Does Reid bill mandate abortion coverage in exchanges?

posted at 9:44 am on November 21, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

So argues CNS News, which looks at the same section of the Harry Reid version of ObamaCare that will get its first procedural test today.  Section 1303 purports to forbid federal funds from subsidizing abortions or abortion coverage, but those restrictions are never explicitly spelled out in the text, unlike the Stupak amendment, as I wrote earlier this week.  But CNS’ Terence Jeffrey looks more closely at 1303 and notices a mandate in the language that gives the exact opposite of what Bart Stupak intended:

Senate Majority Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) late Wednesday published the final text of a Senate health care bill that would mandate federally subsidized abortion.

The mandate appears on page 120 of the 2,074-page bill under the seemingly innocuous heading: ‘Assured Availability of Varied Coverage Through Exchanges.”

Specifically, the provision requires that the secretary of Health and Human Services make certain that at least one health insurance plan offered in government-regulated insurance exchanges where people will be able to purchase health insurance using government subsidies must provide coverage of abortion. The secretary also must make certain that at least one plan available in the exchanges not cover abortions.

The relevant language says: “The Secretary shall assure that with respect to qualified health plans offered in any Exchange established pursuant to this title—(I) there is at least one such plan that provides coverage of services described in clauses (i) and (ii) of subparagraph (B); and (II) there is at least one such plan that does not provide coverage of services described in subparagraph (B)(i).”

The clause “(i)” of “subparagraph (B)” referred to in this passage defines those types of abortions currently banned from receiving federal funding under the Hyde Amendment. The Hyde Amendment bans federal funding for all abortions except those done in cases of rape, incest and a threat to the life of the mother. So, the language of Sen. Reid’s health care bill mandates that at least one health insurance plan available to people buying health insurance with federal subsidies cover those abortions that are currently prohibited from receiving federal funding under the Hyde Amendment.

At least ostensibly, this is an unfunded mandate on the states, which run the exchanges.  What happens when no insurer in the state offers abortion coverage?  At the moment, 87% of all abortions are purchased outside of third-party payers, so this is not an academic question.  Do the feds intend to shut down an exchange that doesn’t offer an abortion plan?  Or do they expect the states then to cover abortions instead?

But what this appears to be is a ready-made trigger for federal intervention.  In my earlier piece, I noted the weak restrictions in 1303, which relied on this odd construction:

(i) ABORTIONS FOR WHICH PUBLIC FUNDING IS PROHIBITED.—The services described in this clause are abortions for which the expenditure of Federal funds appropriated for the Department of Health and Human Services is not permitted, based on the law as in effect as of the date that is 6 months before the beginning of the plan year involved.

That relies on the Hyde Amendment, which many people think is a perpetual law, but actually has to get re-enacted each year.  Once the Hyde Amendment fails to pass, federal monies can then go to pay for abortions through the HHS — and now through ObamaCare as well.  Stupak’s language replaced the Hyde Amendment with explicit language:

(a) IN GENERAL.-No funds authorized or appropriated by this Act (or an amendment made by this Act) may be used to pay for any abortion or to Cover any part of the costs of any health plan that includes coverage of abortion, except in the case where a woman suffers·from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself, or unless the pregnancy is the result of an act of rape or incest.

Once Congress stops re-enabling the Hyde Amendment, the mandates in Reid’s Section 1303 will force the federal government  to supply the coverage for abortion where state exchanges have none.  It will give the federal government an entree into broader health-insurance offerings, and that will have one ironic effect: it will crowd out those few private insurance plans that offer elective abortion coverage.  Where Stupak’s opponents insisted that his language would create a “price signal” that would encourage private insurers to abandon abortion coverage, this would all but guarantee the same result, as private insurers would get undercut by the federal plan that would come into play.

This is nothing more  than a mandate for federally-funded abortions.  How long would it take a court to make that same determination?  I suspect that Planned Parenthood and NARAL already have their legal counsel preparing for it.


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Did anyone really believe federally-funded abortions would not be included?

IowaWoman on November 21, 2009 at 9:50 AM

The fact is that this bill is wholly UNCONSTITUTIONAL and even considering it for debate is traitorous!

Yet we are sidetracked by abortion, the cost, and PC manipulations. God help us.

csdeven on November 21, 2009 at 9:51 AM

where are the anti-abortion, religious right? they are active, loud & well-funded. why aren’t they raising hue & cry?

and even if you are pro-choice, as I am, I don’t want the govt to pay for abortions.

besides, black people overwhelmingly reject abortions. doesn’t the black caucus understand this? I guess not since 99% of blacks voted for Obama, the infanticide champion.

kelley in virginia on November 21, 2009 at 9:51 AM

WHAT FOOLS WOULD TRUST ANYTHING THEY SAY??? Serious people reject EVERYTHING they say until absolutely proved. They are criminals.

marklmail on November 21, 2009 at 9:51 AM

yes, this bill is unconstitional.

and watch the next move by Dem Congress. we have to raise your taxes ALOT to pay for the war in Afghanistan–because you stupid-ass Republicans want to protect our country from make-believe terrorists.

kelley in virginia on November 21, 2009 at 9:53 AM

What would it take for the RNC to…”buy” Landrieu’s vote? Or financially support the blue-dogs who are being threatened with stripped financial support by the Democrats?

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 9:55 AM

I apologized when my Congressman Dem Perriello voted for Pelosi’s bill (but state Senator Robert Hurt (Republican) will replace Perriello in 2010) & so now I will apologize to my nation about Dems Warner & WEbb. I think they are going to vote for it.

kelley in virginia on November 21, 2009 at 9:55 AM

Kelley, the pro-life cause is mostly made up of middle age women with little political experience. We rely on politicians who probably could not care less about abortion, but oppose it to win elections.

The pro-abortion lobby is made up of professional policy analysts and misguided women who go through college and law school just to protect the “right” to kill their child.

Also, we’re honest, and pro-abortionists lie through their teeth. It’s not a fair fight.

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 9:57 AM

Well, that does it, the bill is dead!
The highly principled Deomcrats and Catholics said they would not vote for abortion funding in any bill,

Hey wait a minute didn’t Pinnochio say he wouldn’t go for it either?

YeeeeeHaaa, the wicked unconstitutional HealthScare bill is DEAD!

Well, unless the Democrats, Catholics and Pinnochio are shameless liars with no principles what-so-ever when it comes to stealin workin folks money and killin babies!

Over/under on that?

dhunter on November 21, 2009 at 9:59 AM

The elections are just too far away.

tomas on November 21, 2009 at 10:00 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them? To be honest, I would think this was something people would just as soon not be included in their insurance history. If you make it cash, it is no one’s business but your own.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

Sic Semper Tyrannus!!

blaque jacques on November 21, 2009 at 10:03 AM

Somewhere the Keebler Cookie Tree is missing it’s elf

blatantblue on November 21, 2009 at 10:04 AM

It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is to-day, can guess what it will be to-morrow.”–Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 62, 1788

WisCon on November 21, 2009 at 10:07 AM

This bill may be unconstitutional but any bill that does not allow abortion to be paid for will have at least that portion found unconstitutional by our courts.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 10:07 AM

Somewhere the Keebler Cookie Tree is missing it’s elf

blatantblue on November 21, 2009 at 10:04 AM

That’s an insult to Keebler cookies.

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:07 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them?
Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

Because many people don’t even have that kind of money. They have money for booze and cigs.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 10:09 AM

I am pro life or anti abortion whichever label someone wants to put on it. I do not want the blood of unborn children on my hands paid by my tax money. These people are evil. This only shows how evil these people are and how controlling by forcing us to pay for this abomination.

God don’t like ugly.

Kissmygrits on November 21, 2009 at 10:10 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them?

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

I’m afraid you don’t understand what America has become.

First they say be non-judgmental of depravity, then they say depravity is a virtue, then they say other people have to pay for my depravity, finally they say that other people must not only pay for it, but must also state publicly that they acknowledge and consent to the fact that such depravity is a necessary and absolute good.

See what’s going on here?

jeff_from_mpls on November 21, 2009 at 10:10 AM

Somewhere the Keebler Cookie Tree is missing it’s elf

blatantblue on November 21, 2009 at 10:04 AM

Elves everywhere are insulted and outraged at that statement, Elves are people too.

thomasaur on November 21, 2009 at 10:12 AM

You know, I have to pass two abortion death chambers on my way home every day. Every day I see brand new cars pulling out of them. If you can afford a new Honda, you can freaking afford the 400 dollars it cost to kill your child.

Of course, if you can afford the Honda, you could afford to NOT kill your child as well, but it’s just so much easier to suck out their brains so you can keep going to parties.

/rant

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:13 AM

It doesn’t matter.

As csdeven said above, provisions like this one are just something for the armchair political junkies — and right-to-life activists — to rage about while Reid and the rest of the traitors in the Senate play their unconstitutional games and slip this whole ugly mess through the corrupted system.

It doesn’t matter whether the bill pays for abortions, cosmetic surgery, sex-changes or pet care. At the root of this all is the evil that is Washington DC under the reign of Osama Obama.

By tonight we’ll be another step down the road to bankruptcy and totalitarianism.

And the blind fools in Congress will cheer loudly. After all, none of this will affect their gold-plated health, pension and payoff plans.

We’ve been had. And the abortion provision is only one small nail in America’s coffin.

MrScribbler on November 21, 2009 at 10:13 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them?
Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

Because many people don’t even have that kind of money. They have money for booze and cigs.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 10:09 AM

I get that, but if they have to pay for the insurance or face jail, then obviously they will be paying for it anyway. If you see what I mean.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:13 AM

dhunter on November 21, 2009 at 9:59 AM

This is all a rouse. Democrats have been calling themselves Democrats for years to hide the fact that they are socialists. The members of the party know this, the Bishops know this, the press knows this.

The Socialist Agenda is socialism. We will have this shoved down our throat. It will start tonight and we will all be just like the cover of Newsweak said a year ago – All Socialist Now – by Christmas.

What are you prepared to do about it?

Sic Semper Tyrannus!

blaque jacques on November 21, 2009 at 10:14 AM

Do you think it will stop at abortion? Didn’t a county in Frisco (yes I know that upsets you…) authorize to pay for sex change operations?

bbordwell on November 21, 2009 at 10:17 AM

I agree that abortion has destracted from the full horror of the bill. The bishops folded despite all the anti-life, anti-freedom language.

I honestly don’t know what to do. I’ll be calling my senators today, but they’re both Republicans who aren’t going to vote for the bill anyway.

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:17 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them?
Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

“It’s their RIGHT to an abortion. We have to support their RIGHTS otherwise poor women who can’t afford abortions can’t have their RIGHTS”
“oh… okay, then shouldn’t we fund gun purchases for people since there’s a right written in the 2nd amendment of…”
“That’s a LIE! There’s no such RIGHT and even if it were it doesn’t excuse the fact that you support DEATH. Ha! It’s so ironic that you (holds up quoted fingers) “pro” “lifers” support such death dealing things as guns and execution.”
“Yeah but isn’t abortion murder?”
“NO. Ha, you stupid back water redneck repug. It’s just some cells and besides, it belongs to the MOTHER, it’s a parasite. Do you consider it MURDER to take cold medicine? Besides, this saves the planet from unwanted babies who would grow up hated and unloved and be an increased strain on Gaia’s resources… nope, my logic is irrefutable.”

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:18 AM

Skywise:

Gee, I am sorry I asked.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:20 AM

I agree that abortion has destracted from the full horror of the bill. The bishops folded despite all the anti-life, anti-freedom language.
Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:17 AM

It’s why I’ve given up on religion (not God, just religion) the high priests of several various religions seem to have given up their beliefs and ideology so they can be “popular and relevant”.

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:20 AM

Dr. Utopia says he might not run again in 2012.

Meanwhile Darleen at PW has the agenda for “health care” and it is a wee bit broader than signing up the uninsured:

•An income surtax on taxpayers earning more than $500,000 a year,[1]
•An excise tax on high-cost “Cadillac” health insurance plans that cost more than $8,500 a year for individuals or $21,000 for families,[2]
•An excise tax on medical devices such as wheelchairs, breast pumps, and syringes used by diabetics for insulin injections,[3]
•A cap on the exclusion of employer-provided health insurance without offsetting tax cuts,[4]
•A limit on itemized deductions for taxpayers with a top income tax rate greater than 28 percent,[5]
•A windfall profits tax on health insurance companies,[6]
•A value-added tax, which would tax the value added to a product at each stage of production,[7]
•An increase in the Medicare portion of the payroll tax to 3.4 percent for incomes great than $200,000 a year ($250,000 for married filers),[8]
•An excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages including non-diet soda and sports drinks,[9]
•Higher taxes on alcoholic beverages including beer, wine, and spirits,[10]
•A tax on individuals without acceptable health care coverage of up to 2.5 percent of their adjusted gross income,[11]
•A limit on contributions to health savings accounts,[12]
•An 8 percent tax on all wages paid by employers that do not provide their employees health insurance that satisfies the requirements defined by the Secretary of Health and Human Services,[13]
•A limit on contributions to flexible spending arrangements,[14]
•Elimination of the deduction for expenses associated with Medicare Part D subsidies,[15]
•An increase in taxes on international businesses,[16]
•Elimination of the tax credits paper companies take for biofuels they create in their production process–the so-called “Black Liquor credit,”[17]
•Fees on insured and self-insured health plans,[18]
•A limit or repeal of the itemized deduction for medical expenses,[19]
•A limit on the Qualified Medical Expense definition,[20]
•An increase in the payroll taxes on students,[21]
•An extension of the Medicare payroll tax to all state and local government employees,[22]
•An increase in taxes on hospitals,[23]
•An increase in the estate tax,[24]
•Increased efforts to close the mythical “tax gap,”[25]
•A 5 percent tax on cosmetic surgery and similar procedures such as Botox treatments, tummy tucks, and face lifts,[26]
•A tax on drug companies,[27]
•An increase in the corporate tax on providers of health insurance,[28] and
•A $500,000 deduction limitation for the compensation paid by health insurance companies to their officers, employees, and directors.[29]

Mr. Joe on November 21, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Skywise:

Gee, I am sorry I asked.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:20 AM

Sorry, I’m just really tired of the pop-intellectualism that every liberal subscribes to because they listen to pop-intellectuals because they don’t want to be perceived as stupid but all they do is mouth off what they read without actually THINKING about what their positions.

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:25 AM

But, Mr. Joe, Obama promised no tax increases for the middle class. Do you mean that he lied to me? Who would have thought that such a trustworthy man as he would be capable of saying anything to get elected…

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:26 AM

Dr. Utopia says he might not run again in 2012.

Mr. Joe on November 21, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Chavez said the same thing.

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:26 AM

Any info on Byrd?

Will he show?

artist on November 21, 2009 at 10:27 AM

This is a stupid issue.

Knowing our government as I do, the free abortions will have a nine and a half month long waiting list.

IlikedAUH2O on November 21, 2009 at 10:30 AM

I was just thinking about something… You know how the Baby killing… I’m sorry “Pro Choice” crowd loves to say “my body, my choice”? Why aren’t these same people shouting about mandatory insurance? You’d think that a group so concerned about “rights” would be outraged that people could face fines and jail for not getting insurance, no?

RightWinged on November 21, 2009 at 10:31 AM

Skywise:

I was just kidding. Give em hell.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:34 AM

Knowing our government as I do, the free abortions will have a nine and a half month long waiting list.

IlikedAUH2O on November 21, 2009 at 10:30 AM

No way, they’ll set up ‘Jiffy Lube’ type clinics in all urban neighborhoods.

thomasaur on November 21, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Rightwinged, it’s not like they actually believe in the whole “my body, my choice” crap. If they did, they couldn’t support late term abortions. Giving a child medical care doesn’t harm their bodily integrity, yet they fight against it tooth and nail because “my body, my choice.”

You also won’t see them lining up against mandatory vaccinations or protesting DUI blood draws. They’re concern over bodily rights begins and ends with killing thier kids.

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Any info on Byrd?

Will he show?

artist on November 21, 2009 at 10:27 AM

I wondered that, and last I heard Baucus is still with his mother, she is very sick I guess.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Any info on Byrd?

artist on November 21, 2009 at 10:27 AM

Weekend at Bernie’s comes to mind. /s/

yoda on November 21, 2009 at 10:36 AM

RightWinged on November 21, 2009 at 10:31 AM

Again – you don’t understand what they are up to. Everything anyone ever protested against is OK now that the Socialists are doing it – because they will further the Socialist agebda.

It has ALWAYS been about socialism. That is why the NOW was silent on the Rape Rooms in Iraq (And now Iran, Code Pink has suddenly supported the war(s), and AARP is all for rationing (Could you imagine what they would be saying if a “Panel of Experts” under Bush made the Mamgram and Pap Smear “recommendations”).

The Socialists are (Have) taken over. Don’t expect them to do anything except enact their agenda. Like Bab’s Boxer says – they “Worked hard for it”.

Sic Semper Tyrannus!!

blaque jacques on November 21, 2009 at 10:38 AM

kelley in virginia on November 21, 2009 at 9:55 AM

I emailed Warner & Webb, not that it will do any good. I basically said if they didn’t get the message with the governors race maybe they would next November. Although, I am a Texan-American by birth & spent most of my life there, I have come to love living in the state of Virginia. I am ready for our new governor to take the lead and Cowboy Up to Washington.

truetexan on November 21, 2009 at 10:40 AM

I was just thinking about something… You know how the Baby killing… I’m sorry “Pro Choice” crowd loves to say “my body, my choice”? Why aren’t these same people shouting about mandatory insurance? You’d think that a group so concerned about “rights” would be outraged that people could face fines and jail for not getting insurance, no?

RightWinged on November 21, 2009 at 10:31 AM

Great point, but liberals never have to make sense or be consistent. No one challenges them in the lamestream media.

Christian Conservative on November 21, 2009 at 10:43 AM

So women can have abortions at will, but not mammograms and pap smears?

My my, what useful idiots progressive feminists are.

Rae on November 21, 2009 at 10:47 AM

This bill is intended as an abortion on the American dream. Of course it will include abortions.

darktood on November 21, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Knowing our government as I do, the free abortions will have a nine and a half month long waiting list.

IlikedAUH2O on November 21, 2009 at 10:30 AM

Nah this is the sacrament of the liberal religion…to the front of the line. Screw the rest of you.

/

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 10:50 AM

Great point, but liberals never have to make sense or be consistent. No one challenges them in the lamestream media.

Christian Conservative on November 21, 2009 at 10:43 AM

They don’t care about rights. They’ve NEVER cared about rights. They support abortion not because of “individuality” but because of the need to dodge responsibility and work.

Same with health care. Getting it requires responsibility and work.

When a liberal says “rights” they really mean “things you should give me”. Real rights (where the government cannot interfere in your life) don’t exist because liberals don’t understand negative concepts. (C’mon, how can you DO something if the government can’t do it?)

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:51 AM

besides, black people overwhelmingly reject abortions murder babies. doesn’t the black caucus understand this? I guess not since 99% of blacks voted for Obama, the infanticide champion.

kelley in virginia on November 21, 2009 at 9:51 AM

Who’s having abortions (race)?
While white women obtain 60% of all abortions, their abortion rate is well below that of minority women. Black women are more than 3 times as likely as white women to have an abortion, and Hispanic women are roughly 2 times as likely.

uknowmorethanme on November 21, 2009 at 10:52 AM

Why can’t people who want abortions just pay for them?
Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:01 AM

Because many people don’t even have that kind of money. They have money for booze and cigs.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 10:09 AM

Perhaps free abortions should be made available with the requirement that the recipient also get their tubes tied.

Dark-Star on November 21, 2009 at 10:54 AM

Who’s having abortions (race)?
While white women obtain 60% of all abortions, their abortion rate is well below that of minority women. Black women are more than 3 times as likely as white women to have an abortion, and Hispanic women are roughly 2 times as likely.

uknowmorethanme on November 21, 2009 at 10:52 AM

]cough[ legacy of progressives and eugenics ]cough[

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 10:54 AM

This is essentially the Dems way of getting FOCA by stealth. They know that FOCA is a lost cause, but with obamacare, they can get everything they want.

Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:55 AM

So women can have abortions at will, but not mammograms and pap smears?

My my, what useful idiots progressive feminists are.

Rae on November 21, 2009 at 10:47 AM

In all fairness, no one is saying women can not get pap smears or mammograms. They are just saying they don’t have to get them every year. Personally, I think that women were scared into getting too many tests in the first place..by the same type of government panels who are now telling them they don’t have to get so many.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Aren’t women paying for abortions themselves now? Most of them anyway, unless they are medically necessary to save a life or something???

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:58 AM

Perhaps free abortions should be made available with the requirement that the recipient also get their tubes tied.

Dark-Star on November 21, 2009 at 10:54 AM

I imagine many libs would by into that. They seem to love China and its totalitarian control of reproductive rights.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Terrye- per the NAF–

Q. Does insurance cover the cost of an abortion?
A. Almost two-thirds of insurance companies cover elective abortion to some degree. Contact your insurance company to find out if you are covered.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 11:02 AM

I imagine many libs would by into that. They seem to love China and its totalitarian control of reproductive rights.

CWforFreedom on November 21, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Unfortunately, so do an alarming number of my CF friends. :(

Dark-Star on November 21, 2009 at 11:10 AM

I was chatting with my 80-yr old MIL the other day. She is a devout catholic, and said she believes God will protect America against the destruction by the democrats. I told her that I believe God no longer blesses America because of precisely this topic – abortion. We can no longer be considered good people when we murder 50 million babies in the name of choice. And we do not deserve His favor.

Sam Adams on November 21, 2009 at 11:11 AM

Mr. Joe on November 21, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Among many things:

a VAT?

An excise tax on high-cost “Cadillac” health insurance plans that cost more than $8,500 a year for individuals or $21,000 for families,[2]

A cap on the exclusion of employer-provided health insurance without offsetting tax cuts,[4]

These latter two are a head-I-win-tails-you-lose proposition.

An increase in the estate tax,[24]

The federal estate tax disappears in 2010 for a year (seniors, watch your backs) and is supposed to return to the rate brackets before the Bush tax cuts. Are Dems calling for the top FET rate to exceed 55%?

BuckeyeSam on November 21, 2009 at 11:12 AM

In all fairness, no one is saying women can not get pap smears or mammograms. They are just saying they don’t have to get them every year. Personally, I think that women were scared into getting too many tests in the first place..by the same type of government panels who are now telling them they don’t have to get so many.

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:57 AM

I tend to agree they were scared into getting too many tests, but I believe the science/statistics behind them was sound. It’s like the popcorn warning that came out yesterday. Yeah, it was a statement to scare people straight but it was scientifically BAD (but so’s a Hardee’s burger).

These more recent statements from the government are REALLY scary. Because they’re not for the good of the people. They’re for the good of the government. Which is NOT what the government of the United States is about. It doesn’t exist to protect or sustain itself.

Which is why this health care bill is BAD.

Skywise on November 21, 2009 at 11:15 AM

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Breast Cancer Screening and “Soft” Death Panels

DrRich must therefore remind his readers that bias is inevitable in clinical research, and those who control the process get to control the bias – and therefore control what turns out to be medically right and wrong. Further, clinical research of any kind only tells you about the average response within a large group of patients, and cannot tell you how specific individuals will respond, or which specific individuals are likely to respond differently from the average, or which individuals would – if given the opportunity – weigh the risks and benefits differently than a panel of experts thinks they should. In other words, what we are getting with such a system is group medicine, and not individualized medicine.

So, the hallmark of soft death panels will be to take clinical evidence collected in groups of patients – interpreted with an overwhelming bias toward reducing costs – and to institutionalize and enforce the application of that evidence to individual patients. Soft death panels will be in the business of interpreting clinical evidence in the service of covert rationing, and the results will be packaged and sold as science – pure, sweet, clear, and unassailable science.

Sebelius Is Wrong – The USPSTF Is Setting Policy

The USPSTF, to be renamed the TFCPS, will review the clinical science AND THE COSTS of preventive medical services and give them a grade based on those findings. The grade will determine whether a preventive service is covered or not. Services that receive a grade of A or B will be covered, otherwise, not. Most strikingly, the current activities of the USPSTF – including its new recommendations on breast cancer screening and coronary artery screening – will become official healthcare policy, and will directly determine coverage, as soon as the new healthcare reform plan is passed.

In fact, even before we actually have healthcare reform, the plan has been implemented. This week, we are seeing it in action. The “recommendations” of the USPSTF on breast cancer screening – protestations of Ms. Sebelius to the contrary notwithstanding – are indeed intended to be dispositive.
[...]
For practical purposes, perhaps it matters little whether we are being led by the ignorant, by liars, or by people who are cleverly deceptive. Whichever is true, we are in a bad state, and the results of such leadership will affect us profoundly in many ways.

But whatever the balance between ignorance and deceptiveness among our leaders, it should be clear to all that the war on preventive medicine – long predicted by your sad correspondent, DrRich, as a necessary component of covert rationing – has officially begun.

Rae on November 21, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Any info on Byrd?

Will he show?

artist on November 21, 2009 at 10:27 AM

Yeah, after he gets his robe and hood dry-cleaned and pressed.

SagebrushPuppet on November 21, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Did anyone really believe federally-funded abortions would not be included?

IowaWoman on November 21, 2009 at 9:50 AM

Anyone who’s been paying attention knew that this bill would include taxpayer-funded abortions, as well as taxpayer-funded healthcare for illegal aliens. The Democrats’ promises to the contrary were always blatant lies — as Joe Wilson so memorably pointed out.

AZCoyote on November 21, 2009 at 11:19 AM

I agree that abortion has destracted from the full horror of the bill.

Yes and no. The problem is that the Dems don’t blink at the non-abortion-related arguments against the bill. They are Dems, after all. These are the same people who already voted for the stimulus and cap and trade (in the House). They have the votes and they simply DO NOT CARE about fiscal arguments, or mandates, or public opposition, or coverage of illegals, or anything else.

Abortion is so far the ONLY thing that has made them even remotely skittish about passing this horrific bill.

So we can whine all we want about how abortion is a distraction, but the numbers have been against us all along. We’re lucky to have anything AT ALL that is causing them to hesitate.

Missy on November 21, 2009 at 11:57 AM

Byrd can’t even know what the hell he’s votin for!
How can any state keep puttin in such a senile old fool?
Arizona?
The electorate has become a bunch of idiots and as badly as it hurts to say it we must be getting just what we deserve for playin the bring me the goodies game.
Sign Me:
Never so ashamed of my country!
Goin Rogue with Sarah, our only chance to throw the bums out and destroy their toys!

dhunter on November 21, 2009 at 12:02 PM

Rae:

I don’t care about the links. I am talking about something else entirely. The very fact that women get these tests every year came from the recommendations of some government panel. Now some other government panel is saying that maybe some women, especially younger women are getting too many tests. They probably are.

The point is that every single in the US could get a breast exam every other month, and only so many of them would ever benefit, because only so many of them would ever develop breast cancer. So, for the women who do not get the disease serves no purpose. And more of the women who get the disease are older women, so they tend to find an abnormality more often than the younger women and so the tests are more beneficial for them.

The same is true with pap smears.

In fact, I think a lot of women have been over charged for years, getting tests they more often than not do not need, just so someone else can make money.

Now, if you want for your own peace of mind to get these tests, then you can, if you want to pay for them. And the truth is a lot of these tests should be paid out of pocket anyway. How much would a yearly pap and mammogram cost someone?

Terrye on November 21, 2009 at 12:20 PM

Mary Landreiu is a traitor to my state and my Nation! May she go down in infamy, reviled as much as Benedict Arnold. She has sold us out for a bribe for N O. Time for statewide recall. I am ashamed she is from my state.

LSUMama on November 21, 2009 at 1:03 PM

Goin Rogue with Sarah, our only chance to throw the bums out and destroy their toys!

dhunter on November 21, 2009 at 12:02 PM

AMEN!!!

LSUMama on November 21, 2009 at 1:04 PM

1 The taxpayers are paying for a KSM defense attorney whose sole purpose is to set the mastermind of 3000 mass murders free to flip a finger at his victims.

2 If this Health Care catastrophe passes, to further rub salt into taxpayers’ wounds it will fund abortions. And, even more salt, if you refuse to pay for for health care which funds abortions, you are subject to fines and imprisonment.

What happened to the Party of Thomas Jefferson? It has become the Party of William Jefferson.

MaiDee on November 21, 2009 at 1:56 PM

The bishops folded despite all the anti-life, anti-freedom language.
Vera on November 21, 2009 at 10:17 AM

That’s NOT true. The Bishops didn’t fold on Abortion!!!

………

White House at odds with bishops over abortion

Nov 20, 8:30 AM (ET)

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR

WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House is on a collision course with Catholic bishops in an intractable dispute over abortion that could blow up the fragile political coalition behind President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.

A top Obama administration official on Thursday praised the new Senate health care bill’s attempt to find a compromise on abortion coverage – even as an official of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said Sen. Harry Reid’s bill is the worst he’s seen so far on the divisive issue.

The bishops were instrumental in getting tough anti-abortion language adopted by the House, forcing Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to accept restrictions that outraged liberals as the price for passing the Democratic health care bill. Reid, D-Nev., now faces a similar choice: Ultimately, he will need the votes of Democratic senators who oppose abortion to get his bill through the Senate.
http://apnews.myway.com/article/20091120/D9C39JS81.html

Annie on November 21, 2009 at 4:43 PM

The last post is from the AP/Always Pimping medium. I’m not supposed to quote their “sacred” words w/o a fee. They call it a “Fair Use” fee. I hereby declare that it’s not this forums fault I used this AP article.

Interestingly, the staff from Always Pimping/AP stole a copy of Sarah Palin’s book, ripped the pages from it’s cover, scanned it to make 11 books, so 11 Pimps could tear it apart 5 days prior to being published. They make up their own rules as they go along. “Fair Use”? HA!

Annie on November 21, 2009 at 6:40 PM