Earlier today, Senator Mitch McConnell’s office posted a press release criticizing the attempt to “rush” through the Health Care Reform Bill, arguing that Congress has not spent sufficient time on this legislation in comparison with other important bills.
Republicans average 10 days on big ticket legislation.
McConnell overlooks the fact that when the Republicans were in charge, the entire Congress averaged 10 days on critical trillion dollar items of legislation: 9 days spent on H.J.Res.114, the bill authorizing the invasion of Iraq, considered from Oct. 2 to 11, 2002; 11 days spent on H.R. 1836, the First Bush Tax Cut, considered from May 15 to 26, 2001; and 10 days spent on H.R. 2, the Second Bush Tax Cut (after Sen. Grassley’s amendment gutted the first version on May 15, 2003), considered from Feb. 27/ May 15 to May 23, 2003. (For details see: http://rethinkingpatientsafety.typepad.com/ )
Why aren’t over 400 hearings spanning 70 years enough?
In contrast to this 10 day average for Republican consideration of big ticket items of legislation, Congress has spent over 70 years on health care reform, holding 451 hearings, 175 hearings during Democratic administrations (Roosevelt: 8 hearings, Truman: 71, Carter: 11, and Clinton 85), and 276 hearings during Repubican adminstrations (Eisenhower: 19, Nixon: 73, Ford: 56, Reagan: 22, Bush 1st: 77, Bush 2nd: 29) . (See: http://tinyurl.com/hearings-on-health-care )
McConnell ignores the fact that Republicans introduced health care reform (Theodore Roosevelt in 1912), and championed it nearly a century ago (See the 1928-32 publications of 28 volumes by Committee on the Costs of Medical Care chaired by Republican AMA Pres. Dr. Ray Lyman Wilbur).
Do not let McConnell’s misinformation further delay our long overdue health care reform.
Lee Tilson writes at RethinkingPatientSatety.com