The Healthcare Reform Bill is heading to the Senate for debate. Republicans and conservative Democrats are trying to do all they can to stop the passing of the bill. One of the Republicans is Senator Jim DeMint who gives his opinion on the current situation.
“They voted to proceed to a shell bill that was not the House bill. Normally the House passes something and we vote to proceed to it for debate. The Democrats didn’t want any of their members to have to vote on the House bill so they just got a shell tax bill and then we proceed to that. Then they will add the Senate version of the Obama care to it,” says DeMint.
The bill includes a public insurance plan to compete with private insurers, it would cover five million fewer Americans than the House bill would, it allows an option for abortion coverage, and puts emphasis on employers, penalizing any employer with more than 50 employees who does not offer coverage. DeMint says there are no signs of having a debate on having a government take-over.
“There has not been a debate on this, and there won’t be as far as whether or not we have a government-run plan. That is what Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and President Obama want. Our goal is to try to stop this and first of all show what’s in it. We’ll be offering amendments to get it, different aspects of this. The question is whether all the Democrats will vote to move to the final bill. They have to get 60 one more time in order to move to a final vote,” says DeMint.
The legislation is more than 2,000 pages long, and DeMint believes some Democrats are voting for it and haven’t even read it.
“You can be sure no one has read it. I’ve been trying to get the staff to break this thing down. It’s 2,000 pages of legalese, and you can be confident that no member of the Senate that voted for this bill has read it. And they won’t before this whole thing is over. But, we just have to expose all the myths about it, and we’re gonna be going to floor saying on page 126 in this section, this is what it says, this is what it means, and we’re gonna do that for as long as we can,” says DeMint.
DeMint says he thinks a government take-over will end up costing everyone.
“I think it’s this idea of something for free. Whether it was a stimulus bill, going to get all this free money for the state, or ‘Cash for Clunkers,’ or tax credits for first time home builders, all that’s something for free. But, we’re gonna have to pay for it, our children, our grandchildren will be paying for it their whole lives, it’s all borrowed money. And the real cost of this plan that they just put on the floor for this debate is $2.5 trillion over ten years,” says DeMint.
DeMint says he thinks there is a 50 percent chance that the health care bill will be stopped. One Democrat vote could stop the bill. Senator Lindsey Graham is also against the bill.