
BW: With the current debate over gun-control, what are your thoughts?
KW: Well this isn’t an easy issue. I think we all, or at least most, agree a civilian doesn’t need to own a surface-to-air missile. At the same time, the 2nd Amendment isn’t about hunting, it’s about being able to resist a tyrannical government. We need to find a balance. I think for certain weapons perhaps some form of mental evaluation might be in order. The problem is the Democrats always want to take it too far. Instead of making things simple and wanting to implement legislation that might actually save lives they are intent on disarming the population.
BW: There has been a lot of debate over President Trump’s tariffs. How do you feel about them.
KW: Great question. Would you agree that it is equally wrong for one to hire someone to commit murder as it is to commit murder yourself?
KW: Well by the same token, if it’s wrong for us to use slave labor to make our products, it’s equally wrong for us to allow China and other countries to use slave labor without any kind of penalty. The Chinese have a miles long factory where people were crammed into tiny rooms to live and work. It was so miserable that people were jumping to their deaths. Know what the Chinese government did? They put up nets outside the building so that people couldn’t even kill themselves to get away. It’s that miserable and yet we are profiting from it in the form of cheaper goods. You’ll notice that the President isn’t imposing these tariffs on Europe or Canada or other nations that play by the rule of civilized behavior.
BW: I’m personally very much against tariffs, but I have to admit that I never thought about it that way.
KW: Most people don’t.
BW: I ask this of all California candidates since your state pretty much has been the leader on this issue: What about legalization of Marijuana?
The half-life of marijuana is 3-4 days. If you smoke 2 or 3 times a week then the half life becomes about 2-3 weeks. Alcohol is metabolized much faster. I think it should be available but through a pharmacy, and not in smoking form. Physicians were encouraged to give more opioids for pain management and they found it to be profitable. This has led toward a lax attitude toward drugs. Marijuana should be available to those who need it, but we can’t be so careless with how it’s used.
BW: What do you want the people of the California 33rd to know about you?
KW: Both Republicans and Democrats need to realize that we are Americans first. Vote for someone who has the moral fiber to do what is right. Don’t vote for someone just because they might be at your end of the ideological spectrum.
You can learn more about Dr. Ken Wright by clicking here.
Kamala Harris: “Stop slaughtering babies! Abortions OK”
You may have missed it amid the wall-to-wall coverage of the Parkland shooting and the CNN Town Hall, but Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) has become pro-life — she just hasn’t realized it yet.
Two days after the massacre, Senator Harris told MSNBC, “We cannot tolerate a society and live in a country with any level of pride when our babies are being slaughtered.” This just two weeks after she helped defeat a 20-week abortion ban in the Senate.
Apparently, Senator Harris, a staunch pro-abortion advocate and Planned Parenthood donation recipient, couldn’t hear the cognitive dissonance, referring to deceased teenagers as “babies,” while almost one million actual babies are literally being slaughtered every year.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, the United States saw 926,200 abortions in 2014, of which Planned Parenthood claims 323,999 — about one-third. In the same year, total gun homicides (including gang and drug related, all age groups, and the tiny fraction that is mass shootings) totalled only 11,000.
926,200 to 11,000 — even 323,999 to 11,000 — is not even a close contest. Babies are being slaughtered, Kamala, but not the ones you care about.
Harris’s appeals to deceased children contributed to increasing cries for a boycott of the NRA, but pro-lifers on Twitter such as Steven Crowder and Devin Sena were quick to point out the irony of supporting a murder mill that receives over $540 million in taxpayer funding while berating a much less influential group whose purpose lies in defending basic constitutional rights and has never killed a single human being.
But let’s take Senator Harris at her word; in the aforementioned interview, she insisted, “When you see the effect of this extreme violence on a human body, and especially the body of a child, maybe it will shock some people into understanding, this cannot be a political issue. We have to be practical.”
All right then, let’s look at what happens to a baby when it’s aborted.
Below there are diagrams of abortion procedures, but no actual photographs, as even I can hardly stomach looking at that horror or putting it on my website. Here’s one in an article on partial-birth abortions, and I’m sure you can find othersfairly easily if you really want to “shock some people into understanding.”
Let’s start with partial-birth abortions, also known as “dilation and extraction,” wherein the baby (read: living human child with its own DNA) is partially delivered through the birth canal until its head gets in the way, at which stage the abortionist stabs the baby through the back of the head, vacuums out the child’s brains, causes the skull to collapse, and removes the baby-shaped tumor, deeming the operation a success.
Next up is dilation and evacuation, a slight variant of the previous process, whereby the clump-of-cells-with-a-unique-heartbeat-and-pain-receptors is arbitrarily snipped to pieces by an abortionist with a toothy clamp and the leech’s body parts are ripped from the womb one at a time until he (or most likely “she” in many cultures) has fully exited the birth canal.
You may notice that I employed varying levels of sarcasm throughout that discussion, as this is and ought to be an intensely difficult topic to discuss. It’s disturbing, horrifying, and disheartening.
But Senator Harris is right, even if in the wrong way. We cannot just stand by as babies are being slaughtered, and if takes brutally direct language and agonizing photographs to “shock some people into understanding,” then so be it.
Almost one million babies are murdered in the United States every year. If that fact is less viscerally disgusting to me than seeing a picture of a premature child, then that’s a problem I need to work on.
The Guardian: Pro-lifers are “pro-death”
Today, on the 45th anniversary of Roe Vs. Wade, The Guardian published an article entitled, “Let’s call pro-lifers what they are: pro-death.”
The article states that the pro-life movement has, by adopting its very name, caused “the battle over reproductive rights” to take on “an apocalyptic tone.” This rhetoric, the article states, “turns every clash between the two sides [pro-life vs. pro-abortion] into a prelude to Armageddon, the final showdown between life and death, good and evil.”
It is only by using debunked and “mythological claim that abortion is a risk factor for breast cancer, lifelong depression and suicide,” the article claims, pro-lifers claim that they are protecting the lives of both the unborn and the mothers. The article does not acknowledge “academic studies dating back to the 1950s show that abortion increases the risk of breast cancer,” as were noted last year in the highly respected journal First Things, nor does the Guardian article acknowledge what psychologists have termed Post-Abortion Syndrome (PAS).
“We should take back the mantle of life.”
Using a 2015 article from NPR, the Guardian claims that “the US now bears the ghastly distinction of having the highest maternal mortality rate of all the world’s wealthy democracies.” The Guardian article maligns the maternal mortality rate in the United States, linking the mortality rate with laws imposing abortion restrictions.
Contrary to the article’s claim that maternal mortality rate is directly related to restrictions on abortions, however, the CIA World Factbook shows multiple countries which, having more restrictions on abortion than the US, have lower maternal mortality rates. These countries include Norway, Denmark, Poland, Sweden, Austria, and Germany, to name just a few.
The authors proceed to list various circumstances that may lead to the death of the mother. For example:
“Take the not-at-all-hypothetical case of a woman who wants an abortion because of a pre-existing health condition, like diabetes, that could lead to problems with pregnancy…”
The article concludes with the following exhortation.
“And surely the time has come to raise the charge that the “pro-life” movement is, in effect, pro-death.”
Ever since the anti-abortion movement claimed the “pro-life” label in the 1970s, the battle over reproductive rights has taken an apocalyptic tone. If the anti-abortion side is pro-life, then the other side – the millions of women who rally every January to keep abortion legal and safe – must be composed of the gaunt, gray-winged handmaidens of death.
This polarizing rhetoric turns every clash between the two sides into a prelude to Armageddon, the final showdown between life and death, good and evil. When charged with caring only for life in its fetal form, the anti-abortion side hoists its mythological claim that abortion is a risk factor for breast cancer, lifelong depression and suicide. Thus they can say that they do not only save fetal lives, but the lives of the women who carry these fetuses.
If I had to sum up a pro-lifer’s response to this article in one word, it would be celebration.
The pro-life movement is the only movement dominated, run, and lead by women; the only movement dedicated solely to saving lives and caring for women. The “pro-lifers” have earned their name with righteous labor and a glorious mission.
This is a battle “between life and death, good and evil.”
The fact the pro-abortion advocates are now attempting to re-frame “pro-lifers” as being “pro-death” shows the world precisely how effective the pro-life movement has been.
Make no mistake: this effort towards re-branding is nothing other than a sign of weakness.
This, I believe, is worth celebrating!