Thursday, October 18, 2007

A Baker’s Dozen Short, HR 986 (SCHIP) Fails to Pass on Override

If we had 13 more congressmen vote for SCHIP 10 million more children would have had health insurance. Ten Million. Hundreds of thousands in Texas.

We needed 13 and 11 Republicans and two Democrats failed to come through. The only good news here is that we now have an issue, supported by 75-80 percent of Americans, according to some polls, that we can use in swing districts to remove these uncompassionate conservatives.

The two Democrats who need to reconsider their party affiliations are Gene Taylor (MS-4) and Jim Marshall (GA-8). Taylor, the little weasel, didn’t even issue a statement on his congressional website explaining his vote. Marshall issued a statement that included this, by way of explanation.

“There’s no question that I support expanding SCHIP. But I also have an obligation to the citizens of Middle Georgia to do everything possible to make sure that the program in its final form fairly distributes the burden and fairly distributes the benefits.”

Can't have it both ways congressman. That’s Southerner codespeak for they’re taxing our poor tobacco industry unfairly. Yeah, that’s right Erskine Caldwell’s Tobacco Road is sited in Georgia.

Dennis Kucinich, by the way, came through and realized that voting to get health benefits for children was more important than making a political point.

Now the wrangling begins anew, and aptly named Charlie Rangel says that no substantive changes will be made. Quoting from the Washington Post:

“Democratic leaders were leaning toward a new version that would give Republicans face-saving alterations but no substantive change. Pelosi said she is determined to provide the resources to ensure that 10 million more children would be added to the rolls.”

The new version will never get the vote of Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) who charged that “SCHIP stands for Socialized, Clinton-style Hillarycare for Illegals and their Parents.”


It is reported though, that simply by closing a loophole that would have allowed 174,000 non-citizens to gain health insurance in this program, more fanatically anti-immigrant Republicans would be willing to come on over to the bright and sunny side of this issue. And this, apparently is the most substantive change that will be made in the new version of SCHIP.

In yesterday’s post, I asked why Bush vetoed this worthy bi-partisan bill and it came back that he needed to feel relevant again. Relevant, much like a bully feels when he kicks sand in your face at the beach. Relevant like how an unsavory person feels when he snitches on you for a minor infraction and you lose your job.

That will be Bush’s legacy.

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