November 10, 2009

Lieberman's go-it-alone health care stance draws praise from GOP, criticism from Democrats

In blue collar Connecticut, where U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman found the support he needed to secure reelection three years ago, Republicans are hailing the senator’s battle against the Democrats’ proposed health care overhaul.
Democrats, though, are increasingly disheartened – even disgusted – with their party’s former vice presidential standard-bearer.
“Joe Lieberman has broken every promise he made to get re-elected,” said Allen Marko, a former City Council candidate.
He said Lieberman lied about backing a Democrat for president, lied about the Iraq War and is now breaking another promise to pass health care reform.
“It's all about Joe and what will get him the spotlight. And when it isn't, it’s about protecting the health insurance and pharmaceutical industry, two of his biggest financial supporters,” Marko said.
But GOP activists said they strongly support the junior senator’s bid to block a public option for health care.
“Not only do I approve of Sen. Lieberman's intent to filibuster, I'd be his water carrier if I could,” said Mary Alford, this year’s unsuccessful Republican mayoral contender.
Republican city Councilor Ken Cockayne, who opposes the public option idea, said, “Joe has always been willing to stand up for what he believes even if it means standing alone.”
“Health care reform is necessary, but the plan being proposed is over reaching considerably and Joe knows this,” said Cockayne, an insurance seller. “If their motivation is truly to promote competition and to bring prices down, there are many other alternatives to be tried first.”
David Mills, a new GOP city councilor, said, “This is too big a topic and too expensive to have it forced through the process because some people want another government program.”
“There are so many inefficiencies in government run programs. What makes anyone think that this will be different?” Mills said.
Former Mayor William Stortz, a Republican, said, “One has to give Sen. Lieberman credit for having the courage of his convictions. He has access to more information than most of us, and obviously is not comfortable with what is being proposed.”
Stortz said he has many questions about the plan and is sure others do, too.
“I am happy that the senator is trying to get the legislation out in the open and also to have it more reflect what the people want,” Stortz said.
“We cry for more non-partisan behavior, yet when it happens as it is in this case, the individuals are castigated. As I see it, Sen. Lieberman is still playing by the rules of the Senate,” Stortz said.
Lieberman has said he backs health care reform, but opposes a public option that would include government-run health care for some Americans who choose it.
Democrats who back the public option, including Sen. Chris Dodd and U.S. Reps. John Larson and Chris Murphy, said it’s vital to the plan because it will hold insurance rates down.
Dodd said he hasn’t talked with Lieberman about the issue.
“Joe makes up his own mind,” Dodd said. “We disagree on this one.”
“Joe has said it’s a matter of conscience,” said Larson. “Everybody has to follow their own conscience.”
Dodd said no one has said Lieberman should be ousted from the Democratic caucus over the issue.
“This isn’t about where Joe stands or I stand,” said Dodd. “This is a very important issue.”
People are worried about whether they can hang on to their job or their home, or whether they’ll have health care when they get sick, said Dodd, not about political disputes.
“Most people in this state have little or no interest in that,” said Dodd.
Larson said it’s also important to look at the impact the legislation would have on so many people.
“I think a public option’s what makes the bill,” said Larson. “It provides the competition.”
Former city Councilor Craig Minor, a Democrat, said it is obvious that Lieberman’s “real concern is for insurance industry profits, not sick and dying Americans.”
“Decreased premiums means decreased profit for the insurance industry,” Minor said.
“Those leeches will always demand their quart of blood from the sick and dying,” Minor said. “Thanks for standing up for us, Joe!”
Alford said that free competition “will bring those premiums down a lot faster than anything else” that anyone can do.
“Washington should not be in the business of being in business,” she said. “They can't manage the job description they have and they want us to trust them with health decisions? Laughable.
So I say, go for it Sen. Lieberman. Fight that good fight.”

To see more comments about Lieberman’s stance, please continue reading:

Mary Alford

Not only do I approve of Sen. Lieberman's intent to filibuster, I'd be his water carrier if I could .
This whole "debate" is not about health care but about power and control over every aspect of our lives. Our so-called leaders are voting on something most of them haven't even read and something they didn't write.
Public "option" is nothing of the sort. In the fine print, as it were, are requirements for the purchase of insurance with resulting heavy financial penalties for failure to do so. Nowhere in our Constitution does it give the Federal Government the power to demand that any citizen buy anything. This is so far out of their purview it's ridiculous. Add to that the fact that every single thing they try to run they run into the ground and you have a recipe for disaster, at our expense.
Take a look at Oregon and Massachusetts. Disasters - both of them - and yet Washington wants us to believe that they have somehow managed, in all of their infinite wisdom and knowledge, to figure out how to do this on a national level. Can anyone say Canada? Americans are not going to Canada for medical care but countless Canadians are coming here to get the care they would have to wait too long for in their own country.
Just a thought. How about trying tort reform and opening state borders for insurance sales?
Competition in a free market society will bring those premiums down a lot faster than anything else. Washington should not be in the business of being in business. They can't manage the job description they have and they want us to trust them with health decisions? Laughable.
So I say, go for it Sen. Lieberman. Fight that good fight. I'm with ya.


David Mills

I do believe there needs to be reform in health care. However, I do not believe the public option is necessarey to get the cost of insurance down. The Democratic controlled Congress is trying to ram this health bill down our throats and they have not read the bill and are not representing their constituants desires. Most people do not want the public option.
This being said, I believe Senator Lieberman is following the interests of the people of the state and is telling the Congress where he stands. He is not looking for a "Sweetheart" deal from the leadership and is acting in our best interest.
I realize his position is controversial. However, this is too big a topic and too expensive to have it forced through the process because some people want another Government program. There are so many ineffeciencies in goivernment run programs. What makes anyone think that this will be different?

Craig Minor

If you analyze the closing comment in his Hartford Courant op-ed piece, it’s obvious that his real concern is for insurance industry profits, not sick and dying Americans. “A new public option will likely increase premiums for the 170 million Americans who already have private insurance…” Hmm…will “likely increase premiums”. Why is that? Shouldn’t more competition DECREASE the cost of premiums? Oh, of course…because decreased premiums means decreased profit for the insurance industry. Those leeches will ALWAYS demand their quart of blood from the sick and dying. Thanks for standing up for us, Joe!

William Stortz

One has to give Senator Lieberman for having the courage of his convictions. He has access to more information than most of us, and obviously is not comfortable with what is being proposed. I too have questions, as do many others I am sure, and I am happy that the Senator is trying to get the legislation out in the open and also to have it more reflect what the people want.
We cry for more non-partisan behavior, yet when it happens as it is in this case, the individual(s) are castigated. As I see it, Senator Lieberman is still playing by the rules of the Senate.
I say give the Senator credit, put it all on the table, LISTEN to the people and then vote. In our government, a democracy, the majority stills rules.
Keep at it Senator!


Ken Cockayne

Joe has always been willing to stand up for what he believes even if it means standing alone. I respect him a lot for the stances he takes even though I might not always agree with him.
As far as his stance on this issue, I believe he is correct. Health care reform is necessary, but the plan being proposed is over reaching considerably and Joe knows this. If their motivation is truly to promote competition and to bring prices down, there are many other alternatives to be tried first, like allowing purchases of health insurance across state borders. Lifting some of these regulations will promote more competition then a public option and would not cost the taxpayers millions of dollars. There are also others, mandates on insurance carriers are very costly and I believe some are unnecessary. Many of these mandates do not allow coverage’s to be tailored to the individual or the group.

Allen Marko

Joe Lieberman has broken every promise he made to get re-elected:
I will work to get a Democrat in the White House - supported McCain.
Nobody wants the war in Iraq to end more than I do - Tried to spread it to Iran.
Now he has broken another - I represent the best chance to pass health care reform.
It's all about Joe and what will get him the spotlight. And when it isn't, it’s about protecting the health insurance and pharmaceutical industry, two of his biggest financial supporters.


*******
Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com

20 comments:

Go JOE GO said...

Left wing nut Allen Marko was out campaigning for that liberal flake Ned Lamont in the last US Senate election. What would anyone expect this know-nothing to say?

Anonymous said...

Right Dave it's not "necessarey (sic) to get the cost of insurance down". It's going to destroy private health insurance all together. To save money small to mid size businesses will end up dumping their employees in the government program until all that's left is the government program. But that's what left-wingers like Obama, Pelosi and most Congressional Democrats (from the northeast and Californmia) want.

I like Alford's response. She sounds like her head is in the right place.

Anonymous said...

Minor says: "Those leeches will ALWAYS demand their quart of blood from the sick and dying".

I say: It's time for Minor to get that mental therapy the town of Cromwell pays for (that is if he hasn't been fired yet).

Anonymous said...

Does Art have anything to say or is this another topic he will like to avoid. Like all the other topics that are to much for him.

Anonymous said...

It seems almost inevitable when examining the voting history of the people in this region that some day single payer, socialized medicine will come to fruition.

The problem with Obama-care (as was stated before) is that government will eventually put the private firms out of business. Because of government's inability and unwillingness to control costs, taxes will rise, care will deteriorate and this country will completely lose any competitive advantage we have in attracting jobs. It's a slippery slope Obama and the liberal Democrats are leading us towards.

Anonymous said...

I can care less what local politicians say about health care reform. Not one of them has any experience in the subject of health care. Stick to pot holes and complaints about how to lower the mill rate!

Odin said...

David Mills: “This is too big a topic and too expensive to have it forced through the process because some people want another government program."

No, Dave, "some people" don't want another government program - they want health care. As a retired teacher you've got health insurance, so it seems rather mean spirited of you to deny it to others. Of course, we could give it to them the way the rest of the civilized world does it (socialized medicine), but you conservatives would scream it was "Communism!"

Anonymous said...

This headline and story is pro-nation health care and it is deceiving. Lieberman is hardly the only Senate Democrat to be against the "public option". Additionally, The House of Representatives narrowly passed Speaker Pelosi's national healthcare bill. The vote was 220 to 215 with 39 Democrats voting against and all Republicans but one voting against it. So many Democrats are against this bill among (I would imagine) many prominent and respected Bristol Democrats.

Anonymous said...

7:13

Right on!!!

Steve Collins said...

10:32 -- Lieberman is our senator. So we focus on him.
And anyone who can read that story and call it pro-national health care is ideologically blinded.

Anonymous said...

RUSSIA HERE WE COME!

Odin said...

Did conservatives rip into our white President from Texas when he created Medicare? Lieberman no racist, but I think all his brand new best friends are just a bunch of Obama-haters who can't get over the fact that most Americans support him, and we want decent health care for everyone.

Anonymous said...

FYI 7:29 Cockayne has a little more knowledge on this subject than you think, considering his business is health insurance.

Odin - you are truly the most liberal person on this forum. Well maybe not now that Marko's points are on here too.

Anonymous said...

Odin:

You think Bush created Medicare? If is LBJ, yes most conservatives have been "ripping" him for decades.

Anonymous said...

6:35

And Cockayne is the most likely to be affected from a business point of view.

By the way, did Ward ever respond?

Anonymous said...

Collins:

You are the one who is "idealistically blinded" (is that the new liberal buzz-word?) if you can't see your bias.

Again many Bristol Democrats (the ones who aren't far left of center like Marko Minor) are opposed to Pelosi/Obama/Moveon.org-care and Lieberman is hardly going at it alone.

go west, just go said...

10:19 - why, are you looking for direction? someone should tell you where to go.

Anonymous said...

8:33
No, but I would like to know where my representatives stand.

But I gather that since the election is over, Ward will go back into hiding.

Anonymous said...

That`s what he does BEST!

Anonymous said...

1:51

As do the republicans.


where are their candidates now?