What You Need To Know BEFORE They Vote

Posted on October 6, 2009. Filed under: General Info | Tags: , , , |

Sen. Thomas Carper (D.-Del.), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, told CNSNews.com that he does not “expect” to read the actual legislative language of the committee’s health care bill because it is “confusing” and that anyone who claims they are going to read it and understand it is fooling people. 

 

Senator Carper says the language is too difficult, so difficult in fact, he is not a proponent of posting the legislative version. He does think it would be fine to post the “translation” of the bill for citizens to read. He says that’s what those voting will be “reading” instead of the actual bill.

My fear is what would be “lost” in the translation??? Do these people really know what they are voting for? Do they care?

Published by Dave Levinthal 10/01/2009

Hidden ‘Bundles’ of Lobbyist Giving Show Full Court Press by Health Care Donors

 http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2009/10/hidden-bundles-of-lobbyist-giv.html

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A month-long collaborative investigation by the Sunlight Foundation and the Center for Responsive Politics has uncovered never-before-seen webs of campaign contributions from outside lobbyists and their clients, who are all important players in the healthcare reform, to key members of Congress.

The investigation identified outside lobbyists that donated to the same members of Congress as their clients, and strongly suggests that special interest giving is enhanced by the K Street contributors they hire.

Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee and author of the main health care reform bill now being debated in the Senate, was one of the biggest beneficiaries of this one-two punch from the lobbyists and their clients. From January 2007 through June 2009, Baucus collected contributions from 37 outside lobbyists representing PhRMA, the pharmaceutical industry’s chief trade association, and 36 lobbyists who listed drug maker Amgen Inc. as their client.

In all, 11 major health and insurance firms had their contributions to Baucus boosted through extra donations from 10 or more of their outside lobbyists. (See chart here and full list here.)

Nor was Baucus alone—other members also received contributions from the employees, their family members and political action committees of health care firms and from the outside lobbyists that represented them. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., collected lobbyist “bundles” from 14 major healthcare organizations. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., actually led the list, with 22 organizations—though much of that money was directed at his presidential campaign last year.

Other leading recipients of combined lobbyist-client giving were Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, and Democratic Senators Chris Dodd of Connecticut and Mark Udall of Colorado.

PhRMA and Amgen were the organizations with the most outside lobbyists chipping in with extra contributions. Some 32 members of Congress got money from 10 or more PhRMA lobbyists over the last two-and-a-half years. Amgen’s lobbyists did the same for 24 members.

Behind them were Roche Holdings, with 16 members, Pfizer Inc. with 13, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield with 11.

There is no indication that the extra giving by lobbyists was part of a planned effort by the healthcare firms to solidify their support among key members of Congress. But whether coordinated or not, the newly-found clusters of lobbyist giving clearly illustrate the intensity of the full-court press that the industry is currently waging on Capitol Hill.

In all, 61 members of Congress—39 in the Senate, 22 in the House, 38 Democrats and 23 Republicans—got money from 10 or more outside lobbyists whose healthcare or health insurance industry clients also contributed to their campaigns.

Tracking Your Representatives’ Health Care Cash

Published by CRP on June 25, 2009 (For the most up-to-date health care charts and downloadable spreadsheets included in this blog post, check out our health care tools page.)

(The chart updated on August 14, 2009, to include 2009 second quarter campaign contributions.)

If you’re trying to understand all of the reasons why your representatives may support or oppose certain health care reform measures, we can add the money-in-politics puzzle pieces. Here’s a cool tool that brings together data from various parts of OpenSecrets.org to show how much money each current lawmaker has raised from various health-related industries and the health sector overall since 1989 (including the haul of President Obama, who tops every one of these lists). Sort by column to discover that Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), a member of the Senate Health Committee, is the top recipient of pharmaceutical cash, or that Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), has collected more money from health insurers than all other current members of Congress. Please note that this includes contributions from individuals and political action committees to both the lawmakers’ candidate committees and leadership PACs. Also, the health insurance industry numbers here are a combination of contributions from health and accident insurers, HMOs and other health services.

Senate Finance Committee

Deomocrats

MAX BAUCUS, MT

JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER IV, WV

KENT CONRAD, ND

JEFF BINGAMAN, NM

JOHN F. KERRY, MA

BLANCHE L. LINCOLN, AR

RON WYDEN, OR

CHARLES E. SCHUMER, NY

DEBBIE STABENOW, MI

MARIA CANTWELL, WA

BILL NELSON, FL

ROBERT MENENDEZ, NJ

THOMAS CARPER, DE

Republicans

CHUCK GRASSLEY, IA

ORRIN G. HATCH, UT

OLYMPIA J. SNOWE, ME

JON KYL, AZ

JIM BUNNING, KY

MIKE CRAPO, ID

PAT ROBERTS, KS

JOHN ENSIGN, NV

MIKE ENZI, WY

JOHN CORNYN, TX

HOW MUCH HAS YOUR SENATOR OR REPRESENTATIVE BEEN PAID FROM THE HEALTH CARE INDUSTRY? FIND OUT HERE:

http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2009/06/-name-office-party-health.html

WHY IS THIS OK? IF YOU LOOK AT NEARLY ALL OF THOSE SERVING US IN WASHINGTON, YOU WILL FIND MAJOR CONTRIBUTIONS BY THOSE INDUSTRIES THEY MAKE POLICY FOR .  SHOULDN”T “REAL CHANGE” BE INSTITUTED TO STOP THIS PRACTICE?

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One Response to “What You Need To Know BEFORE They Vote”

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No, they don’t know what they are voting on and I personally don’t believe they care. They’ll all just try to take away something politically from all this. I don’t believe “the people” are represented in Washington these days.


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