Sen. Jim DeMint:
This goes to the fundamental purpose of senate rules: to prevent a tyrannical majority from trampling the rights of the minority or of future congresses.Hold that thought.
It was only a matter of time before the noxious oozings from the Reid bill started leaking out. But this provoked an audible what the what?!? from me this morning:
Section 3403 of Senator Harry Reid’s amendment requires that it shall not be in order in the Senate or the House of Representatives to consider any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that would repeal or otherwise change this subsection.That is one thing we can count on.
[RedState:] The good news is that this only applies to one section of the Obamacare legislation. The bad news is that it applies to regulations imposed on doctors and patients by the Independent Medicare Advisory Boards a/k/a the Death Panels.
[Pat Austin:] Oh, they'll tell you that's not what it means, but they'll also tell you that this bill lowers the deficit, doesn't fund abortions, and doesn't cover illegals.
More from John McCormack at the Weekly Standard, quoting Sen. Jim DeMint:
there's one provision that i found particularly troubling and it's under section c, titled "limitations on changes to this subsection."
and i quote -- "it shall not be in order in the senate or the house of representatives to consider any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that would repeal or otherwise change this subsection."
this is not legislation. it's not law. this is a rule change. it's a pretty big deal. we will be passing a new law and at the same time creating a senate rule that makes it out of order to amend or even repeal the law.
i'm not even sure that it's constitutional, but if it is, it most certainly is a senate rule. i don't see why the majority party wouldn't put this in every bill. if you like your law, you most certainly would want it to have force for future senates.
i mean, we want to bind future congresses. this goes to the fundamental purpose of senate rules: to prevent a tyrannical majority from trampling the rights of the minority or of future co congresses.
We already know they don't give a crap about the Constitution. The Senate's dark victory was a triumph over, not of, that quaint document.
According to page 1001 of the Reid bill, the purpose of the Independent Medical Advisory Board is to "reduce the per capita rate of growth in Medicare spending." For any fearmongers out there tempted to call an unelected body that recommends Medicare cuts a "Death Panel," let me be clear. According to page 1004, IMAB proposals "shall not include any recommendation to ration health care"--you know, just like the bill says there's no funding for abortion.
Paging Sarah Palin: the death panel is unkillable.
Update: A friend suggests that Congress could kill IMAB by refusing to fund it. So much for zombie death panels, I guess, for now. Also, the Senate could change the rules to rule repealing or amending IMAB in order. But that would take a 2/3 majority. The Democrats aren't playing by the rules; they may be violating the Constitution.
Again, you have to wonder: have they finally gone too far?
*More noxious oozings:
According to a Senate legislative aide, the scandal-plagued Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now could qualify for grants under this provision. ACORN would also qualify for funding on page 150 of the underlying Reid bill, which says that "community and consumer-focused nonprofit groups" may receive grants to "conduct public education activities to raise awareness of the availability of qualified health plans."Because we know how good ACORN is at counseling citizens in need.
*How desperately is the Senate in need of reform? Reid defends legislation by bribery:
Harry Reid says any senator who didn’t get a “deal” is a sucker. Well, he didn’t quite say it that way — but almost: “I don’t know if there’s a senator who doesn’t have something in this bill that’s important to them. … And if they don’t have something in it that’s important to them, then it’s doesn’t speak well for them.” Next we’ll be hearing that the Cornhusker Kickback is “golden.”Linked at Michelle Malkin (buzzworthy)
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