Barrow won't back health bill

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Democratic U.S. Rep. John Barrow said Friday he would not support the federal health care reform legislation scheduled for a vote this weekend.

Congressman John Barrow  Savannah Morning News photo
Savannah Morning News photo
Congressman John Barrow

Barrow, whose 12th District represents a portion of the Augusta area, issued a statement saying he wants reform but has too many problems with the bill supported by the White House and Democratic leadership.

"I am strongly in favor of reforming the health care system, but I don't think this bill is going to do it, and therefore I can't support it," he said. "It puts too much of the burden of paying for it on working folks who are already being overcharged, and that's not fair. It threatens to overwhelm Medicaid in Georgia, and that's not right. And it barely touches the insurance companies, and that's not smart. We can do better, and I'm ready to start."

Barrow's statement follows a letter Gov. Sonny Perdue sent to him and Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Ga., earlier this week.

The Republican governor warned that the health care bill could hinder the state's ability to rebound economically and force tax increases or cuts to services.

"Economic recovery will only come when Congress lifts burdens off our businesses and frees our economy to grow," Perdue wrote.

Also on Friday, President Obama made his case in a speech in front of thousands at the Patriot Center in Virginia, arguing that presidents before him have called for improvements to the current system.

"It's a debate that's not only about the cost of health care, not just about what we're doing about folks who aren't getting a fair shake from their insurance companies," Obama said. "It's a debate about the character of our country -- about whether we can still meet the challenges of our time; whether we still have the guts and the courage to give every citizen, not just some, the chance to reach their dreams."

Barrow Statement on Health Care Legislation Before Congress

Washington, D.C. - Congressman John Barrow released the following statement today in advance of this weekend's planned vote on health care legislation:

"I am strongly in favor of reforming the health care system, but I don't think this bill is going to do it, and therefore I can't support it.  It puts too much of the burden of paying for it on working folks who are already being overcharged, and that's not fair.  It threatens to overwhelm Medicaid in Georgia, and that's not right.  And it barely touches the insurance companies, and that's not smart.  We can do better and I'm ready to start."

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Nat the Cat
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Nat the Cat 03/19/10 - 05:11 pm
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When a Federal Dictator [a

When a Federal Dictator [a ruler who governs in spite of the will of the people] attempts to circumvent, or more correctly to usurp our Constitution, then the States must rise up pursuant to the 10th. Amendment and take our Country back--one State at a time if necessary! And please allow me to add, that John Barrow, a DEMOCRAT from the Great State of Georgia has finally decided to stand up to the Marxist regime, and will vote "against" this blatantly illegal attempt by the Obamanation government to take over our Health Care.
I must say that I admire John Barrow's courage to do the right thing!

Chillen
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Chillen 03/19/10 - 05:28 pm
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Well super! I hope he sticks

Well super! I hope he sticks to his word. If he doesn't he'll pay for it dearly upon re-election. Thanks to all who flooded his office with calls to sway him in the right direction.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 05:28 pm
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Nat, you are a very wise and

Nat, you are a very wise and well-spoken cat.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 05:37 pm
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President Obama is not a

President Obama is not a Marxist. Obama's health care reform bill is not socialism or a government takeover of health care. This health care legislation is not being "forced down the throats of Americans". If this bill passes Congress it will not be through the use of "un-Constitutional" measures. These are all right-wing lies. Rep. John Barrow cited none of the above as his reasons for voting against this bill.

J.W.
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J.W. 03/19/10 - 05:47 pm
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We'll see how long he holds

We'll see how long he holds out. Bet he caves!

TheFederalist
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TheFederalist 03/19/10 - 05:47 pm
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JRHC, wrong on all counts

JRHC, wrong on all counts sir, as usual. Thankfully, there are some statesmen, with back bones, left in the Democrat party. My hat is off to Mr. Barrow, for his wise decision. Thank you Mr. Barrow.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 05:49 pm
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What proof do you have that

What proof do you have that Obama is not a Marxist? If the majority of Americans say they do not want this bill, how do you say it is not being forced down our throats? As far as the means they are trying to use to get the bill passed being un-Constitutional, isn't that a matter of "opinion" and "interpretation"?

Insider Information
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Insider Information 03/19/10 - 06:04 pm
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WooHoo! Score one for the

WooHoo! Score one for the good guys. Finally, someone making sense. Everyone agrees reform is needed. But if you're going to do something, do it right the first time. Make it change we can believe in and not just change for the sake of change.

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
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ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 03/19/10 - 06:07 pm
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Good, now I can stop e

Good, now I can stop e mailing John Barrow with Recall Petitions every day!

Nat the Cat
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Nat the Cat 03/19/10 - 06:14 pm
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Mr. Cain, I highly respect

Mr. Cain, I highly respect your opinion, and I agree with you regarding the exhorbitant cost of waging War. I also remember your numbers concerning the comparison of not waging war and the cost associated with the President's Health Care Legislation. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think you stated that we are spending in excess of 700 billion a year to operate in Iraq and Afghanistan--compared to about a 100 billion a year for the cost of Obama's current Health Care Plan.
But have you taken into account that for the first 4 years, we will receive absolutely no benefits, at all, from this Health Care Plan even though we are paying for it? So we will have paid over 400 billion dollars before the "Plan" even goes into effect. And after 4 years, the cost of the Plan will go much higher than just the 100 billion a year. One cannot simply take the current projections of 1 trillion dollars over the next 10 years and just divide it by 10. Military costs will also rise if we continue to proceed, and actually escalate the War, as Obama is doing now in Afghanistan, and does not withdraw from Iraq as he promised.
Secondly, If roughly 75% of Americans do not want the Plan that is on the table, what would you call it since Obama is continuing to relentlessly pursue the passage of his plan if it is not "forced down the throats of Americans?"
Finally, if the Constitution of the United States says that the House and the Senate must vote on and pass Bills being sent to the President for his signature, why is that not being done with respect to this all-important, landmark legislation that will affect generations of Americans to come? Why all of the "deeming," "nuclear options," "reconciliations," State corruption, [Nebraska, Lousiana et al], and Coercive rides on Air Force One? I realize that he doesn't say that he is, but the President's actions are Marxist when one considers that the President, himself, said that this, the passage of this Bill, is just the FIRST STEP toward Government run Health-Care.

DAMY46
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DAMY46 03/19/10 - 06:25 pm
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Well, I'll be darned...I have

Well, I'll be darned...I have always been right wing and voted with the GOP...But, he has my earned my support. I going to send him some money when he runs for re-election...

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:25 pm
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If the bill is

If the bill is un-Constitutional, KSL, the courts up to and including the Supreme Court will decide that. I haven't heard yet that opponents plan to file court challenges. Congress has rules to passing legislation. Those rules are being followed. Obama is not dictating law. There has been a near 50-50 political divide in this country for some years now. Bush "won" by far less than Obama did, yet Cheney and Bush ran this country like they had a mandate. Americans are narrowly divided on health care reform. Nothing is being "forced down our throats". Bush forced an unnecessary, unjust war in Iraq (now even Republicans are beginning to admit this) down our throats. Millions around the world marched against the pending U.S. invasion of Iraq including here in United States. When Bush was begged not to invade Iraq he sneered "I get to decide that. You don't." Obama is now "The Decider". Even if he was forcing this health care bill down our throats, taking care of people's health care needs is a far cry from killing people which is what Bush did and what you supported. Saving lives verses taking lives isn't even a close call.

Nat the Cat
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Nat the Cat 03/19/10 - 06:33 pm
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Florida and South Carolina

Florida and South Carolina have already committed to sue if this Bill passes, and those States and others will test the Constitutionality of the Bill itself. But, Mr. Cain, you originally stated that the means of passing the bill were not Unconstitutional, not the bill itself. There is no doubt in my mind that the means of passage is Unconstitutional [please see my comment above], and I am even more confident that the Bill itself is unconstitutional because the government is penalizing citizens for NOT buying Health Care.
It is one thing to tax citizens and make them pay for Health Care, but the government cannot force her citizens to pay for NOT having health care and then receive absolutely nothing in return.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:33 pm
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Everything you say is

Everything you say is opinion, Cain. Opinion. If this health care bill was about taking care of the health of the people, it would be written differently. Yes, that is also an opinion. Mine. How can you not have heard about plans for court challenges, by the way?

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:35 pm
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Nat, I think Virginia has

Nat, I think Virginia has too.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:40 pm
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I don't believe the polls

I don't believe the polls that claim 75% of Americans oppose health care reform legislation. Besides the right wing spin machine has been in overdrive spreading fear and disinformation just like it did in the runup to the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

Nat the Cat, I wrote that the Pentagon's budget for this physical year is $708 billion. The actual upfront cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are around $159 billion. Obama will also also for another $33 billion (not accounted for in the budget) to pay for his surge of 30,000 additional American troops in Afghanistan. That makes a total war cost of about $192 billion this year. If we end all U.S. wars NOW, bring all U.S. troops home NOW, and cut the "Defense" budget of $708 billion in half that would be a savings of $354 billion this year and every succeeding year. I think we will eventually be forced to do this whether we like it or not just as Russia was forced to do after Soviet Union collapsed. IMO health care reform can and should wait until we have peace and a measure of economic recovery. Then we need to invest in education, basic health care (including forced exercise if necessary), and retool our economy so that is sustainable. If you figure the cost of the war in Iraq into the cost of gasoline we are already paying around $7 a barrel. We need to move towards a post fossil fuel, carbon capped, sustainable economy will haste.

Finally, Nat the Cat, you can't arbitrarily claim that this bill is so important that it demands an up or down vote. Republicans have used filibusters and other less than desirable legislative tactics. It is not illegal or un-Constitutional for the Democrats to do so as well.

TheDeerhunter
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TheDeerhunter 03/19/10 - 06:40 pm
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Well, he still wants a job

Well, he still wants a job next year. But who knows???...this could bite him in the butt.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:45 pm
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Forced exercise????

Forced exercise????

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:45 pm
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Everything you say is opinion

Everything you say is opinion too, KSL, Duh!, including the absurd claim that Obama is a Marxist. That is a conservation ending falsehood right there.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:49 pm
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I don't believe that when the

I don't believe that when the Repubs used these questionable measures for securing passage, it was on bills of this magnitude, Cain. My opinion. Just like what you have posted is your OPINION.

As for your not believing the polls, I don't trust the sources you often use to back up your opinions.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:50 pm
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I was being facetious with

I was being facetious with the "forced exercise". Change that to a pubic fitness campaign. I do favor taxes on junk food. It don't think that is unconstitutional. Preventive measures must be a part of health care reform especially in light of the obesity epidemic and the related diabetes epidemic.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:53 pm
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Hell yes the Republicans used

Hell yes the Republicans used the same legislative tactics time and again to pass legislation. Claiming that this bill is somehow so important that Democrats can't use the same reconciliation and associated tactics is balderdash.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:53 pm
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Cain, see my 6:33 post. I

Cain, see my 6:33 post. I clearly claim opinion. Duh back at you.

I believe Obama is a Marxist, or at the very least is under the thumbs of Marxists. My opinion, yes, and that of many people. Now, how about that proof that he isn't?

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:56 pm
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I've double posted twice

I've double posted twice today. Don't understand it.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 06:56 pm
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Look KSL, I noticed you

Look KSL, I noticed you posted a link to Newsbusters. That proves that you are just not very bright when it comes to your ability to discriminate reliable news sources for hack sites.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 06:59 pm
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There are people who are of

There are people who are of the opinion that the Republicans have not used the process in exactly the way it is being used now.

Nat the Cat
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Nat the Cat 03/19/10 - 07:01 pm
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Mr. Cain, I understand your

Mr. Cain, I understand your position, and I respect your opinion. I agree with you on many issues regarding war, both the financial and moral consequences. On Health Care, I suppose we will agree to disagree. Later, Nat.

KSL
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KSL 03/19/10 - 07:05 pm
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The newsbusters post, Cain,

The newsbusters post, Cain, was the quickest way to get to the particular link to the gun toting black man. I don't frequent that site, for your information. If you didn't check out what I was actually linking to in light of the post I was making, you are the one whose light isn't very bright. Notreally was insinuating that 99% of people who conservative are white. You obviously just noted the site and didn't go to it.

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 03/19/10 - 07:12 pm
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You can't prove a negative,

You can't prove a negative, KSL, or didn't they teach you that at the Ivy League school that you never grow tired of telling us about? Obama is a Marxist? Barack Obama is no Marxist, nor is he a socialist. I wish he had gone after Wall Street investment banks and reigned in insurance companies. The bailout of Wall Street and his caving on the public option leaving insurance companies in control PROVE as far as I'm concerned that Barack Obama is an Establishment politician beholden to the same institutional powers that Bush was beholden too.

Furthermore, I think the necessary security clearances required to rise to any high position in the U.S. govt, military, intelligence agencies, etc. guarantees that these a team players whose individual consciences have been compromised by the vetting process ensuring that our leaders and their advisers all suffer from Group Think. Look at who surrounded President Obama in the situation room when they assessed current U.S. policy in Afghanistan on March 12. Where are those experts who are willing to tell the President the truths that he may not want to hear?

USAToday "The Oval"

Mar 12, 2010

More than three months after announcing his strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, President Obama got an update this morning from his National Security Council.

Attendees in the White House Situation Room include Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Obama will talk via video conference with top aides in the region, including top military commander Stanley McChrystal and Ambassador Richard Holbrooke.

Here's a full roster, per the White House:

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates

Ambassador Susan Rice, permanent U.S. representative to the United Nations

Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg

Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (via video conference)

Karl Eikenberry, U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan

Anne Patterson, U.S. ambassador to Pakistan (via video conference)

Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Gen. James E. Cartwright, USMC, vice chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff

Gen. David Petraeus, U.S. Central Command

Gen. Stanley McChrystal, U.S. commander in Afghanistan (via video conference)

Adm. Dennis Blair, director of national intelligence

CIA Director Leon Panetta

Gen. James Jones, national security adviser

Tom Donilon, deputy national security adviser

John Brennan, assistant to the president for counterterrorism and homeland security

Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute, special assistant to the president for Afghanistan and Pakistan

noils
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noils 03/19/10 - 07:04 pm
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Not a single wingnut who is

Not a single wingnut who is cheering Barrow's decision now will vote for him in November. There will be plenty of Democrats who will stay home unless the Green Party fields a candidate. The Dems won't be losing a seat when Barrow loses, the Republicans already own it.

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