Archive for September, 2009

Service Employees International Union, ACORN & Healthcare

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

Last May when various national healthcare organizations met with President Obama at the White House I wondered why the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) was present.  Of course, I recalled the major role SEIU played in the election of President Obama.

However, it was still unusual to see that organization being associated with the likes of the American Medical Association, Advance Medical Technology Association, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, American Hospital Association and the America’s Health Insurance Plans.

Today I got my answer when columnist Kathleen Parker had a piece pointing out what a national healthcare option might mean to a union in search of new dues-paying recruits.

That sure explains why the Service Employees International Union  is working so hard to help President Obama pass his healthcare reform legislation.

An Idea for the Gazette

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

Here is an idea for The Charleston Gazette.  The Washington Post is asking it’s readers to weigh in as its editorial board prepares an endorsement in the Virginia gubernatorial race.  Readers may send an email making a case for their candidate in 200 words or less.   The Post will publish as many endorsements as they can on the Local Opinions page and throughout the week.  

Now let’s see what The Charleston Gazette does with this one.

A Must Read

Sunday, September 20th, 2009

Charles Krauthammer had a great column in today’s Sunday Gazette-Mail.  It should be read by everyone.  Their web site did not carry it so I hunted it down.

West Virginia Strike Back

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

West Virginia needs to strike back at the Obama administration.  The anti-coal mining decision to withhold approval of 79 coal mining permits needs to be answered.

There is a new organization growing in Appalachia that provides such an opportunity.  It supports coal mining and our local economies.

Visit the website of FACES of Coal (Federation for American Coal, Energy and Security) and join the movement.

Obama Strikes Out At West Virginia

Friday, September 11th, 2009

President Obama is getting even with West Virginia that rejected him in the 2008 primary and general election.

 The Obama run Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made a vindictive decision today which will withhold approval of 79 coal mining permits.  The President is shutting down jobs when the unemployment rate is nearing 10% in the country.   Is this to show West Virginia who is the boss?

Our delegation in Congress should show him who’s in charge here.  Senators Byrd and Rockefeller and members of the House of Representatives Mollohan, Rahall and Capito should withhold their vote on his pet healthcare reform legislation.  The President needs to understand they too can play hardball.

Speaking of healthcare reform I assume President Obama does not care about the additional cost to the Medicaid program when West Virginia coal miners can no longer have healthcare insurance.  The lost of jobs in the mining industry is the tip of the iceberg.  He has the entire West Virginia economy under attack.

It would be my further suggestion that our WV delegation should organize all Members of Congress from coal producing states to follow their lead.

Those other states who did not vote for Obama had better be on the look out.  He likely has plans to come after them.

My Reaction

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

First, let me say I believe we need to find a way to provide healthcare to those who need it but without destroying our current system.  I believe Americans are willing to fix the healthcare system but will not buy into schemes that break the bank.

Now let’s talk about the political drama in the House Chamber.  I am not sure the speech will re-energize Obama’s healthcare plan.  He may get a few days of increased support but that will soon change.

Nor do I believe his call for the “bickering to end” will be heeded.

The speech was full of confusing details.  More importantly I am concerned about Obama’s statement “significant details need to be worked out”.  However, it was clever that he offered a plan building on others’ ideas who were seated in the House Chamber.

I thought the objective last night was to clarify his plan.

The speech did not move in a direction that would create a bipartisan environment to accomplish healthcare reform.  It was conciliatory in part but overall it sounded like a partisan campaign speech.

That said I thought he was trying to show Congress and the Nation he is a strong political leader – not just a strong candidate.

He still sounded like a candidate to me.

Manchin Numbers

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Governor Joe Manchin has been an outstanding Governor.   This clearly explains the impressive numbers in the survey of West Virginia voters by Mark Blankenship Enterprises.  Manchin’s overall approval rating was 78 percent.

Unless Manchin is planning in 2012 to seek a U. S. Senate seat or run for the House of Representatives these numbers serve little political purpose. 

Of course, he can use them to press his agenda in the Legislature.  It is there that his numbers really count at this point.

Any Healthcare Bill Will Do

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Obama has been struggling with healthcare reform since entering the presidency.  The problem is two fold.

First, he turned the drafting of legislation over to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.  Secondly, he never could explain what they had done or settle on what he wanted.

Now that he has reached a make-or-break point after nearly eight months as president Obama says he will be more “prescriptive”.  He needs a healthcare bill to keep his legislative agenda alive – any bill.

Without some form of healthcare success, cap and trade, revamping the country’s financial structure and his many other initiatives are frozen in place.

This week’s presidential address to re-energize Obama’s healthcare fiasco is just a front.

The real effort to be more “prescriptive” started on the Sunday talk shows. 

 The message I heard was that the Administration would be happy with anything – as a foundation to start another run at turning healthcare over to the government.

Does Obama Face a 2012 Challenge In His Own Party?

Monday, September 7th, 2009

This Rasmussen Report I am sending to you verbatim. 

“Leading liberals are already thinking the unthinkable:  Challenging President Obama for the Democratic nomination in 2012.  According to a report on the left-leaning Huffington Post website, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann and Eugene Robinson, an African-American national columnist for The Washington Post, discussed just such a possibility Thursday night.”

You have to “read all”.

Democrats Are Losing Independents Support

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

Congress returns from a summer recess on Tuesday.  President Obama will address a joint session of Congress mid-week.  He must believe another speech or a more “prescriptive” health care plan will put his Democrats colleagues at ease.  Well, he may be too late.

Democrats should be terrified by the loss of support from Independents according to a politics column written by Charlie Cook for The National Journal.  The blame is squarely placed on President Obama. 

It is not too late for Republicans to give careful thought to the impact Independents can have on their success in 2010 & 2012.