US President Barack Obama led Democrats in a triumphant, fist-pumping rally Saturday and confidently predicted Congress would rise to a century-old challenge and pass his health care overhaul.
“It is in your hands, it is time to pass health care reform for America, and I am confident that you are going to do it tomorrow,” told his allies on the eve of a cliffhanger House of Representatives vote. “Let’s get this done.”
The proposed overhaul, a compromise between rival House and Senate versions of the bill passed late last year, would bring the United States closer than ever to guaranteeing health care coverage to all of its citizens.
Using a blend of expanded government health programs and subsidies for millions to buy private insurance, the bill would add some 32 million Americans to the ranks of those covered for a total of 95 percent of Americans a century after Theodore Roosevelt called for a national approach to US health care.
As Obama spoke, thousands of protestors outside the Capitol chanted “Kill The Bill” and waved signs branding the president and his proposal “socialist” and lawmakers “corrupt,” cheered on by the Republican minority.
“The American people are making their voices heard, here on Capitol Hill and across America. It’s time for Washington Democrats to listen,” said House Minority Leader John Boehner said.
The House was to vote Sunday on the legislation after a year of bitter debate, months of setbacks, bitter partisanship, and legislative logjams — and a dramatic week of arm-twisting and head counts, led by Obama himself.
“This body has taken on some of the toughest votes and some of the toughest decisions in the history of Congress. Not because you were bound to win, but because you were bound to be true,” Obama told lawmakers worried that the broadly unpopular proposal could carry a political price in November mid-term elections.
“I know there is a tough vote. And I am actually confident, I’ve talked to some of you individually, that it will end up being the smart thing to do politically because I believe that good policy is good politics,” added Obama, who has staked his effectiveness and his legacy on the overhaul.
Asked whether that campaign had corralled the 216 members needed to pass the bill, Democratic House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters: “Clearly we believe we have the votes.”
Democrats set the stage for a series of House votes on Sunday: First on the “rule” to govern the debate, then a package of “fixes” to the Senate’s version of the bill, and then the Senate bill itself.
“We want to make it absolutely clear that we’re modifying the Senate bill,” Democratic Representative Chris Van Hollen, a close ally of Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, told reporters.
Van Hollen said that Democrats had dropped a controversial earlier plan, much mocked by Republicans, to avoid a direct up-or-down vote on the Senate plan and instead bundle it with the “rule” or the “fixes.”
At least one Democrat had indicated he wanted to back the overhaul but could not vote for that approach.
If the measure clears the House, the Senate would take up the changes next week under rules that deny Republicans their most potent weapon, an indefinite delay called a filibuster, which Democrats lack the votes to overcome.
Democrats raised the possibility that Obama could issue an executive order reaffirming the prohibition.
Outside the Capitol, demonstrator Andy Counts of Maryland denounced the bill as “an overreach of the government, too much socialism” as he waved a sign reading: “Lies. Bribes. Corrupt. Socialist. Rats.”
Asked whether he expected to change lawmakers’ minds, Counts demurred, but said: “This is a start for us, the beginning of another year, two years, of work to repeal this bill,” starting with November elections.
The White House touted support for the bill from the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association — top lobbies for US hospitals and doctors — and the powerful AARP lobby group for the elderly.
Democrats also touted an estimate by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office that says the bill could cut 130 billion dollars from the bloated US deficit through 2019 and 1.2 trillion in the subsequent 10 years.
Some of its most popular measures include bans on insurers denying coverage because of pre-existing illnesses, imposing lifetime caps on coverage or dropping people from coverage when they get sick.
Former acting CIA director explains why Trump’s inaction on Russian bounty scandal will make things worse
It was revealed nearly two weeks ago that the Russian government is paying a bounty to the Taliban for killing American soldiers.
Since then, President Donald Trump has denied that he and his administration didn't know anything about it. Then he claimed it was a hoax. Now it has become clear that the stories are not only true but that if Trump read his presidential daily briefing in 2019, he would have been aware of the problem.
Speaking to the House Thursday, Trump's former acting CIA director Michael Morell explained that things are being made far worse by the president's denial.
Here are 7 hilarious videos about wearing COVID-19 masks to send people who won’t wear them
While late-night shows are off for a Summer break, Americans are glued to TikTok and Twitter for their humor and every folks have delivered.
The latest trend is to mock fools who refuse to wear masks. While many people who refuse to wear a mask tuck their tails and sulk as they walk away, some take it to a whole new level of fury. Those precious souls are being mocked and shamed all around the world.
Here are seven videos that are hilarious or adorable that encourage wearing masks during the COVID-19 pandemic:
Wearing a mask is like wearing a lifejacket.https://twitter.com/mattbooshell/status/1280933495674732544
Trump tells Fox News the ‘Black Lives Matter’ sign on Fifth Avenue is like he’s being ‘prosecuted’
President Donald Trump appeared to reveal another quid pro quo during an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity.
MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell pointed it out during an interview with Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA).
"I was very nice to Mayor de Blasio. I got him ventilators when he needed them... I got him the gowns. I got him the masks. I got him everything. Then he throws a big Black Lives Matter sign right down in the middle of Fifth Avenue. I was so good to him and to Gov. Cuomo, like nobody's ever been good. And then all you end up doing out of that place is getting prosecuted."