Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dems Spin Kennedy's Death, Dissent Grows Anyways

Shortly after the Death of the Lion of the Senate, Democrats were already using him as a reason to back the President's health care reform:

Securing universal healthcare coverage for Americans was a decades-long quest that eluded Sen. Edward Kennedy. In the wake of his death, however, several key Democrats on Wednesday saw a chance to break this year's stalemate by invoking his legacy and last wishes.

``In his honor and as a tribute to his commitment to his ideals, let us stop the shouting and name calling and have a civilized debate on healthcare reform, which I hope, when legislation has been signed into law, will bear his name for his commitment to [ensuring] the health of every American,'' Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., said in a statement.

Absolutely shameless.

However, this kind of political pandering over Kennedy's passing still cannot dissuade the growing dissent that seems to be splitting into a choir of specialized interests:

Anti-abortion groups are gearing up for a battle in the fall over health-care legislation, another headache for Democrats who already face concerns about the measure's cost and reach.

Most versions of the Democratic health plan would create subsidies for lower-income people to buy private health insurance. If that insurance includes coverage for abortion, as many existing private plans do, it effectively means federal taxpayers are subsidizing abortion, critics of the legislation argue.

This just goes to show (1) how complicated this issue is; health care is an issue that covers a broad spectrum of philosophies, and some one is bound to be pissed off; and (2) this shows just how poorly the administration, congress, and the media have educated people about the plan. If the administration would have involved the public earlier with an education campaign (not a propaganda one mind you), or had the media been responsible and forthcoming with information about the plan, then there might not be as much vitriol coming from as many diverse groups.

Of course, when you try to slam through 1,100 or more pages (who the hell knows anymore) of legalese as fast as possible, most people in congress or the media are not going to have read the WHOLE bill (of course, that's what their staffers are for, but staffers don't go on CNN nor are they responsible to constituents).

Sorry guys, packaging and selling the death of a legend is not going to save you from amount of rancor coming from Americans. Not to mention that unless his seat is filled precipitously, a filibuster is now in the cards.

Like Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) said recently:

Sen. Russ Feingold has touched off a mini controversy over his comments last week that lawmakers are unlikely to pass a health care bill before the end of the year, if at all.

“Nobody is going to bring a bill before Christmas, and maybe not even then, if this ever happens,” Feingold said during a listening session in Iron County. “The divisions are so deep. I’ve never seen anything like that.”


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