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Senators Strike Deals In Exchange For Healthcare Votes

December 23, 2009 by  

Senators strike deals in exchange for healthcare votesThe Senate’s version of the healthcare bill took a giant step toward passage after several deals were made with moderate Democratic Senators in exchange for key votes.

Senator Mary Landrieu apparently received a $100 million Medicaid deal just for Louisiana—she bragged it was actually $300 million, according to CBSNews.com.

The deal was so disreputable to Republicans, they gave it a name. "We have new words in our lexicon, the Louisiana Purchase," said Senator John McCain from Arizona.

Joe Lieberman, an Independent from Connecticut, was able to strip the bill of a government insurance program in exchange for his vote.

"And it’s a shame that the only way we can come to consensus in this country is to buy votes," said Republican Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, quoted by the news source.

The most notorious deal may have been achieved by Ben Nelson of Nebraska, who agreed to lend his support to the Democratic cause in exchange for stricter regulations on abortion coverage in the healthcare bill.

The deal reached by Nelson would allow people to purchase insurance plans with abortion coverage, but would force them to write two premium checks—one to cover their plan and the other to cover potential abortion procedures. Individual states could also decree that no plans including abortion coverage would be offered.

The compromise has been criticized by pro-life and pro-choice supporters alike.

"It’s being attacked by both sides, not because it’s so moderate but because it’s crazy," said Richard Doerflinger, a spokesman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, quoted by the Washington Post.

Sara Rosenbaum, a George Washington University professor who thinks the language is too restrictive echoes that sentiment: "None of how this is supposed to work is even remotely in the bill, so I don’t know what people are thinking about it."
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  • K. Mann

    I sent this to the national association of attorney generals (NAAG) because I felt compelled to do something after der Furer foisted this upon people who might prefer to buy groceries or have their car repaired if they had any extra money to spend each month. Hopefully our states attorney’s generals will consider filing charges against any and all politicians who took part in vote buying and selling. Here is the address in case others want to express their views on this travesty.

    http://www.naag.org/contact.php

    Dear Sir(s). Hello. I’m writing to you as a concerned commoner, a God fearing honest hard working taxpaying American who’s been watching my tax dollars be tossed about daily in exchange for a vote on this or that bill or pet project, and quite frankly I’m tired of it. And so I have a question about this that I hope you will address that may put an end to such shenanigans in Washington and around the country, and perhaps it will even require a recount on the latest healthcare vote. Please give this some careful consideration and by all means bring it up before other lawful minds to discuss.

    Q. If a prostitute offered sex to a politician in exchange for a favor or for that politicians vote in a certain direction, would it be legal? And if a gangster like Al Capone or John Ghotti had offered a politician a ‘gift’ which would afford some political clout within that politicians district in exchange for their vote, would it be legal? Or similarly, if a politician had already declared their intention to vote a particular way on a certain law or bill, and a billionaire such as George Sorros stepped in and offered that politician something of interest to the politician, such as a new factory or large construction contract for their district in exchange for the politician changing their vote, would that be legal?

    A. I would think the answer to all three of these questions would be ‘no’ and that any such actions; to either extend such an offer or to accept the offer, would be equally criminal, and I believe that any reasonable person would call any such offers nothing less than a bribe.

    So why then is it deemed acceptable for our political ‘employees’ to extend or accept such bribes from anyone in exchange for their vote? Is the president of the United States above the law so that he can offer tax payer – our money – in exchange for getting his own way? And are our congressman and senators so above the law so that they can ask for and/or accept such gifts from anyone at all in exchange for their votes?

    All of these people work for me, for us, and everything they vote on is a legal matter, so why do we tolerate what we would quickly address if a gangster had done the same thing? And if there is no fault or illegality here, then shouldn’t I be allowed to offer my own vote for sale to the highest bidder? Or is it against the law if I the employer do as my employees are doing daily as a matter of practice? Chances are there is a law that prohibits me from selling or offering for sale my vote, or from soliciting votes from others in exchange for compensation. Does this law only apply to “we the people” and when did the politicians stop being one of the people?

    Please consider taking steps to press charges of corruption against any of these politicians who’ve been involved in going against the will of the American people in exchange for their votes. Some of these shameless crooks have spoken openly of giving their healthcare vote over to obama and pelosi in exchange for money, concessions or tax exemptions for their districts. Make no mistake, these hired hands have sold their vote just as surely as if I’d listed mine on ebay. And if charges could be filed against such politicians for tampering with the political process, I would think that a revote could then be demanded on this damnable bill. Additionally, if you need me – as their employer – to file the charges, in the spirit of our fore-fathers I will gladly step up to the plate for the sake of justice and fair-play.

    Sincerely, K. Mann

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