Representative Joe Wilson must be thrown to the dogs. He has done what no Congressman is allowed. He has not only insulted President Obama publically, he has done so in complete and utter veracity. This has forced the Democrats to deal with Joe Wilson in two seemingly contradictory manners.
They have demonized him in front of the media. He is now the number one DNCC target among incumbent Republican members of congress. They have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for his opponent and are determined to take him out. As Nessa so capably pointed out earlier, they have ordered him to publically apologize, or face Censure before the House as a whole.
Meanwhile, outside the spotlight, dingy, beetle-like bureaucrats work to scrub the legislation of exactly what Joe Wilson called out as dishonest. Before CNN stuffs it down the memory hole, here’s what exercised Representative Wilson. Barck Obama claimed that no illegal aliens would get health care at taxpayer expense. However, that’s not what the HR 3200 truly said.
In its summary of the bill, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) states, “Under HR 3200, all legal permanent residents (LPRs), non-immigrants, and unauthorized aliens who meet the substantial presence test … would be required to obtain health insurance.”1 Substantial presence is defined as having been in the United States for at least 31 days during the current year and at least 183 days during the current year and previous two years. No mention is made of legal status in the legislation for determining substantial presence.
Thus, to remedy the fact that Congressman Joe Wilson caught the president red-handed and made it public knowledge via his outburst, The White House released the following talking points memo. So not only was Joe Wilson wrong and evil, but here’s what The White House is doing to make sure everything he complained about is expunged from the bill.
The bullet points sent tonight by the White House :
* Undocumented immigrants would not be able to buy private insurance on the exchange. Those who are lawfully present in this country would be able to participate.
* Undocumented immigrants would be able to buy insurance in the non-exchange private market, just as they do today. That market will shrink as the exchange takes hold, but it will still exist and will be subject to reforms such as the bans on pre-existing conditions and caps.
* Verification will be required when purchasing health insurance on the exchange. One option is the SAVE program (Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements) which states currently use to make sure that undocumented immigrants don't participate in safety-net programs for which they are ineligible.
* There would be no change in the law that requires emergency rooms to treat people who need emergency care, including undocumented immigrants. There is already a federal grant program that compensates states for emergency room costs associated with treatment of undocumented immigrants, a provision sponsored by a Republican lawmaker.
So publically, the Democrats subject Joe Wilson to Censorship via Censure. Privately, they have Senator Dorgan and Senator Baucus quickly scrub the Senate Bill to make sure Joe Wilson hasn’t accurately described what makes it to the floor. I’m sure Joe Wilson would practice humility and grace in accepting a public apology from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. I somehow believe she lacks the integrity.
Three points immediately spring to mind. First, the Democrats resent debate and public opposition. For the crime of publically disputing a leading Democrat, Joe Wilson must be destroyed. Iranian Mullahs temper dissent with more class and dignity than the United States Democratic Party.
Second, the Democrats really wanted to give illegal aliens access to taxpayer funded healthcare. The failure of a House resolution to prevent HR 3200 from using the 31 day standard for presence in the United States was a bigger tell on this subject than the one Teddy KGB had in the movie Rounders.
Third, the latest moves in the Senate and The White House may be more symbolic than real. The game plan here involves passing this through reconciliation with the House. The Democrats get what they want through the House; they get what Republicans are dumb enough to agree to through the Senate. They then reconcile to the House version and use their parliamentary majorities to ram it down the GOP’s throat.
The Democrats have every intention of passing health care reform that covers all illegal aliens and involves a public option. If America doesn’t wake up, and if the GOP’s beleaguered Senate minority doesn’t mount a defense worthy of The Red Army at Stalingrad, this is precisely what Barack Obama will sign into law by mid-November. I hail Congressman Wilson for sounding the cry like Paul Revere.