Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Budget Bill Abomination Being Voted on Today in Congress

Back on Dec. 19, by a vote of 212 to 206, the U.S. House passed a major budget-cutting measure -- championed by the White House and conservative GOP leaders -- that would throw some of the poorest off the Medicaid roles and deny aid to some of the neediest college students and cut other social safety-net programs.

Small changes in the Senate version of this bill has forced it back to the House for a re-vote, which is supposed to come today.

Madame Virginia Foxx said in Boone last week that she can't wait to vote FOR this atrocity and denied that a single solitary living soul on this or on any other planet would be hurt by the cuts -- a lie so transparent, so cynical in its calculation that ancient potted ficus plants in the congresswoman's vicinity simply turned black and crispy from their proximity to such heartless carbon dioxide.

But according to today's WashPost, passage of this budget bill is far from assured. N.C. Congressman Walter "Freedom Fries" Jones, as conservative a Republican as treads the earth, says he's going to vote against it. Partly because "on Friday, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office informed lawmakers that $28 billion in cuts to Medicaid over the next decade would impose new costs on 13 million poor and working poor recipients. By 2015, new fees would end insurance coverage for 65,000 Medicaid enrollees, 60 percent of them children."

That kind of stuff doesn't impress The Madam. Her cardiovascular system would set off metal detectors at the airport.

One of December's yes votes, Republican Rob Simmons of Connecticut, has announced he will vote no today. Said Simmons, "Representation is only effective if the elected official listens to the people. In a democracy, the government must serve the people, not reign over them. I have listened and concluded that the budget, as it stands, falls short."

What kind of Republican is this!? One that LISTENS to his constituents!? How novel is that!?

ADDENDUM: This a.m.'s N&O points out another way this budget bill will hurt North Carolina counties ... "County social service agencies could lose millions in reimbursements or be forced to change their priorities for placing foster children."

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