Archives for Capitol Hillbillies

Racism, bigotry in health care protest

Racism and anti-gay bigotry reared their ugly heads Saturday as Tea Party participants protested the health care vote that is scheduled for a historic vote Sunday. Protesters taunted openly-day Democratic Congressman Barney Frank with “faggot,” “homo” and other homophobic slurs and called African-American Georgia Congressman John Lewis a “nigger” as he left the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill. “They were shouting, sort of harassing,” Lewis told reporter William Douglas of McClatchy Newspapers. “But it’s OK. I’ve faced this before. It reminded me of the 60s. It was a lot of downright hate and anger and people being downright
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Dems: We have the votes

The chairman of the Democratic caucus in the House says his party has the 216 votes needed to pass President Barack Obama‘s historic health care bill. Speaking Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” Connecticut Rep. John Larson said, in his words, “We have the votes now — as we speak.” House Democrats are predicting that a rare Sunday session will produce one of the most significant legislative triumphs in decades: passage of a bill to overhaul the nation’s health care system to provide coverage to millions of people. Republicans resolutely oppose the bill. Related articles by Zemanta Sunday Morning Bobblehead Thread
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Dems close in magic number for health care bill

Slowly but steadily, support is building behind President Barack Obama‘s health care legislation in the House, the result of intense lobbying and politically targeted changes aimed at reassuring waverers and winning over critics. Obama himself was to talk up the sweeping overhaul in a midday speech Friday in Virginia, his fourth outside-the-Beltway event in two weeks as he scrambles to rally the public ahead of a climactic vote this weekend. On Capitol Hill, congressional leaders were focusing on those rank-and-file Democrats, including moderates and opponents of abortion, who remained undecided after the release Thursday of a final package of changes
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First jobs bill clears Congress

A package of tax breaks and highway spending cleared Congress on Wednesday, the first of what Democrats hope will be several efforts to bring down the 9.7 percent unemployment rate. The Senate passed the $17.6 billion measure by a vote of 68 to 29 and sent it to President Barack Obama, who will sign it into law on Thursday. “It is the first of what I hope will be a series of job packages that will help to continue to put people back to work all across America,” Obama said. With congressional elections looming in November, Democrats hope to show
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Health care vote delayed until Sunday

Pushing toward a history-making vote, Democrats struggled to eliminate lingering complications standing in the way of House action this weekend on President Barack Obama‘s landmark health care overhaul. Their drive to change the way health care is administered and extend coverage to millions of uninsured Americans took on a growing sense of inevitability, picking up endorsements from a longtime liberal holdout and from a retired Roman Catholic bishop and nuns who broke with church leaders over the bill’s abortion provisions. At the same time, last-minute snags related to costs delayed formal release of the legislation and an analysis from the
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Democrats defend hardball tactics

Under heavy Republican attack, Democrats in the House of Representatives on Tuesday defended plans to pass a healthcare overhaul without a direct vote as President Barack Obama‘s top domestic priority neared a make-or-break showdown. Obama and House Democratic leaders lobbied undecided Democrats for support ahead of a possible weekend vote on the overhaul, which would constitute the biggest change in the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system in four decades. Democrats are considering using a complicated process to avoid a direct vote on the Senate-passed bill, which is unpopular with House Democrats. Instead, they would declare the Senate bill passed once
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Passing health care without a vote?

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi admitted Monday she is considering some political slight-of-hand to push the controversial and flawed health care bill through the House without a vote. Instead of holding a vote on the full bill, Pelosi could hold a vote on a package of “fixes” that have support and them impose a little -known “self-executing rule” to “deem and pass” the full bill without a vote by members of the House. The “deem and pass” rule is normally used as a procedural move to approve routine legislation but not for big budget controversial bills. “It’s more process-oriented
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Final full-court press on health care

Days away from a make-or-break vote on his health care overhaul, President Barack Obama is turning up the pressure as only presidents can, as Democratic leaders make a desperate scramble for votes. The president is wooing freshman Democrats in the Oval Office, holding at least two one-on-one sessions in the past few days that never appeared on his official schedule, according to aides to two lawmakers invited, Reps. Scott Murphy, D-N.Y., and Suzanne Kosmas, D-Fla. Both voted “no” when the legislation passed the House on the first go-round last year, but now they’re not ruling out siding with the president
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Democrats lack the votes to pass health care reform

The House’s chief Democratic headcounter said Sunday he hadn’t rounded up enough votes to pass President Barack Obama‘s health care overhaul heading into a make-or-break week, even as the White House’s top political adviser said he was “absolutely confident” in its prospects. The administration gave signs of retreating on its demands that senators jettison special home-state deals sought by individual lawmakers that have angered the public. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs predicted House passage this week, before Obama travels to Asia, a trip he postponed to push for the bill. “This is the week where we will have this important
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Catholic hospitals support health bill

A group representing Catholic hospitals Saturday rallied behind President Barack Obama’s health care bill ahead of a House vote in which anti-abortion lawmakers could play a decisive role. The chief executive of the Catholic Health Association, Carol Keehan, wrote on the group’s Web site that although the legislation isn’t perfect, it represents a “major first step” toward covering all Americans and would make “great improvements” for millions of people. The more than 600 Catholic hospitals across the country do not provide abortions as a matter of conscience. The association’s support widens a split among abortion foes on whether the bill
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