Obamacare

About that August Healthcare Reform Deadline…

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has conceded that the Senate won't be able to meet President Obama's August 7 deadline for a healthcare reform bill:

President Barack Obama's drive for healthcare reform suffered a setback on Thursday when Senate leaders said they would not be able to pass the measure before leaving for a monthlong August recess.

The day after Obama's prime-time news conference to sell the healthcare proposal, congressional leaders struggled to ease doubts about the plan and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the full chamber would not take up the bill until after its monthlong recess that begins on August 7.

"We'll come back in the fall" to work on the bill in the full Senate, he told reporters. 

Given the way Obama has framed the healthcare debate—as one of almost apocalyptic urgency—Reid might as well admit that he's comfortable being chauffeured to work over the dead bodies of uninsured children strewn about in the streets. It'll be interesting to see how Obama responds to the news that this can't-wait-another-month reform will…have to wait another month.

Check out Reason's healthcare archive here.

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  1. Unfortunately, Senator Reid misspoke today. He meant to say “We’ll come back after The Fall.”

  2. Harry Reid wants to destroy the President’s legacy!

    The bastard.

  3. Crap. Doesn’t this mean the end of the world. Or something like that?

  4. Crap. Doesn’t this mean the end of the world. Or something like that?

    I think it means we’ll have an economic crisis worse than the Great Depression, and unemployment will rise to 8.5%. Or am I mixing up my crises? They’re so hard to keep track of nowadays.

  5. Fuck. Time to go live in the bomb shelter.

  6. Reid might as well admit that he’s comfortable being chauffeured to work over the dead bodies of uninsured children strewn about in the streets.

    That’s not true. Reid is VERY comfortable being chauffeured over the bodies of dead children.

  7. We can get Mexicans to drag the dead uninsured children to the curb for four bucks an hour.

  8. We can get Mexicans to drag the dead uninsured children to the curb for four bucks an hour.

    No we can’t. They won’t come here because our economy is in the shitter and they won’t get free healthcare w/o this bill.

  9. Reid might as well admit that he’s comfortable being chauffeured to work over the dead bodies of uninsured children strewn about in the streets.

    Don’t be ridiculous. The suspension isn’t made that doesn’t get a little jouncy rolling over dead children, so he’ll probably spill his latte. Then he’ll be sorry.

  10. hmm : perhaps you haven’t taken a look at the Mexican economy lately… seen that peso exchange rate lately?

  11. The suspension isn’t made that doesn’t get a little jouncy rolling over dead children

    Pshaw – get in a fifty-ton chassis with tracks and a Horstmann suspension, and I bet you wouldn’t notice live children.

  12. hmm : perhaps you haven’t taken a look at the Mexican economy lately… seen that peso exchange rate lately?

    Our turd is falling as fast or faster so it all evens out.

  13. What about quality of legislative life? It’s heartbreaking to this poor, drooling, brain dead bill lying there like a vegetable, kept “alive” by committee respirators and media IVs.

    For the love of God, somebody pull the plug. I’ll fetch the pillow.

  14. Uh Oh. Obama’s going to do more of his channeling of Sammuel L. Jackson:

    Enough is enough! I have had it with these motherfucking tonsils on this motherfucking plane!

    Zeus: And who do we not want to help us?
    Dexter, Raymond: White people.
    Zeus: That’s right. Now get on outta here. Go to school.

    Healthcare, motherfucker, do you speak it?

  15. Obama has cried wolf one to many times. Even the other Democrats in DC are getting tired of it.

  16. Check out Reason’s healthcare archive (aka hysterical right-wing blather) here.

  17. # jtuf | July 23, 2009, 6:53pm | #
    # Obama has cried wolf one to many times.
    # Even the other Democrats in DC are getting
    # tired of it.

    And it’s still the middle of the first quarter, with three quarters left to go! This does not bode well for America’s Quarterback!

  18. Or perhaps a b-ball allusion would be more fitting. I just find the image of QB Barack running the wrong way in a 1930s-era collegiate football uniform, amusing for some reason.

  19. Bill Flanigen asked how Obama will respond. I heard the response on the radio on the way home. In his “Town Meeting” in Shaker Heights, Obama announced, to enthusiastic applause, that he wants a bill on his desk “by the end of the year!”

    More magical thinking – we just pretend the August deadline never existed.

  20. The spin in the mainstream media is that BO is OK with the delay because it affords time to “get it right.”

    Of course, “getting it right” would mean abandoning the dominance and centrality of “health insurance” or any insurance-like scheme (e.g., single-payer “public option”), and returning to a situation such as we enjoyed prior to WWII: People were able to afford routine doctor visits, drugs, and procedures — even short hospital stays — out-of-pocket or from modest savings. Health “insurance” tended to be for catastrophic coverage and was purchased by only a relative few. Access to health care did not depend on being employed, insured, or even, in very many cases, on ability to pay, as there were a fair number of charity hospitals, or charitable organizations that would defray costs for the indigent.

    No, it wasn’t a perfect world back then, but the health care system worked pretty well by any standard, and MUCH better than the monstrosity that we developed after WWII, which is proving to be ultimately dysfunctional. The shock of war jolted us off the main road and we never found our way back. We need to do so now. How long must we wait to TRULY “get it right”?

  21. Reid might as well admit that he’s comfortable being chauffeured to work over the dead bodies of uninsured children strewn about in the streets.

    What sticks out to me in this comment is that the dead children are uninsured. I realize it’s supposed to be like they’re dead because they WERE uninsured, but at the same time, I wouldn’t put it past Congress to try to retroactively insure dead people to fudge their numbers on how many people their public option insures.

    “Oh yeah, all those people who died without insurance in the past fifty years? … We’re insuring them now: BY DECLARATION OF CONGRESS.”

  22. …returning to a situation such as we enjoyed prior to WWII: People were able to afford routine doctor visits, drugs, and procedures — even short hospital stays — out-of-pocket or from modest savings. Health “insurance” tended to be for catastrophic coverage and was purchased by only a relative few.

    Correct. How much would an oil change for my car cost me if it was covered by insurance, with a couple of government-run programs piggybacking on top of it? This (paying out of pocket for minor things) would necessarily push health care costs much lower. Also, prior to the last 30-40 years, it was called hospitalization insurance because it covered only the more catastrophic occurrences, which usually required a hospital stay. The major, but usually overlooked, source of health care cost is the sheer number of things covered.

  23. From my perspective as a hospital lawyer, we’re not going to drive inefficiency out of the system without:

    (1) Getting back to catastrophic insurance by repealing insurance mandates. This will also make insurance much more affordable.

    (2) Tort reform to drive defensive medicine (clinically unnecessary tests) out of the system, as well as reduce cost of malpractice insurance.

    (3) Returning control over what patients are seen and what care is provided to actual health care providers by getting rid of insurance mandates and reforming “patient abandonment” laws to allow providers to “fire” patients.

  24. Oops. (3) should say “emergency room mandates” rather than “insurance mandates.”

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