06.30.2009 0

Time for Blue Dogs to Put their Money Where their Mouths Are

  • On: 07/20/2009 09:20:11
  • In: Health Care
  • By Robert Romano

    Last week, the director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Douglas Elmendorf, delivered devastating testimony that the ObamaCare government-run socialized medicine now being proposed will not include “the fundamental changes that would be necessary to reduce the trajectory of federal health spending by a significant amount.”

    “On the contrary,” he said, “the legislation significantly expands the federal responsibility for health-care.” Mr. Elmendorf says the cost curve is being raised instead of cut. Previously, Barack Obama and Democrat leaders had promised to cut the growth in spending of health care programs with a “deficit-neutral” government-run proposal.

    So much for that. Mr. Elmendorf’s testimony means that the so-called public “option” will only add to the unsustainable, unfunded entitlements burdening taxpayers over the next century, as ALG News also reported last week in “The Hidden Cost of ObamaCare.”

    The stark warning from the CBO of the skyrocketing costs taxpayers will face under the legislation now puts the burden on the 40 Blue Dog Democrats who promised in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to oppose any legislation that was not deficit-neutral to make good on their promise.

    In other words, it’s time for the Blue Dogs to put up—or as usual—roll over and play dead.

    The letter was sent to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer. Here is the list of 40 members. Congressman Mike Ross (AR-CD4), who is leading the apparent Blue Dog rebellion, suggested to the Washington Post that Mr. Elmendorf’s testimony would strengthen his coalition’s hand and galvanize their efforts.

    According to Congressman Ross, “There’s no way they can pass this bill on the House floor. Not even close.”

    According to The Hill, the Chairman of the Blue Dog Health Care Task Force claims to have 10 House members on the committee considering the legislation that will block the bill if his group’s draft amendments are not accepted.

    “Last time I checked, it took seven Democrats to stop a bill in Energy and Commerce,” he said.

    Mr. Ross needs to go even further than he has. For now, he appears to be merely attempting the equivalent of fixing the propeller on a plane without wings.

    It still will not fly with the American people, who are in no mood to accept a mealy-mouth compromise that hands the American people a bill that cannot be paid. This year alone, taxpayers face a $1.8 trillion CBO-projected budget deficit that will be poured atop the $11.4 trillion national debt that threatens the nation with insolvency.

    If the Blue Dogs now support this proposal with cosmetic “cost-cutting” measures, they will lose what credibility they have left. As ALG News reported last week in “Blue Dogs Draw Straws,” the coalition, despite its 52-large membership—more than enough to stop legislation in the House—has not been able to stop a single gargantuan measure from the $787 billion “stimulus” to the Waxman-Markey energy tax grab.

    According to the group’s website, the Blue Dog Democrats claim to be a “fiscal conservative” coalition in the House of Representatives, dedicated to “balancing the budget and ridding taxpayers of the burden the national debt places on them.”

    It’s time for the Blue Dogs to put up their money where their mouths are. If they forge together a grand compromise—they will hand the American people the largest entitlement program in human history. And, it will be their last betrayal ensuring them not only a trip to the doghouse, but a one-way ticket to political oblivion, as well.

    Robert Romano is the ALG Senior News Editor.

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