Yes, a new bill for the public option to be added to healthcare reform is HR 4789! Call your member of Congress NOW at (202) 225-3121 and sign the petition. Remind any who said they supported the public option that you fully understand the meaning of the word hypocrisy. If only we could have the legislators do what the majority of the people in this country want. It used to be we could call those who were pulling the strings of our legislators, economy, and the White House the invisible government, but they aren't so invisible any more. I have Medicare, so I know the program has some problems. What in this country that helps the common people couldn't have problems? Those who hold the real power and wealth designed it that way. If there were a lot more people on Medicare contributing premiums the funding problems would be helped immensely. There would be younger people with less health problems to contribute who would not be taking a large amount out of the funding, unless they had a catastrophic problem. Programs designed to detect specific problems could be used to not only decrease costs, but help people stay healthier. Really the most effective cost control for healthcare is going to be teaching people how to live healthier lifestyles, getting the unhealthy crap out of our food supply, decreasing toxins, and getting the cost of produce down. Right now the people who have Medicare are the elderly and those on disability. This means a large percentage of those on the Medicare rolls are big consumers of healthcare. Even though most of us paid into the system for 30-50 years the cost of healthcare skyrocketed. The key to funding is a large number of healthy individuals contributing premiums as insurance against if or when they become ill.

It is clear the Democrats never really intended to include a public option to begin with. Watch the Hand, watch the hand....

From Salon by Glenn Greenwald:

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about what seemed to be a glaring (and quite typical) scam perpetrated by Congressional Democrats: all year long, they insisted that the White House and a majority of Democratic Senators vigorously supported a public option, but the only thing oh-so-unfortunately preventing its enactment was the filibuster: sadly, we have 50 but not 60 votes for it, they insisted. Democratic pundits used that claim to push for "filibuster reform," arguing that if only majority rule were required in the Senate, then the noble Democrats would be able to deliver all sorts of wonderful progressive reforms that they were truly eager to enact but which the evil filibuster now prevents. In response, advocates of the public option kept arguing that the public option could be accomplished by reconciliation -- where only 50 votes, not 60, would be required -- but Obama loyalists scorned that reconciliation proposal, insisting (at least before the Senate passed a bill with 60 votes) that using reconciliation was Unserious, naive, procedurally impossible, and politically disastrous.

But all those claims were put to the test -- all those bluffs were called -- once the White House decided that it had to use reconciliation to pass a final health care reform bill. That meant that any changes to the Senate bill (which had passed with 60 votes) -- including the addition of the public option -- would only require 50 votes, which Democrats assured progressives all year long that they had. Great news for the public option, right? Wrong. As soon as it actually became possible to pass it, the 50 votes magically vanished. Senate Democrats (and the White House) were willing to pretend they supported a public option only as long as it was impossible to pass it. Once reconciliation gave them the opportunity they claimed all year long they needed -- a "majority rule" system -- they began concocting ways to ensure that it lacked 50 votes.

All of that was bad enough, but now the scam is getting even more extreme, more transparent. Faced with the dilemma of how they could possibly justify their year-long claimed support for the public option only now to fail to enact it, more and more Democratic Senators were pressured into signing a letter supporting the enactment of the public option through reconciliation; that number is now above 40, and is rapidly approaching 50. In other words, there is a serious possibility that the Senate might enact a public option if there is a vote on it, because it's very difficult for these Senators to vote "No" after pretending all year long -- on the record -- that they supported it. In fact, The Huffington Post's Ryan Grim yesterday wrote: "the votes appear to exist to include a public option. It's only a matter of will."

The one last hope for Senate Democratic leaders was to avoid a vote altogether on the public option, thereby relieving Senators of having to take a position and being exposed. But that trick would require the cooperation of all Senators -- any one Senator can introduce a public option amendment during the reconciliation and force a vote -- and it now seems that Bernie Sanders, to his great credit, is refusing to go along with the Democrats' sham and will do exactly that: ignore the wishes of the Senate leadership and force a roll call vote on the public option.

So now what is to be done? They only need 50 votes, so they can't use the filibuster excuse. They don't seem able to prevent a vote, as they tried to do, because Sanders will force one. And it seems there aren't enough Senate Democrats willing to vote against the public option after publicly saying all year long they supported it, which means it might get 50 votes if a roll call vote is held. So what is the Senate Democratic leadership now doing? They're whipping against the public option, which they pretended all year along to so vigorously support:

If -- as they claimed all year long -- a majority of Congressional Democrats and the White House all support a public option, why would they possibly whip against it, and ensure its rejection, at exactly the moment when it finally became possible to pass it? If majorities of the House and Senate support it, as does the White House, how could the inclusion of a public option possibly jeopardize passage of the bill?

I've argued since August that the evidence was clear that the White House had privately negotiated away the public option and didn't want it, even as the President claimed publicly (and repeatedly) that he did. And while I support the concept of "filibuster reform" in theory, it's long seemed clear that it would actually accomplish little, because the 60-vote rule does not actually impede anything. Rather, it is the excuse Democrats fraudulently invoke, using what I called the Rotating Villain tactic (it's now Durbin's turn), to refuse to pass what they claim they support but are politically afraid to pass, or which they actually oppose (sorry, we'd so love to do this, but gosh darn it, we just can't get 60 votes). If only 50 votes were required, they'd just find ways to ensure they lacked 50. Both of those are merely theories insusceptible to conclusive proof, but if I had the power to create the most compelling evidence for those theories that I could dream up, it would be hard to surpass what Democrats are doing now with regard to the public option. They're actually whipping against the public option. Could this sham be any more transparent?

For Greenwald's updates.....

Alan Grayson is the Democrat who introduced a bill for the public option.
 From Huffpo:

Health care reform – here’s where we are. The House of Representatives is about to vote on a Senate bill without a public option. It looks like the reconciliation amendment will not have a public option. The House bill had a public option, but once the House passes the Senate bill, that’s history.

Which is why I introduced H.R. 4789, the Public Option Act. This simple four-page bill lets any American buy into Medicare at cost. You want it, you pay for it, you’re in. It adds nothing to the deficit; you pay what it costs.

Let’s face it. Health insurance companies charge as much money as possible, and they provide as little care as possible. The difference is called profit. You can’t blame them for it; that’s what a corporation does. Birds got to fly, fish got to swim, health insurers got to rip you off. And if you get really expensive, they’ve got to pull the plug on you. So for those of us who would like to stay alive, we need a public option.

In many areas of the country, one or two insurers have over 80% of the market. They can charge anything they want. And when you get sick, they can flip the bird at you. So we need a public option.

And they face no real competition because it costs billions of dollars just to set up a national health care network. In fact, the only one that’s nationwide is . . . Medicare. And we limit that to one-eight of the population. It’s like saying that only seniors can drive on federal highways. We really need a public option.

And to the right-wing loons who call it socialism, we say, “if you want to be a slave to the insurance companies, that’s fine. If you want 30% of your premiums to go to ‘administrative costs’ and billion-dollar bonuses for insurance CEOs who figure out new and creative ways to deny you the care you need to stay healthy and alive, that’s fine. But don’t you try to dictate to me that I can’t have a public option!”

And there is a way left to get it. By insisting on a vote on H.R. 4789. Three votes on health care, not two. The Senate bill, the reconciliation amendments, and the Public Option Act.

We got 50 co-sponsors for this bill in two days. Including five powerful committee chairman. But we need more.

Sign our Petition at WeWantMedicare.com.

Call. Write. Visit. Do whatever you can do to get you Congressman to co-sponsor this bill, and push it to a vote. Right now, before it’s too late.

Let’s do it! 

List of the contributions senators got from the insurance industry:


Anonymous said...

Bravo,Bravo Bravo Alan G is right if those on the other side want to keep their insurance let them but lets not stop others from their choice of the type of insurance they choose to have.it is already set up and ready to go.Will cost nothing to implement and could take effect almost immediately.

Anonymous said...

There. How hard was that, eh? Way to go.