House Republicans aim to kill Democratic health bill

November 2, 2009

Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives are gearing up for an epic battle against the sweeping healthcare reform that Democratic leaders hope to bring to the House floor for debate later this week.

boehner“Our goal is to make this as difficult as possible to vote for it,” said House Republican Leader John Boehner. “We think this bill is the wrong prescription for what ails our healthcare system in America.”

Representative Mike Pence, who heads the House Republican Conference, said the campaign against the bill unveiled last week by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi began over the weekend with Republican members delivering copies of the huge 1,990-page bill to public libraries. Also, Republican women are speaking against the bill this week on the House floor.

“It is a fact that 85 percent of healthcare decisions in this country are made by American women,” Pence said.

On Thursday, House Republicans plan a special Internet town hall meeting. Pence said the discussion with participants will last at least 12 hours.

“Our members are going to stand on principle against Speaker Pelosi’s trillion dollar government takeover of our healthcare system,” Boehner said.

Republicans plan to offer a far less sweeping alternative to the Democratic bill. Boehner said it will focus on reducing the cost of health insurance.

The proposal will allow individuals and businesses to purchase insurance across state lines and to form pools to buy insurance. It will also seek to limit malpractice lawsuits, which Republicans say lead to higher healthcare costs.

The Republican bill will also encourage states to look over their own insurance laws and mandates to find ways to lower costs.

“Many states don’t realize that mandates in their own laws actually drive up the cost of health insurance,” Boehner said.

The Republican bill will not include the sweeping insurance market reforms contained in the Democratic bill, which would bar insurers from excluding people from coverage or charging more because of medical history.

Instead, the Republican bill would provide some federal money to help states create high risk insurance pools where those people could obtain coverage, Boehner said.

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Photo credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst (House Republican Leader John Boehner plays golf with Tiger Woods.)


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Republicans are for the philosophy that it is acceptable to bleed the American people up to the point that they’ve sacrificed all they can to afford health care, but not to push them over that line, (sure, some will inevitably cross that line, whether due to illness or bankruptcy, but the idea is to keep as many as possible teetering on the edge of throwing in the towel, without actually doing so). This is their idea of doing what’s right. In fact, I’m sure it IS right, for them and for their families. They’ve long given up the notion that they are there to serve ALL of their constituents.

Posted by Biff | Report as abusive

This is a false controversy. It is a fact (you can do the math) that not one single republican vote is necessary to pass health care reform. The democrats in both the house and senate have all the votes they need to force this plan on us.

It is a fact that the democrats are the ones who will keep this lousy excuse of a health reform plan from becoming law. The democrats are the problem, not the republicans.

Our survival as a nation depends on this 1 trillion plus health care fiasco from becoming law I am rooting for the democrats who don’t want this to pass to stand their ground and vote NO.

Hopefully tomorrows election will provide a big exclamation mark!!!

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

Okay, all you ass**** Republicans, just what is YOUR solution to the healthcare crisis? What is your plan for lowering healthcare premiums, the costs of a doctor’s visit, prescription medicines, etc.? I’ll bet your so-called solution is no better than that of these ass**** Democrats. All you Rush Limbaughs, Glenn Becks, Seann Hannitys, and Ann Coulters can do is scream bloody murder when the opposition has a plan and you don’t. Why the hell don’t you just shut up!

Posted by Mufaso | Report as abusive

Sorry Obama.

It’s your policy, so you can pass it with your supermajority. And the democrats can take all the blame if the policy falls apart.

If you want to fritz with American healthcare, then go ahead. But it is a bit rude to expect the Republicans to help play the patsy.

Posted by Anon | Report as abusive

Still the Party of No. Boehner is still the Eternal Suntan of the Spotless Mind. TC, you presume the Democrats vote in lockstep like the Repos do and did for the last eight years for their boy Bush no matter how hare-brained his proposal.

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive

Republicans are good at killing things. In fact, they enjoy it.

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive

borisjimbo,can you imagine two boxers in a boxing ring waiting for the verdict from the judges.In one corner you have GM, given a huge amount of bailout money,and control handed over to the trade union movement.In the other corner Ford, refused bailout money and making a billion dollar profit this quarter.Can you see an analogy?i know it might be difficult but this is what conservatives believe will occur with the Democratic Consumer Health Care plan or plans.Yes there needs to be reform but first take the socialist agenda out of the ring.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

[…] groups are preparing to battle out these issues, one thing remains constant, women are a force that both democrats and republicans want on their side.  The House Democrats were paying attention when drafting their health plan, […]

Posted by The House Democrats’ Health Care Plan Revealed- Affects to Women’s Access to Health Uncertain : HEALTH REFORM WATCH | Report as abusive

Mufaso and borisjimbo, did even you read the article?

To learn part of the Republican plan to reform health care in America, read paragraphs 8, 9, 11, and 12.

Posted by realmerv | Report as abusive

I don’t care if you’re a dem or a republican, this is a bad bill. If you think 1900 pages of language only a lawyer can understand will be good for you, I urge you to get help…the republicans are going to debut their answer and it might take some time, after all what is the rush???

Posted by R Kelly | Report as abusive

This is absolutely incredible. Only one president ago we went into debt by trillions of dollars so that we could send our children to bleed and die on foreign soil. We went after someone who didn’t even attack us.

For this we spent money hand over fist and waved the flag with pride. Now we have a president that wants to ensure that every citizen has access to a doctor and health care when ever they need it, but now the cost is a factor?

Some people say that Bin Laden is still alive. So all that money and blood we spilled was for NOTHING. If you don’t want to be covered by universal health care then go move to Africa. There you can be as self reliant as you want. You can’t even SEE a doctor for miles around. You folks against public health should go there.

Posted by Benny Acosta | Report as abusive

Why do you feel the responsibility of hard working Americans to pay for healthcare for obama/pelosi supporters? Why must I be taxed more for people who won’t work. Like unemployment, you will never go back to work once you start receiving healthcare and unemployment checks. What is your inspiration for success? Handouts will kill this country. How about healthcare for children and senior, like President Bush enacted, and healthcare for the other 25 million people on a scheduled drop, like unemployment…WITH NO EXTENSIONS!! Stop whining like little wussies, stop being bums and get a job.

Posted by Robert NYC | Report as abusive

What reason do so called conservatives have for wanting to avoid public health? So far the only reasons sighted have been to avoid government control and to avoid hurting insurance businesses. Both of these argument are far too weak to give any compelling reason to avoid a public health option.

If the private sector can guarantee quality health care for every citizen regardless of ability to pay, then they have something to bring to the table. But if all they’ve got is doom and gloom about the business sector then their opinions should count for nothing.

Health is a RIGHT. It’s not a commodity to be bought and sold. We already have socialized police and fire protection. How well do you suppose we’d fair if only those that paid for that protection got it? It wouldn’t work.

So unless the argument against public health can offer something substantive those taking such a position should really just keep silent. The health of my loved ones is not a commodity to be handed off to the lowest bidder. The lives of those I love are not to be bought and sold like so much merchandise.

We are not animals. And we should not be content to live as such.

Posted by Benny Acosta | Report as abusive

I am a middle-aged,caucasian,wife & mother who has never blogged in her life…barely can use a computer. I cannot explain how sick I am of the fat, white, RICH, old-boy network that has been making choices for me for my lifetime. I hope that [with Sarah Palin’s help] the Old White Boy Club will self-destruct!!!!

Posted by Heather Lowe | Report as abusive

Conservatives are worried not that Obama’s health care initiatives might fail, but that THEY MIGHT SUCCEED. As they knew in their scorched earth effort to block Bill Clinton’s health care efforts starting in 1993, conservatives know today that that a victory for President Obama would earn his party the thanks of a grateful public and guarantee Democratic majorities for generations. As with their staunch opposition to Social Security and Medicare, programs which successfully reduced poverty among the elderly, conservatives now want to stop at all costs the third pillar of the Democratic social contract, providing quality, affordable healthcare to all American citizens.

Posted by getplaning | Report as abusive

It amazes me to see how easy it is for Americans to disregard the achievements of other developed countries in dealing with similar problems in their health systems.

Benefiting from others’ experiments is the most cost efficient way of tackling a problem. If you do not believe me, ask China.

Posted by M | Report as abusive

There’s not a responsible American Citizen that wouldn’t want health care availability for every one of his fellow citizens of this great Republic. The bills put forth so far by the leftist radicals in Congress do nothing but grow government in the form of TAX PAYER FUNDED JOBS that will increase in numbers and costs through the years just like every other government program. Our federal government’s track record stinks when it comes to running or managing social programs, be it for individuals or companies. Just look at what the government programs have done to the native americans, one of the most managed group of people in the history of this nation! Call your Congressman and tell him/her you oppose this larcenous attempt on our freedoms, liberties, and tax dollars. You can’t keep quiet anymore!

Posted by Gary, TX | Report as abusive

Only foolish and stupid countrymen listened to these republican pundits.
Threatening it’s own people to block the health care reform bill…….wake up America….we arent stupid for crying out loud.Compassionateless and ruthless republican party with a death panel fabricating palin in tow….wake up America.

Posted by Carol Dijkhuyzen | Report as abusive

I have only one thing to say. When has the federal government done anything right. Social Security is going broke. Medi-care is going broke. Do you not understand we cannot pay for everyone? Stupid people, think for yourself. Health care is not a right. Please read the constitution and let me know where it is written.

Posted by Louis, MS | Report as abusive

Louis, it’s in the 9th and 14th Amendments. The Equal Protection Clause states that everyone is to be treated equally. However, when we see the actual results of our broken medical system, it is obvious that there is gross inequality in our medical system that is completely contrary to the principles of the 14th Amendment. Wealthy people are able to get treatment for their medical conditions, but even a $100,000 income can be wiped out by exhorbitant medical bills. Thus, there is a fundamental inequality within our system that flies in the promise of equality granted by the 14th Amendment. The basic premise of the Bill of Rights is that everybody should be allowed to pursue their own lives in peace and security. Yet an unequal health care system deprives people of the right to live their own lives in peace and comfort as set forth in the Bill of Rights.

There is another reason why health care is a basic human right under the Equal Protection Clause — The establishment of a for-profit health care system is based on the premise that some lives are more valuable than others. We fought a Civil War in order to prove that all lives were equal. The Civil Rights legislation of the 1960’s was based on the premise that all lives were equal. But the premise of our for-profit health care system is that all lives are equal, but some lives are more equal than others.

Posted by researcher | Report as abusive