Thousands rally on Capitol Hill for health care freedom

Thousands gathered on the steps of the US Capitol building today to state their opposition to Nancy Pelosi’s government-run health care bill which may be voted on as early as Saturday. The event was mostly organized and brought about by Minnesota Republican Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

Here’s a video of clips including some of the main speakers via Politico:

Report from Fox News:

As a crowd of protesters shouted “kill the bill,” House Republicans on Thursday rallied opposition against the Democrats’ health care legislation, even as President Obama touted two major endorsements from doctors and seniors groups.

The president interrupted the daily press briefing Thursday to note that the American Medical Association and AARP had just endorsed House Democrats’ health care plan.

“This is no small endorsement,” Obama said of the AARP’s backing. “They know it’s a good deal for our seniors.”

At the same time, Republicans decried the bill on the steps of Congress in a last-ditch bid to derail or at least delay the legislation heading toward a possible vote Saturday.

Thousands of protesters arrived by bus for the rally, which the GOP is calling an emergency “House Call.” The event drew the conservative “tea party” activists but unlike past rallies was officially sanctioned by House Republicans.

Republicans want those who attend to track down their elected representatives in Congress and put pressure on them to think twice about voting for the more than $1 trillion health care overhaul pushed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

“They’re going to listen,” said Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., who originally called for the rally. “The biggest voice in the United States is your voice.”

According to a new report issued by the Congressional Budget Office, the newly offered Republican plan costs fractions compared to the Democrat plan, increases availability, lowers costs and provides increased access to insurance:

This evening, CBO released a preliminary analysis of a substitute amendment to H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act, proposed by Representative John Boehner, the Republican Leader in the House of Representatives. CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimate that the amendment would reduce federal deficits by $68 billion over the 2010-2019 period; it would also slightly reduce federal budget deficits in the following decade, relative to those projected under current law, with a total effect during that decade that is in a broad range between zero and one-quarter percent of gross domestic product.

CBO anticipates that the combination of provisions in the amendment would reduce average private health insurance premiums per enrollee in the United States, relative to what they would be under current law-by 7 percent to 10 percent in the small group market, by 5 percent to 8 percent for individually purchased insurance, and by zero to 3 percent in the large group market. Those are averages, however, and they are subject to a great deal of uncertainty; some individuals and families in each market would see different results.

All this without another failing government program. Clearly it is one small step but it is a step which doesn’t destroy the private insurance market and force people onto a government insurance plan.

  • Bill Hedges

    At press conference as usual President answered no questions. With Republican plan out and non-leadership Democrat plan being worked on time is of the essence for present bill to be passed.

    Today the crowd went door to door with page from health bill asking Congress members to explain. What a great point to make.

    Saturday should be interesting.

    Nate did you fail to mention would not take 3-5 years to take effect ???

  • JD

    Isn’t this the bill that the AMA and AARP are supporting? I forget what AMA stands for? Is it the American Medical Association with 250,000 doctor membership?

    Interesting.

  • Bill Hedges

    JD

    Did you hear Obama mention this ???

    “There will be no mention in the endorsement of the AARP’s own vested financial interests in Obamacare. And there will certainly be no mention of the membership revolt that AARP’s alliances with the Left have caused.”

    How about Doctor’s protest ???

    Did Obama announce health care bill will not be posted 72 hours befor vote. I wonder if Congress members will have time to read before voting ??? I know some think it is not important !!! I do.
    …..
    “CANADA’S HEALTHCARE DISASTER”
    By Dick Morris 11.4.2009

    “After more than a decade of public healthcare with mandatory coverage, so many Canadian doctors have left the practice and so many young people have entered other fields that Canada ranks 26th of 28 developed nations in its ratio of physicians to population. Once, Canada ranked among the leaders in the number of physicians, but that was before government healthcare drove doctors out of the practice in droves.”

    “The fundamental fact is that we cannot cover 36 million new patients without more doctors and nurses, much less with the declining census of medical professionals the Canadian experience points to. A recent survey of doctors by the Pew Institute found that 45 percent of all practicing doctors would consider retiring or closing their practices if the Obama healthcare bill passes. This scarcity of medical personnel heightens the likelihood of draconian rationing, lengthy waiting lists and lower-quality medical care for all of us, particularly for the elderly.”

    “This physician shortage leads to massive and never-ending waiting lists. In 1993, for example, there was an average wait of 9.3 weeks from the time a patient got a referral from a general practitioner to the time he could see a specialist. By 1997, the wait was up to 11.7 weeks. Now it’s 17.3 weeks — over four months just to see a specialist!”

    “In Canada, unions control the entire healthcare process. In Manitoba, for example, there is an eight-month wait for colonoscopies, yet the unions do not permit weekend or evening procedures, thereby extending the waiting lists. The unions are doing to healthcare in Canada what they have done to education in America: stifling creativity, reinforcing bureaucracy and extending waiting times.”

    “Because of these long waits for colonoscopies, there is now a 25 percent higher incidence of colon cancer in Canada than in the United States. And because the leading drugs that we routinely use to treat the malady in the U.S. are banned in Canada because of their high cost, 41 percent of Canadians who get the cancer die of it, compared with only 32 percent in the United States. Overall, the cancer death rate in Canada runs 16 percent higher than in the United States. Cancer does not wait for waiting lists to clear.”

    “The potential of healthcare changes to shrink the doctor population, exacerbating scarcity and extending waits, is even worse now that it is apparent we have overestimated the number of doctors in the U.S. Where we once thought there were 840,000 doctors, the total is now estimated to be only 760,000.”

    “The proposed $400 billion cut in Medicare raises the probability that more and more of those doctors who do practice will refuse to accept Medicare patients, aggravating the doctor shortage among the elderly, the population that needs them the most.”

    “As Obama’s program moves through Congress, despite the fierce opposition of a majority of American voters in virtually all the polls, it becomes clear that those moderates who vote for it will face harsh retribution at the polls from their outraged constituents. A kind of suicide-pact mentality is gripping the Democratic majorities in Congress, akin to that which came over it when Congress passed President Bill Clinton’s tax package in 1993. This disregard for the will of the marginal voter may make sense for those who come from safe districts, but it makes none for those who come from swing districts. For them, suicidal conduct leads to political demise.”

    http://www.dickmorris.com/blog/2009/11/04/canadas-healthcare-disaster/#more-664

    “AARP to endorse government health care takeover”

    By Michelle Malkin • November 4, 2009

    “There have been several premature announcements of an AARP Obamacare endorsement over the past several months, but now it’s just about official.”

    “I heard from a source a few days ago that the endorsement was imminent and that it will be published by AARP tomorrow. The Associated Press also says its sources are telling the wire service the same thing.”

    “I’ve been told that the endorsement will argue that senior citizens will actually benefit from the government health care takeover despite a half-trillion-dollars in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid because of the House version’s subsidies for medium-income seniors; elimination of the so-called “donut hole” coverage gap; and anticipated reductions in the cost of medications. The AARP will argue to its members that the massive costs of the public option will not increase the deficit.”

    “There will be no mention in the endorsement of the AARP’s own vested financial interests in Obamacare. And there will certainly be no mention of the membership revolt that AARP’s alliances with the Left have caused.”

    “Good time for a flashback to the Dallas health care forum in August, when an AARP member confronted one of its leaders with one of the questions of the year:”

    “Do you work for us or do we work for you?”

    http://michellemalkin.com/2009/11/04/aarp-to-endorse-government-health-care-takeover/

  • Bill Hedges

    JD said “Interesting. ”

    But obama left the most “Interesting” stuff out !!!

    Did obama mention this ???

    “Two of every three practicing physicians oppose the medical overhaul plan under consideration in Washington, and hundreds of thousands would think about shutting down their practices or retiring early if it were adopted, a new IBD/TIPP Poll has found.”

    “The poll contradicts the claims of not only the White House, but also doctors’ own lobby — the powerful American Medical Association — both of which suggest the medical profession is behind the proposed overhaul.”

    “It also calls into question whether an overhaul is even doable; 72% of the doctors polled disagree with the administration’s claim that the government can cover 47 million more people with better-quality care at lower cost.”

    “The AMA, in fact, represents approximately 18% of physicians and has been hit with a number of defections by members opposed to the AMA’s support of Democrats’ proposed health care overhaul.”

    • “Four of nine doctors, or 45%, said they “would consider leaving their practice or taking an early retirement” if Congress passes the plan the Democratic majority and White House have in mind.”

    “More than 800,000 doctors were practicing in 2006, the government says. Projecting the poll’s finding onto that population, 360,000 doctors would consider quitting.”

    http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article.aspx?id=506199

    AMA only represents 18% of Doctors. Not all 18% support this bill !!!

    “Interesting”

  • Bill Hedges

    I can’t act astonished at this. I figured this was happening…

    ALL MISTAKES PRO OBAMA… HUMMM

    “1 In 6 ‘Stimulus Jobs’ Does Not Exist
    Some investigative reporting from, of all places, the Associated Press:”

    “Stimulus jobs overstated by thousands”

    By Brett J. Blackledge And Matt Apuzzo, Associated Press Writers

    WASHINGTON –” A Colorado company said it created 4,231 jobs with the help of President Barack Obama’s economic recovery plan. The real number: fewer than 1,000.”

    “A child care center in Florida said it saved 129 jobs with the help of stimulus money. Instead, it gave pay raises to its existing employees.”

    “Elsewhere in the U.S., some jobs credited to the stimulus program were counted two, three, four or even more times.”

    “The government has overstated by thousands the number of jobs it has created or saved with federal contracts under the president’s $787 billion recovery program, according to an Associated Press review of data released in the program’s first progress report.”

    “The discrepancy raises questions about the reliability of a key benchmark the administration uses to gauge the success of the stimulus. The errors could be magnified Friday when a much larger round of reports is released. It is expected to show hundreds of thousands of jobs repairing public housing, building schools, repaving highways and keeping teachers on local payrolls.”

    “The White House seized on an initial report from a government oversight board weeks ago that claimed federal contracts awarded to businesses under the recovery plan already had helped pay for more than 30,000 jobs. The administration said the number was evidence that the stimulus program had exceeded early expectations toward reaching the president’s promise of creating or saving 3.5 million jobs by the end of next year.”

    “But the 30,000 figure is overstated by thousands — at the very least by nearly 5,000, or one in six, based on AP’s limited review of some of the contracts — because some federal agencies and recipients of the money provided incorrect job counts. The review found some counts were more than 10 times as high as the actual number of jobs; some jobs were credited to stimulus spending when, in fact, none were produced.”

    “Within minutes of the publication of AP’s story, the White House released a statement that it said was the “real facts” about how jobs were counted in the stimulus data distributed two weeks ago. It said that had been a test run of a small subset of data that had been subjected only to three days of reviews, that it had already corrected “virtually all” the mistakes identified by the AP and that the discovery of mistakes “does not provide a statistically significant indication of the quality of the full reporting that will come on Friday.” …

    “As of early Thursday, on its recovery.org Web site, the government was still citing 30,383 as the actual number of jobs linked so far to stimulus spending, despite the mistakes the White House has now acknowledged and said were being corrected…”

    “It’s not clear just how far off the 30,000 claim was. The AP’s review, which was not an exhaustive accounting of all 9,000 contracts reported by the government so far, homed in on the most obvious cases of jobs wrongly tied to the stimulus because of duplications or misinterpretations of how the jobs should be counted.”

    “While the thousands of overstated jobs represent a tiny sliver of the overall economy, they represent a significant percentage of the initial employment count credited to the stimulus program…”

    “In one major miscount found by the AP review, Colorado-based Teletech Government Solutions had worked with the Federal Communications Commission to come up with a job count for its $28.3 million contract for call centers fielding consumer questions about conversion of televisions to receive digital signals. The company reported creating 4,231 jobs — the highest number listed in the first stimulus accounting — even though 3,000 of those workers received a paycheck for five weeks or less…”

    “Now the job count is being adjusted to less than 1,000, Tan said, to meet the requirement that a job reported is equal to a full-time, 40-hour-a-week position held for one year.”

    “The Toledo, Ohio-based Koring Group also received two FCC contracts to help people make the switch to digital television. The company reported hiring 26 people for each of the two contracts, bringing its total jobs to 54 on the government’s official count.”

    “But the company cited the same 26 workers for both contracts, meaning the same jobs were counted twice. The job count was further inflated because each job lasted only about two months, so each worker should have counted as one-sixth of a full-time job.”

    “The FCC spotted the problem and called company owner Steve Holland, who now says the actual job count is closer to five, not 54… ”

    “The AP’s review identified nearly 600 contracts claiming stimulus money for more than 2,700 jobs that appear to have similar duplicated counts…”

    “Barbara Moore, executive director of the Child Care Association of Brevard County in Cocoa, Fla., reported that the $98,669 she received in stimulus money saved 129 jobs at her center, though the cash was used to give her 129 employees a 3.9 percent cost-of-living raise. She said she needed to boost their salaries because some workers had left for better paying jobs…”

    “Officials at East Central Technical College in Douglas, Ga., said they now know they shouldn’t have claimed 280 stimulus jobs linked to more than $200,000 to buy three semi-trucks and trailers for commercial driving instruction, and a modular classroom and bathroom for a health education program…”

    “The number of jobs should be zero, Light said. The 280 count represents the number of students who would benefit, [Mike Light, spokesman for the Technical College System of Georgia] said.”

    “The San Joaquin, Calif., Regional Rail Commission reported creating or saving 125 jobs as part of a stimulus project to lay railroad track. Because the project drew from two pools of money, the commission reported that figure twice, bringing the total to 250.”

    “Spokesman Thomas Reeves said the commission corrected the data Tuesday and changed the total to 73, although the count is not corrected in the government’s official job tally…”

    “If the Obama administration will lie with such impunity about this, what else will they lie about?”

    “Mind you:”

    “It’s not clear just how far off the 30,000 claim was. The AP’s review, which was not an exhaustive accounting of all 9,000 contracts reported by the government so far, homed in on the most obvious cases of jobs wrongly tied to the stimulus because of duplications or misinterpretations of how the jobs should be counted.”

    “By the way, look at the kind of jobs the ’stimulus money’ went to:”

    “1,000 jobs in call centers fielding questions about television converter boxes,
    25 jobs helping people make the conversion to digital TV.
    Money for raises for 129 people at a child care center.
    Indeed, there was only one job mentioned that sounded anything at all like the promised infrastructure improvements — the 125 jobs created to lay railroad tracks.”

    “But it does seem appropriate that Obama official overseeing all of this is named DeSeve, which to us sounds a lot like ‘deceive.’”

    http://sweetness-light.com/archive/1-in-6-stimulus-jobs-was-made-up