Friday, June 27, 2008

For the Want of One Senate Vote Medicare Bill is Killed

Now we can blame Texas Senator John Cornyn for denying Medicare benefits to countless elderly Americans and those with low-income. Why not? That’s what Democratic nominee for US Senate Rick Noriega is doing.

It makes sense because this is an election year for “Big Bad John” and he gets to have the immediate benefit of an enraged electorate during the worst year, ever, to be a Republican in congress.

From Noriega’s memo:

"Today's vote is simply unconscionable. John Cornyn's vote has jeopardized access to health care for thousands of elderly Texans," Noriega said. According to the Texas Medical Association, 58 percent of Texas physicians will have no choice but to limit the number of new Medicare patients they treat. Noriega said Cornyn's actions will forcemore and more physicians out of the Medicare program."

"Instead of standing up for Texas' patients and physicians to fix Medicare's flawed payment system, Cornyn has once again put partisan politics and the profits of private, for-profit Medicare HMOs ahead of the needs of Texas seniors."

Last night, the bill, HR 6331 came up in the Senate for a cloture vote, the vote that gets a bill out of debate and put up for a vote. They needed 60% of 98 senators what with McCain on the campaign trail and Kennedy on the mend from brain surgery. That’s 59 votes.

They got 58.

Now one can argue that Kay Bailey also voted no and Cornyn can hide behind her skirts pointing at her stammering “So did she!” And one can also argue that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is equally responsible, his being the one lone Democratic Nay vote (yeah, what’s with that?). But Texans can’t control Reid’s Nevada vote. They can, and should do something in the immediate sense about Cornyn’s. Kay Bailey can’t be touched until she decides to run for Governor in ’10, but we have some immediate recourse with the junior senator from Texas.

So yeah, let’s put the blame for the whole catastrophe right at John Cornyn’s door. After all one should reap what one sows when they step on America’s Third Rail.

No comments: