November 23, 2009
Healthcare: Thank or Spank your Senators
By Jim Babka

The Senate voted to consider Harry Reid's healthcare bill on Saturday night.

We must say, first of all, that there's no need to panic. Keep in mind . . .

* The Senate did NOT pass the bill, it only agreed to end a filibuster that prevented the bill from being considered.
* There will be a debate and a consideration of amendments to the bill after Thanksgiving
* There will be another filibuster to prevent final passage of the bill, and breaking a filibuster requires 60 votes, which means . . .
* Final passage of the bill still requires 60 votes

That said, we are angry that this bill is moving forward. We must respond to this vote as we responded to the passage in the House of Pelosi's healthcare bill two weeks ago . . .

* Thank the 39 Senators who voted against consideration of Reid's healthcare bill
* Spank the 60 Senators who voted for it
* Copy your Representatives on these messages so they'll be reminded of where you stand

Do this . . .

* See how your Senator voted:
* Use our Educate the Powerful System to send your "thank or spank" letter to Congress

We believe it is especially important for citizens to "spank" Senators who expressed opposition to the bill because of the public option, yet voted to consider it anyway. These include most prominently:

* Bill Nelson (NE)
* Blanche Lincoln(AR)
* Mary Landrieu (LA)
* Joe Lieberman (CT)

If your two Senators voted in opposite directions, you can say something like this: "I thank Senator X for voting against cloture on Senator Reid's terrible healthcare bill, and I am very disappointed that Senator Y voted to move forward with it."

Because there are lots of combinations of Senators, where one voted for, another against, or both voted the same, we can't offer a one-size-fits-all letter today. So, here's a generic letter with talking points you may want to use in your own letter . . .

The American people do not support the liberty-crushing, debt-exploding, socializing healthcare bills Congress is considering. I therefore thank those Senators who voted against consideration of Sen. Reid's healthcare vote on Saturday night.

To those who voted to consider Sen. Reid's bill, let me suggest:

* although you willfully refuse to recognize that government interference has been the cause of exploding healthcare costs;
* although you refuse to even consider the possibility that LESS government is the solution to the healthcare crisis;
* although you don't recognize the fundamental wrongness of forcing individuals to purchase government-controlled health insurance they don't want;
* perhaps the intense opposition of the American people, and your own political self-interest, will finally persuade you to abandon your support for this bill.

I am especially angry with Senators who expressed opposition to the bill, yet still voted to break this filibuster. They spouted nonsense like "moving the debate forward" and "an opportunity to make improvements."

They had the power to stop what they said was an unacceptable bill, but they didn't.

Frankly, I suspect they are feigning "opposition" to the bill as leverage. I suspect they will be bribed to win their support of the final bill.

It happened already to win Sen. Landrieu's support. A promise of an additional $100 million to her state caused her to break the filibuster.

The American people will be watching carefully to see how many similar deals are brokered to win passage of this "healthcare reform."

It's in your interest, and your party's interest, to oppose Sen. Reid's boondoggle bill. We demand that you do.


Tell the Senate to oppose Reid's bill at every turn, and to prevent its progress.

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.


Filed under Downsizer Dispatch, Health
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