Thursday, October 25, 2007

SCHIP - The Next Round

Bumped to the top of the page, since it's kind of important... - Fitzy

The Hill
brings us the latest on efforts to pass an SCHIP reauthorization:

After tinkering with their bill, House Democrats believe they have made the necessary concessions to attract a veto-proof majority on legislation expanding the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).

House Democratic leadership aides said that the new bill has addressed the three principle Republican complaints made about the original five-year, $35 billion expansion, which President Bush vetoed earlier this month.

A vote on the legislation is scheduled for Thursday. If it is approved with a veto-proof majority, it would qualify as a huge political victory for Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as well as Senate Democrats, who already have the votes to override Bush.
The revised measure will include provisions prohibiting coverage of adults, preventing families with incomes of 300 percent of the poverty level from qualifying for the program, and making it harder for illegal immigrants to sign up for the program.
and finally,
Liberal activists are carrying out ad campaigns in the districts of seven House Republicans calling out the lawmakers for their votes against the SCHIP bills.

The ad campaign is funded by the Political Action and is being supported by a broader grassroots outreach efforts being carried out by the Political Action, big labor unions, Americans United for Change, USAction, the Campaign for America’s Future, ACORN and several other liberal groups.

Although the targeted members, GOP Reps. Tom Feeney (Fla.), Ric Keller (Fla.), Sam Graves (Mo.), Randy Kuhl (N.Y.), Marilyn Musgrave (Colo.) and Tim Walberg (Mich.), arguably aren’t the most likely lawmakers to flip their votes,’s message won’t be lost on other House Republicans facing difficult reelection bids.

In addition to organizations such as these and Families USA, which are traditional allies of the Democratic Party, influential lobbying groups with ties to both parties also say they’ll keep up their efforts to get an SCHIP bill passed.

“Everything we’ve been doing, we’ve continued doing,” a spokesman for the AARP said. Those activities have included dispatching their formidable lobbying team to shore up support on Capitol Hill for the SCHIP bill, print and TV ad campaigns and grassroots activity.
Obviously, having not seen or read the compromise bill (actually, the second compromise... the original version was bigger than the one eventually passed and vetoed), I can't say whether or not it is good or bad. However, I can say that if it addresses the issues of adults on SCHIP, higher-income families, and illegal immigrants, Congressman Walberg really has no legitimate reason to vote against it. Those were his complaints, and the Democratic leadership says they've addressed them.

Please keep in mind, however, that in the bill Walberg voted against, all of his objections were already addressed. This would just be tougher language.

So, House Democrats have made moves to compromise. Will Congressman Walberg?

We'll find out tomorrow.

UPDATE: Er... we'll find out today. I hadn't realized it was after midnight!

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Being that Walberg is not a constitutionalist, but instead, a neocon in the Bush/Clinton mold, I predict he will vote for this assault on the Constitution, which will result in even greater healthcare costs and worse care for everyone, including children.
The Republicans are better off passing a SCHIP program now before they lose control of congress and the White House. A new internet show called 'The Raymond Report' focused on one family's need for SCHIP and the host has an interesting take on new, intrusive trends taking place now because of the new HIPPA laws that most people don't even know about. Some states already let companies fire employees for smoking or not hire smokers. Now, employers can raise insurance rates on employees who don't want to participatein new corporate 'Wellness Programs' . So while the SCHIP program is a necessity, what happends to people who have access to medical insurance but may get priced out because of smoking or even diets and personal habits. Check out

The host is set up as a watchdog and has a team of investigators for people with healthcare problems
With the new provisions in this version of the S-CHIP bill, Walberg is going to have to invent new reasons he won't vote for it.

Walberg is not a constitutionalist. He'd like the US to be governed by a theocracy--christian, of course.
anonymous #4 - Hey, you're preaching to the choir. I know that. I said, "Being that he is NOT a constitutionalist." I often refer to him as Mullah Walberg.
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