Thursday, July 10, 2008
Some of yesterday's senate voting results
Yesterday's senate votes on a couple of significant bills:
(HR 6331) A special thanks to Senator Ted Kennedy for making it to work yesterday, the first time since his recent surgery, to vote to deny the 10.5 percent cut in doctor's reimbursements for Medicare patients they treat. If Bush vetoes the bill as he has promised he would, as it now stands based on yesterday's vote, the senate would have the votes to override Bush.
Many senators in favor of cutting Medicare reimbursements to doctors, aside from those just wishing to kill the whole program, did so expressing the fear this could impact funding for Medicare Advantage, which is a nice name for a program that sounds even better than the original Medicare.
But Medicare Advantage is a program administered through private insurance companies that often lure Medicare patients away from Medicare with promises of free dental or other such enticements. But once those folks enroll they discover they have lost their choice of doctors, there are exclusions, or denials of tests and or treatments, as determined by an insurance company and its company doctors instead of one's doctor of choice under the original Medicare.
Dada is greatly appreciative of Senator Kennedy's vote yesterday for, without it, it appeared Bush would again get his goddamned way of $billions and billions for war and bombs whenever he demands it from the normally spineless congress, while crying, "We can't afford it!" as he slashes social programs affecting millions of Americans (besides Medicare seniors). Now there is a chance Medicare may not fade and die quite as quickly as the insurance industry and those supporting it over the best interests of private citizens were hoping.
(HR 6301) The controversial FISA bill granting telecoms immunity for spying on Americans passed the senate, 69 - 28, with three not voting. John McCain did not vote. (I don't know why. Perhaps he was off to Columbia or elsewhere introducing himself as the next president of the U.S.?)
Some of the minority still voting to uphold the Constitution instead of immunity for the telecom giants included democratic senators Biden, Boxer, Clinton, and Feingold.
Independent senator Bernie Sanders voted "nay" while independent Joe Liberman said "yea."
Republicans voting in favor of immunity for the telecoms (and Bush and Cheney) included my very own Texas senators, Cornyn and Hutchison, along with Diane Feinstein and Barack Obama.