The Czar was curious to see how the Times would spin this.
Basically, the President has delayed his overseas trip for the same reason he delayed it previously. No, Speaker Pelosi, not because he wants to stay at the helm while this brilliant piece of legislation is passed.
He is delaying his trip for the second time because they do not have the votes. So far, only President Obama has proven capable of changing a maybe-no vote to an okay-yes vote. The Czar’s okhrana tells him that every time Speaker Pelosi talks to an undecided representative, the rep decides to vote No. Basically, the leftists have now asked her stop talking to people because they have actually lost support since the last go-round.
So the President is staying behind to use his alleged god-like influence to enchant fence sitters to vote in favor of the healthcare vote. Popular rumor has it that President Obama is actually bribing reps, basically saying “If you vote yes, I will guarantee you a job in my administration for when you get voted out.” The President denies this, and Czar believes him. There is no way that the President would do anything so stupid when he has David Axelrod and Rahm Emmanuel to do it for him.
The President, however, probably is expressing to undecideds that this bill is his legacy, and if it fails, Hope and Change will fail, the balance in the Force will collapse, and Dick Cheney will kill all the Jedi younglings. And unless they all want to live on Dagobah citing five-year-old sci fi films, they better vote yes.
And while he probably is saying something like this—although maybe without as many of the Star Wars references (although the Darth Cheney bit would not surprise us)—the fact is that this bill is not President Obama’s legacy.
Not Actually ObamaCare
The growing realization for the Czar is that this bill has never been the President’s bill at all. He is merely the Good Cop, telling the American people what they might like to hear. In fact, the original bill was never written by the President, but was cobbled together from previous Progressive and Leftist Liberal proposals and ideas. The revised bill was developed by special interest groups like the SEIU—who stand to profit from its passage— and the Center for American Progress—who seek to gain power and influence over government—and a small group of insurance companies who will see their profit margins go from under a measly 4.1% based on the idea that the government will now absorb the brunt of the healthcare costs, and reduce the initial overhead on the insurance companies and therefore make them more profitable.
Oh, did you know that healthcare companies are helping to back the bill by offering donations to Democrats? Think that through: if things stay the same, healthcare costs will rise. Who gets hit first with rising costs? Insurance companies! They will pass that on to consumers, who might shop somewhere else and stick the insurance companies with that bill. Pass the healthcare bill, and that bill now goes to the taxpayers. To be fair, if the Republican proposal would pass, then healthcare costs would lower and the insurance companies would do better as well. Doing nothing hurts the insurance companies most (initially), which explains their endorsement of the current bill. Despite portrayals to the contrary, insurance companies are neither hiding behind the Evil Republicans, nor are they enormously wealthy corporations lighting cigars with $100 bills.
Back to the President. So he did not write the bill. He may not even be terribly aware of what it contains at this point. He does not even vote on it. If the bill passes, he takes the credit. If the bill fails, he points to Congress and blames the GOP and weak-kneed Democrats.
Of course, someone will have to pay since so many people mistakenly call this mess ObamaCare. So you can expect Rahm Emmanuel to resign sometime thereafter—in keeping with the Czar’s expectation that Rahm’s downfall will probably happen within three months to be replaced by Valerie Jarrett.
So what have we learned? Every time the President cancels or delays a trip, read it as a warning sign that the Democrats, despite all statements to the contrary, simply lack the votes to get this Frankenstein passed. A vote on Sunday? Probably not—some other weird event will happen causing the Democrats to delay it again. Technical difficulties, perhaps. Maybe Easter recess will get in the way, but we can have the vote on Easter Monday. Whatever. There will be an excuse.
The New York Times story basically summarizes itself like this: the President is postponing his trip to ensure the vote succeeds on Sunday (doubtful, and if it does happen, the vote will fail).
Behind the CBO Estimate
The nonpartisan CBO, as you know, found that the bill will magically work exactly as the Democrats planned! Well...note how often the word nonpartisan accompanies any mention of the CBO. Almost like saying “independent auditors have confirmed....”
Fact: the Congressional Budget Office serves the Congress, and its members are not appointed by the majority party. That is not the same thing as nonpartisan: the CBO can only report on the information given to it in the bill as supplied by the party who submitted it. The CBO does not perform an independent review of the facts. They simply read the language in the Bill and check to see if the math adds up in relation to the budget submitted by the President. If the Czar were to write a Bill that said the Department of Defense will have its budget slashed by $200 billion so that this money can be given to NASA for an asteroid mining project (good luck catching up to the Gormogons’s own efforts there...we are way ahead o’ ya), the CBO will review that and say the math checks out.
The healthcare reform bill, as the Czar understands it, intends to raise money by taxation and pull money out of Medicare to produce the initial money to kick-start the new program. And the CBO agreed that the math checks out. The CBO does not render an opinion to say ”Yes, but the cutting of money out of Medicare will increase the deficit there” because that language is not in the bill.
Fortunately, most of the undecided Democratic representatives know this, and know that the CBO’s confirmation of the bill’s finances are a theoretical construct intended to self-justify what the President claimed would happen. The CBO is not and never has been in a position to say the bill makes financial sense: that is not their job. They merely make sure the dollars in the bill foot.
Votes Not There
Of course, the Times doesn’t mention any of this, but merely rubber stamps the CBO’s saying the bill’s finances line up with what the President promised. And that pro-bill Dems are excited by this news while Republicans hate it. And so far, two undecideds have already elected to vote Yes! for the bill based on this.
The article fails to mention that this does not provide the votes needed. Instead, it goes on about how reconciliation could fix problems with bill despite the objections of (sigh) the Evil GOP and their Insurance Company robber barons. Yeah, the GOP keeps saying that Medicare and tax increases prove the finances are rigged, and that the CBO admits its estimates are unreliable past a certain point, but basically concludes the bill will save a total of $1.2 trillion by about 2020. By the way, the CBO makes no such claim about savings!
Well, there you go. Both sides of the story, including the one you won’t get from the Times.
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