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tv   Capital News Today  CSPAN  July 31, 2009 11:00pm-2:00am EDT

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-- i want you to look at them. they were not issued at the same time. >> i want to ask for a provision. i want to divide the caps for 00 to consider it separately. >-- 4002 and considered separately. >> all those in favor of caps 4002 will say aye. the aye's have updated the second amendment, you spoke in favor of it. he spoke in favor of it. is there further debate on that amendment? >> on this amendment, this is
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the amendment for direct negotiations for drug prices under medicare? >> it is not. to not be disappointed. it is coming. . . d? >> it is not. don't be disappointed because it's come zblg which one do-- >> we had a waiver, mr. blunt from the federal government that was negotiating by our republican governor. and what that waiver did, was and what that waiver did, was set a the obligation over a five-year period, we were a state that took the burden of risk, that in the event, our medicare eligible population increased, the cost of that would be bourn by the vermont t taxpayer. the reason that we did that, it
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was a democratic legislature and a republican governor, is that we got some flexibility on our medicare program. >> on medicaid. >> on page 4, line 7, does this talk about medicaid or medicare? page 4, line 7. >> is that yours? >> maybe you don't have the same amendment that we have. >> i do. >> page 4, line 7, section 1186. >> we have in vermont, a price -- we have -- >> what i'm looking at, mr. welch, negotiating of lower covered part d drug prices on the part of medicare beneficiaries. is that in your amendment?
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>> yes, it is. >> does that do what the title says? >> that actually might inaccurately state medicaid than medicare. >> counsel, does that section directly amend on medicare part d? >> turn on your mike. >> it amends part d of the medicare program. >> the answer is, yes. the description of the amendment and the amendment don't seem to me to be the same thing. i oppose the amendment. or do you want to withdraw the amendment and come back with an amendment that meets your
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amendment? >> while you're referring to counsel, he was asked this question specifically the other day by the majority, direct negotiation on medicare part d save money and he said no, it would not save money. there are many people in the medicare part d program that already eligible to get veterans drugs that aren't negotiated. but they can't get the drugs that their doctor says they need. approaching somewhere in the neighborhood of 40%, people who have access to that negotiated program have chosen instead to get the drugs they want by finding a company that offers them in medicare part d and i'll
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oppose that amendment. >> will the gentleman yield? down here. >> let me yield to mr. welch. >> let's see if we have the amendment we want. i believe this is the wrong amendment distributed. >> okay, without objection the amendment will be withdrawn, without prejudice to the gentleman offering the other amendment. >> the wrong one has been distributed. >> i'll be glad to oppose the wrong one when it's distributed at the right one. >> and i'll be glad to give you the opportunity. >> the amendment being distributed is the amendment that you intended to offer. >> apparently not, mr. chairman. >> let's withdraw it. are you ready to have the correct amendment distributed and debated at this time? or do you want did zblsh i want to consult to see what happened here. >> let's move on to another amendment and then we'll come back. >> mr. buyer you have an
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amendment. >> at the desk, buyer 2. title of programs of health promotion or disease prevention. >> mr. pallone do you reserve a point of order? >> mr. chairman, i would reserve a point of order. >> the clerk have the amendment? be sure we have the right amendment and distribute the right amendment. >> the clerk will report the amendment. >> amendment offed by mr. buyer of indiana. division a, add following
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section 138, programs of health promotion or disease prevention. >> without objection the amendment will be considered as read. and the gentleman from indiana, mr. buyer? >> in regard to this markup, bending the cost curve, i'll add another theme to this, he'll thy people cost less. healthy people cost less. employee-sponsored wellness programs have been successful in decreasing cost. president obama has expressed his support for these programs in any health reform package. with greater flexibility, employees will be able to draw more people into their programs and improve the the health of m americans and decrees health care costs. employers today are providing
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the most innovative tools of improving the health of our population and decreasing health costs. regarding the bending of the cost curve, these employers showed providing employees with incentives to i improve their health, they're able to improve the health of their employees and save money. this is an idea that we should be embracing. it follows common sense that if you provide individuals with financial incentives they're more likely to work to improve their health care. it's one of the reasons that years ago we created the health savings accounts. trying to bring more personal responsibility back into the equation. the amendment expands upon the success of employer-sponsored wellness programs and provides greater employee participation programs. it aloes discounts of up to 50% of the toe that's cost of an employee's health care coverage,
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instead of 20% allowed under current hipa regulations. the amendment with quantify existing wellness program regulations and expand existing regulations to allow the programs to grow. the amendment does not change current law regarding hipa regulations. they will stand in place to protect individuals' health information. additionally a wealth of other federal and state laws that wellness programs remain in place. ill like to read a quote from president obama he stated in a statement before the american medical association on june 15th, 2009. the president stated building a health care system that promotes prevention rather than just managing diseases will require all of us to do our part. and safeway, which is rewarding workers for taking better care of their health while reducing health care cost miss the process. if you're one of the 3/4 of
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safeway workers enrolled in the program, you can get screened for problems like high blood pressure. >> the committee is not in order. i cannot hear the gentleman. >> gentleman is correct. committee will please come to order. >> it's a program that has helped safeway cut health care costs by over 13%. we are open to doing more to help employers adopt and expand programs like this. this is president obama's comment. with regards to the theme i'll reiterate on helping or -- strike the word helping. healthy people cost less. if 75% of health care costs come from four major conditions, cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity, if we can have an impact upon human behavior, we can prevent some of these conditions. that's, in fact, what this amendment is all about.
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with that i will yield back my time. who seeks recognition? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i rise in opposition to the boyer amendment. to start i would like to ask unanimous consent that we include in the record and pass out a letter from 60 organizations that oppose the amendment. mr. chairman, i think we all -- >> mr. chairman, i want to reserve the right to object. we have not seen the letter. i would like to see it before we just give unanimous consent. >> all right. then i'll go ahead as they pass it down. >> no unanimous consent has been agreed to. the gentle lady asked it o be put in the record. was that question? >> yes, and passed out. >> let's have it passed out.
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>> colleagues, i know we agree in employers playing a better role. well designed initiatives improve health outcomes, increase productivity and lower health care costs overall. these are covered by hipa. the health insurance affordability and accountability act prohibits them from treating them differently. this makes an accommodation for employer-sponsored wellness initiatives. but the wellness initiative must be structured in a nondiscriminatory way. the eeoc has expressed concern over wellness concerns that are punitive. such as those that require employees to complete a
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mandatory health risk assessment of programs that require or use monetary penalties, use mandatory million exams and test i ing, employee inquiries. the boyer amendment unfortunately takes this task. if he could withdraw it we could work on a better structured amendment. appropriate wellness amendments improve access to preventive service and encourage healthy lifestyles through positive incentives. that encourage individuals to be actively engaged in their health care that pursue recommended screenings and maintain an improved -- the employees' health through physical activity, good diet, good nutrition. unfortunately, the provisions in the boyer amendment give
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employers authority to raise premiums based on health status. in the current form it promotes the discriminatory programs that could compromise an employee's right to privacy in the workplace. >> would the gentle lady yield? >> i'm almost done. >> i'm afraid this amendment would undermine our overriding goal of health reform which is to provide access to affordable health care in a nondiscriminatory way. we are joined by the american association of people with disabilities, the american cancer society, the american heart association, the american stroke association, the american lung association, the epilepsy foundation, and since he came in second in the tour de france, i'll mention the lance armstrong foundation. the administration also opposes
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this amendment. >> >> i just wanted to say that we spend a lot of time on our subcommittee -- a lot of time in our subcommittee meetings on this issue. this is something that is very difficult to figure out the balance for so we do not start discrimination again on the one hand and have programs for wellness. it was suggested that this should be lifted the regulatory process. it would be very difficult to come up with language that would strike the proper balance. the way the amendment is structured, it would continue with some of these discriminatory practices. therefore, i would oppose it at this time. >> we have a request on the other side of the aisle. >> yes, i would like to ask my colleague whether you'd be willing to withdraw and we could work on an amendment that avoids
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the discriminatory tax but keeps the general idea in place. we all agree that the on site wellness and prevention programs are vital to keeping people healthy. i yield to the gentleman did >> think you -- i yield to the gentleman. >> thank you. the gentlewoman for yielding to me. you made a comment in your statement, ma'am, that this amendment would allow employers to raise premiums. that's false. there's nothing that would affect existing laws. all we're doing is an amendment that was adopted in the senate is very similar. and they go to 30%. i go to 50%. obviously we're going to talk
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about this at conference. i would prefer to remain with this. i'm doing what the senate is tals doing. >> i thank him. i respectfully disagree and would ask unanimous consent again that the letter with the 60 organizations in opposition be included in the record. >> without objection? now we've done five minutes on each side. i want to recognize mr. boyer, do you want to control the time for another five minute round? >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> the gentle lady from florida, i respectfully disagree how is it punitive or discriminatory when you're not raising the premiums for those who don't choose to participate in a wellness program? what his amendment says we we
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ought to encourage this kind of activity, not discourage it. companies like safe way and others that have shown tremendous savings berewa -- by rewarding. that's what this should be all about. you would think other people are being discriminated. what's discriminatory about them paying the standard rate, the standard group rate for the health insurance policy but rewarding others who lower the cost? >> i reclaim my time. yield one minute. >> i want to thank my colleague. this is exactly the reason we fear the public option, which we believe is the gateway drug is going to drive care to the lowest denominator. wellness is bad. let's penalize it. let's drive it down to the
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lowest denominator so we don't make wellness a part of the program. this is exactly why we're going the wrong direction. >> the language of opposition in here, frankly, i think the groups are just wrong. the gentle lady from florida says that charging individuals different premiums is wrong. everybody has to pay the same. everything is going to be equal. we need to look at healthy models. we talk about it in this committee. when we want to incent healthy behavior, we can't. everybody has to be treated the same. we rrnt punishing those morbidly obese and refuse to change their behavior. smoke too much and drink too much. we're going to force those healthy to subsidize those. that's just a bad policy.
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>> thank you. this is a voluntary program. we should be promoting the personal responsibility of wellness. healthy people cost less. safe way saved $52 million between 2005 and 2009. it was based e ed on 22,500 employees. we can createer better incentives. it's something we should be doing. we have this in the automobile sector. if we give to our children you
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get a discount. we incentivize. >> if a person has a good driving record, no accidents, no tickets, their rates for their auto insurance would be less than a person with multiple duis. multiple collisions, multiple speeding tickets? >> that's correct. yet, we are not permitted to do this in the ball with regard to someone who may voluntarily smoke or not take care of themselves versus those who would voluntarily do all they can to keep up their health, see a doctor regularly and not smoke. >> reclaim my time. the protections under current law are not affected by this amendment. the hippa regulations remain in
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place. genetic information nondiscrimination act remains in place. state laws remain in place. so i'm trying to encourage wellness programs. i yield back to dr. murphy. >> i'm just imagining a conversation between two people. one person who jogs and exercises, sees a doctor, eats right, and all the things that this committee has death with before with regard to food safety, with regard to encouraging people to not smoke. sitting next to someone who does smoke who doesn't take care of themselves and the person realizing that the other person's taxes pay for them. that would be an interesting conversation. >> gentleman's time has expired.
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you wish to be recognized. we're entitled to five minutes. if you can take less. lit be appreciated. >> i will move quickly. just begin by saying that autoinsurance is not the same as health insurance. a driver can choose not to speed. a person can't change her dna, heredity. it's easy to figure out who has had an accident or not and discourage that in the future with premiums. it's different in health care. completely different. so the gentle lady from florida has an amendment that's going to come up in a little while that deals with this issue in a way that doesn't act in such a coercive way to say to people that the price you have to pay in order to receive lower
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premiums is that you have to give away your privacy. here's a form that one company gives to people, employees, is this something you want people to have to answer? i am planning on becoming pregnant in the next six months. i am not currently pregnant. i'm not planning on becoming pregnant in the next six months. these are the kinds of questions that you have to answer in order to get a discount. huh? well, if you're in a wellness program. if you're working to improve your overall well being that should be the condition for receiving the benefit. as the price to enter a wellness
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program. and i think if we wet for the set of balanced amendments that the gentle lady from florida has. to present in these companies, a ten-person company that somehow or another all of the most intimate secrets of family and the medical history is not going to be compromised is to really hope for something that might exist in another world no. the world we live in. let's not allowed that to be conditioned. i would like to yield one more time to the gentle lady from florida so she can have another opportunity to expand upon how her proposal will differ, but still achieve the same. >> we all agree that prevent and wellness programs are very important cost savers for
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companies and also great for employees and their families. i would hope we would work together moving the forward to ensure that we're structuring it correctly in a nondiscriminatory way that provides all the benefits necessary. i'll yield back. >> i yield back to you, mr. chairman. >> all time is expired. we will exceed to the vote on the boyer amendment. let's go to a role call vote. >> mr. waxman. >> no. >> mr. waxman, no. >> mr. dingle. no. mr. boucher? mr. palone? mr. palone, no. mr. gordon?
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mr. rusch? miss eshue, no. mrs. supack, no. mr. engle. mr. green. mr. green, no. no. mrs. caps. mrs. caps, no. mr. doyle. mr. doyle, no. miss harmon. miss harmon, no. mr. gonzalez. mr. insley. mr. insley, no. miss baldwin. miss baldwin, no. mr. wayner, no.
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mr. mathison. mr. butterfield. mr. butterfield, no. mr. hill. mrs. christianson. mrs. christianson, no. mrs. caster. mrs. caster, no. mr. murphy of connecticut. mr. murphy, no. mr. mcnerny. mr. mcnerny, aye. mrs. sutton. mrs. sutton, no. mr. braley. mr. braley, aye. i'm sorry. no. mr. welch, no.
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mr. hall, aye. mr. upon tton, aye. mr. whitfield. mr. whitfield, aye. mr. shimkus, aye. mr. blunt. aye. mr. boyer, mr. baoyer, aye. mr. pitts, mr. pitts, aye. mr. walden, mr. walden, aye. mr. terry. mr. terry, aye.
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mr. rogers. mr. rogers, aye. mr. sullivan, @@@@@@@@@ @ @ @ @ >> mr. angle. mr. angle votes no. mr. rush. mr. risch wrote snow. mr. greene. i am sorry. ms. matsui, i am sorry. ms. matsui votes no. mr. bowsher. mr. bowsher votes know.
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matsui votes no. mr. boucher votes no. mrs. meyerick is aye. >> have all members responded? anyone wish to change his or her vote? if not the clerk will tally the vote. hold it. we have something else coming. i don't believe you are recorded. gentlemen wish to vote? votes no. mr. hill votes no.
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mr. space. mr. mathison. mr. mathison, no. mr. gordon, no. >> anyone else? clerk. >> no. mr. ross. mr. ross, no. miss baldwin is recorded as voting no. >> clerk will tally the vote.
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mr. rusch? mr. rusch is recorded as no. have all members responded to the role? clerk will report the vote. >> on that vote, mr. chairman, there were 24 ayes and4 noes. >> the amendment is not agreed to. who do we go to now? mr. welch. >> do you have your amendment? >> i do. >> could the clerk report the amendment and pass out the amendment as well.
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>> an amendment to the amendment offered. by mr. welch of vermont. in -- >> without objection the amendment will considered as read. the clerk and gentleman from vermont is recognized for five minutes. have we had it distributed? >> it is being distributed. we have now distributed the correct amendment. as i was explaining earlier, this addresses medicaid waiver that the state of vermont negotiated with the federal government where the state took on the burden of risk of increasing medicare experiences through enrollment. they showed significant flexibility. what this amendment would do is say that in the event that the
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health care legislation and the underlying bill is passed into law vermont would not be penalized by the current eligibility standards, and instead would get to be treated like any other state with respect to who is eligible for medicaid and how the federal government would participate in that financial implication financially of that. this is being presented at the request of our governor in legislature. governor douglas, who was the governor at the time this medicaid waiver was negotiated with the bush administration. the bottom line here is it would allow vermont to be treated the same as any other state in the event that the underlying legislation is passed into law. there plr chairman. i yield back.
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>> can i have some time? >> mr. blunt is recognized. >> a couple of questions of council. it's my sunsing that the underlying bill would prohibit this kind of agreement being made in the future. is that correct? i don't see any other reason for the amendment if that's not correct. >> the underlying bill has a maintenance of eligibility requirement that applies to all states. >> yes. for their medicaid population and their child health insurance populations. mr. welsh's state has a unique characteristic but otherwise applies the same eligibility requirement to vermont as it does to the other states what
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makes the feature necessary is a feature of the vermont waiver. >> but no other state would be able enter into a waiver similar to vermont's after this passes? >> this amendment and the underlying bill do nothing to change the existing authority that the secretary has to grant waivers to states under section 11-15. >> then why is it necessary? >> the maintenance of eligibility requirement in the bill would extend current state eligibility rules. including those in vermont. there's a specific class of individuals in the vermont waiver to which the extension makes no sense. this allows the secretary in the state of vermont to address that specific situation. >> if you said in case of a state waiver under section 1115
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and left out the words in effect on june 16th, 2009, that permits them to be eligible, any state could do this? without the effective date? why are we doing this? >> the effective date is the base for the maintenance of eligibility. the maintenance of eligibility requirement is tied to eligibility standards, methods and procedures. in effect on june 16th, 2009. >> that's six weeks ago. >> that's in the base bill. yes, sir. >> that's in the base bill? >> yes, sir. >> that would become the base for everybody except for vermont. because they have a waiver.
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the rules vermont had in effect on june 16th, 2009, were under its waiver. >> but no other state in the future could get the same waiver that vermont has? >> any other state that had a waiver that permits individuals to be eligible solely to receive a premium for individual or group health insurance. >> i think there diehl has unanimous consent request. let's go to him. we're talking here. can you tell us how many 1115 waivers there are across the country? >> i don't have the answer to that on the top of my head. >> i've been told it's in the
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neighborhood of 650 waivers granted to states in various fashions. we were singling out only one 1115 waiver in the amendment to grant an exemption from the underlying bill. is that correct? >> when vermont in its waiver, which is unique because what we did mr. diehl, was take on as a state the risk of rising eligibility in medicaid without and gave up our right to federal higher reimbursement in exchange for flexibility, we use that to make more people in the state eligible for medicaid this will say that vermont can rewrite with the federal government that portion of its commitment to eligibility for people above who will be covered under this bill.
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so ooel be held financially harmless. >> i understand, the gentleman. as i read your amendment it says you can continue as a state of vermont to allow premium assistance for individuals who are medicaid eligible and allow assistance for them to buy into their employer plan. >> that's correct. >> yesterday i offered an amendment that would have extended that opportunity to every state in the country. how did you vote on my amendment yesterday? >> i can't remember. but i wouldn't be surprised if i voted against it. >> so you're asking us to extend to vermont what you were not able to extend yesterday? >> will the gentleman yield to me. >> yes. >> we have the ability to do what, i believe this to be the case. your amendment would have mandated it. why then are we having to eamd
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and give one state an exclusion from section 1703 of the underlying bill, which puts prohibitions on future 1115 waivers except for in this case. >> i would yield to the gentleman. >> i don't think you are, mr. diehl. this deals with a practical problem. vermont took on the financial burden of providing benefits to folks on its own tab. that was a financial burden it took on because it felt that we would be able to accrue savings and then return those to citizens in the form of benefit
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benefits. >> vermont wants the same treatment as every other state. this legislation is intended to do very simply is allow the state and federal government to rewrite a waiver. na waiver has stringent obligations. we want to rewrite that to conform vermont and the eligibility section for every other state. it's a fix for a problem that vermont uniquely has. that is correct. it doesn't change any of the rules for any other state. it doesn't confer on vermont. >> reclaiming the time. the underlying portion of the bill you want to change, that provision states as a condition of the state plan under this title and as a condition for receiving any federal financial assistance, a state shall not
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have an effect of eligibility standards or procedures, including waivers urnds section 1115 that are more restrictive than the standards reflected under the base plan. other states would not have the ability to restrict our plans. we're excludeing vermont. given the authority to do that. >> is that correct? >> i believe it's not correct. >> i was asking council. >> i'm sorry. >> for the class of individuals covered under the labor that are eligible solely to receive a premium the answer to your question is yes. >> let's proceed to
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>> i have an amendment at the desk. it is cr 44001. it deals with the physician- owned hospitals. >> without objection, the amendments shall be considered as read. >> let me thank the chairman, who is a gentleman. i intended to discuss this and, in all probability, withdraw it. i feel very strongly about this. section 156 of the bill, beginning on page 18 and goes to page 44, it basically all lost a physician-owned or specialty hospitals. this amendment would strike that section in its entirety.
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most hospitals or clinics that were established in the united states, until about 100 years ago or maybe 50 years ago, were owned by physicians. 100 years ago or maybe 50 years ago were owned by physicians. it is the heart of the american practice of medicine. the most famous hospitals in america. either started out or still are physician-owned. like the mayo clinic, john hopkins in baltimore. in my state, md anderson. not every state allows physicians to have an interest, an equity/ownership interest in hospitals. in those states that do they have the highest quality rating, patient satisfaction ratings.
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i am blessed in my congressional district to have a number of physician-owned hospitals. i have been treated in the hospitals. i have gone to the emergency rooms in the hospitals. my mother has been in one of these. without exception. the experience has been as good as it can be given the situation that resulted in it. the pending bill for some reason is punitive. on these types of facilities. would at a minimum prevent their expansion. in all probability cause a number of them to close. if you read the language that my amendment strikes it is punitive and nature and very restrictive. some limited exceptions where you can appeal to the secretary of hhs.
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if we're going to have a robust health care system you have to give the providers and practitioners of the health care some opportunity where it is allowed by state law to participate in owning and having an equity in the facilities in which they perform their health care services. my amendment does nothing but obtain the status quo. if it's adopted we will go back to where we are today, where each state makes a decision whether to allow this type of owner ship interest. if they do, under what terms and conditions it's allowed. they have more satisfied patient rates. they are an example of how
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health care should be run. we can look at perverse incentives. to ban them outright is just wrong. i support the amendment. >> i'm going to yield to mr. boyer, mr. terry, and mr. burgess. i want to thank the gentleman. i hope you don't withdraw it. competition occurs if we're going to wipe out specialty hospitals, hospitals around the country will enjoy monopoly status. it will begin a stagnation as to quality. that's not good. i yield. there is a partially physician-owned hospital being dealt in an underserved area --
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about 60,000, 70,000 people who live in the area. it is 80% filth. they will not be eligible to take medicare or medicaid because they did not receive their medicare authorization as of the date. i support and want this amendment to pass. yield back. >> i encourage the gentleman to not withdraw his amendment. this is an extremely important topic. the retroactive nature of the language in the base bill is unnecessarily punitive. i can not imagine how in america we can restrict unlawful business just based from the standpoint of someone's professional degree. there's nothing like the pride of owner ship. when you own something you want it to be the best.
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i thank you, gentleman. >> my time is expired. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i reluctantly oppose it for the following reasons. we have two almost extremes. those who don't recognize the abuses and short comings of doctor-owned hospitals, which do exist. and those others who would simply say let's allow business as usual. i will tell you that i attended a meeting hosted by mr. wrangle. i wasn't very happy with the at tult of physician-owned hospitals. this is what they said. they don't take medicare patients. there's no emergency room rooms.
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>> that is not true. >> and it costs more. >> that is not true. >> i'm going to agree with you here. but i want to give you a true picture of what a physician-owned hospital can do and do it well. discouraging the really good actors unfortunately this amendment will allow for the bad actors. somewhere in the middle lies the answer. everything that cms represented to me was entirely inapplicable to one of the best hospitals in san antonio, which is physician-owned. it has 24/7 board certifiy eiei staff. 51% of the patients treetd etre covered by medicare. it's in the top 10% of all u.s.
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heart programs as determined by health rate. it exceeded the 90 percentile on overall patient satisfaction. it outperforms larger competitors on many of the key processes. and charges actually less than the general hospital. the problem with the provision as we presently find it is it doesn't reck mognize the efficiencies of hospitals that are physician-owned. we can close our eyes to some of the abuses and shortcomings as i earlier stated. why aren't we working with some sort of measurement that will allow for physician-owned hospitals that perform within
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certain guidelines and do it well? to protect us from certain abuses that are out there in today's operations. >> will the gentleman yield? >> only if you agree with me. >> i do agree. >> i'm being facetious. >> i go gree with what you said. you talked about the good and bad actors. the underlying bill accomplishes that i was there several times at 2:00 in the morning listening to the texas guys talk about this. the underlying bill accomplishes the goal. it says hospitals with medicare provider agreements in effect on january first this year where it
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doesn't require restructuring for currently operating hospital. >> i have to reclaim my time. yes, we have provisions. it really stops any future endeavors that may mimic the outstand i outstanding it's going to stop it in its tracks. which i disagree with. i think there's away to addressing, as i've said, the inherent problems that we have tout there without doing away the notion of physician-owned hospitals. >> i want to point out the way this is structured in the underlying bill, it does allow
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for those that exist now to continue. i want to make the point clear. a lot of time was spent in trying to deal with this in a way that is fair for those that currently exist. >> we're fixed where we are today i will still oppose this amendment. it doesn't make the distinction. i yield back to the chairman. >> gentleman yields back his time. mr. barton. >> this is one of the ones i'm going to use ten minutes on. it's really, really important. when he started his comments i interrupted and i apologize.
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i strongly disagreed. but he was saying that as a predicate to say what he said about the hospital in his district, which is one of the outstanding physician-owned hospitals. there are many states for whatever reasons that don't want to allow them at all we're not trying to allow a physician-owned hospital where the state doesn't allow it. but where the states do allow it webl in the overwhelming majority these hospitals rank at the top in every category. in terms of quality, performance, cost, outcomes, you name it. however you evaluate a hospital.
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these hospitals are at the top. there may be a few problem physician-owned hospitals. those are the exception. not the rule. this bans exception. it has a limited exception for somewhere between five and ten hospitals. which is very arbitrary. when mr. gonzalez says he wants to fix the problem. i don't hear him say he wants to ban them. i am more than willing to work with mr. gonzalez and anybody on the committee if they are truly problem if we need to put special parameters, let's do it. let's don't outlaw one of the mechanisms for innovation and
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quality that exists. i feel very, very strongly. this is the only amendment we've had in four days that i've felt strongly enough to speak twice of. this is if not the future of health care in america, it's a pathway to better health care in america. the pending bill stops it in its tracks. >> thank you for yielding. i think this is a very important conversation. when you talk about m.d. anderson, i think we're all aware of individuals that have sought that very special place
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out, that it has been life- saving, and that there were others that have the same quality. >> and the anderson is not state-owned anymore, but it started out the way. >> as i understand this issue and what is troubling to me about physician-owned facilities, mr. barton, is that it really is an exchange of taking money and of one pocket and putting it in the other in the same pair pants. there is the tendency or the motivation for the physician to oversubscribe, to over utilize, its center, it's a trend i do not know what you have built into what you're suggesting that would address that. we have to watch costs. we have to cut costs.
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. address that. we have to watch costs. we have to cut costs. these practices are bending the curve in a negative way. curve in a negative way. that's my question. >> thank you for yielding to me. i reck reck needs the problem. if we didn't have physicians the large nonprofits will not move in the neighborhood. i have hospitals that have been there since the '60s. i was born in a catholic hospital thats no a physician-owned hospital in houston. now we're trying to find
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somebody to take it over in central city, houston. so we need to look hat this. >> do i have the assurances that you'll work with tus to try to find a middle ground on this? >> if you yield to me, i'll be pleased to work with you and see if we can reach an accommodation? the other committee. we have joint jurisdictions with ways and means. i know that they were involved with putting this together. that's the caveat. we have to consult with them as well. >> chairman wrangle has agreed to meet with the him. i don't want to let something that is as good and as important as this. i have spoke within the leadership. they are more than willing to come to the table and whatever
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the real problems are to address them in a forthright fashion. i am withdrawing the amendment. >> gentleman withdraws his amendment. we're going to have votes on the house floor shortly. i also understand the staffs are going to try to go through the amendmts, prioritize them, bundle them together to move faster this afternoon. it's my hope can't give any guarantee. it's my hope we can conclude the markup by 4:00 or 5:00 at the latest nest the afternoon. whatever time it takes we're going to complete the bill today. >> mr. chairman -- >> if i can finish. >> ask members to come back.
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>> as i understand, there's one amendment, my amendment that you folks -- we could do that now. >> we'll put all the amendments we're going to accept together. >> i've already agreed privately with what you said, that we have a brief recess in which we try to have the staffs coordinate. i would like your assurances, which you've given me privately, that the key amendments, whatever the blue dog compromise is that it will be made available for two hours. >> that's a reasonable request. we will make the amendments that we're going to have available to you two hours before the vote. >> some priority amendments.
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>> there are a number of amendments. we're going to try to meet everybody's priorities. >> with that understanding, we're more than willing to work with you to expedite to the extent it's possible we understand how hard you worked on this. we would like to see it concluded today. we also want to make sure that all the issues that need to be addressed are addressed in a forthright fashion. >> i think that's a reasonable question. we'll work together to accomplish it. we'll stand in recess until after the last vote on the floor. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> coming up on c-span, senator
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chris dodd on his prostate cancer diagnosis. that is followed by conservative journalist michelle malkin on health care and the obama is an illustration. >> on tomorrow mornings "washington journal" they will talk about the "cash for clunkers" program. they will debate the state of race relations in america. it is like each morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> on c-span radio hear lbj phone calls, and billy grant.
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>> christopher dodd has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. all speaking with reporters, he talked about efforts to pass health care legislation. this event took place in hartford, conn. it is about 10 minutes. >> i'm going to be fine. we cut this early. it is very manageable and early stages. i will be out and doing all the things you have to do to represent my state and carry on the efforts of the engagement. i want to mention something i have talked a lot about. as a member of congress i have a very good health plan. my health care plan allows me to get paid for an annual physical. because i have an annual physical i was able to detect
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this prostate cancer very early. i was able to take some time because it is slow going to talk to people about what is the best course of action to follow. i have developed an encyclopedia of knowledge about prostate cancer. that is a reading books and talking to people. the best course of action recommended to me was to do surgery. shortly after we recess next day, i will have surgery done in new york. we will remove the prostate. then i'll take a day or so in the hospital. i will be back in connecticut at home for a couple of weeks after that for recuperation. i will be able to do work while i am home and to maintain a light schedule. the benefit of being in congress and having a good health care plan is not available for everyone. this is the fourth point i want to make. today 100 people in this state
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will lose their health care coverage. for a person loses health care coverage, the fiscal man of becoming. if you can afford a physical, you may not have the resources to cover to do with the cause. one of the things we of infighting for is to get this national health care reform as it passes from congress. it is controversial. if his heart. >> it is hard. . i made the decision last evening about the course of action and made the decision to be your this morning to tell people about it. why now? i just felt that we can talk and
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extractions about healthcare but in some ways what i'm going through many people do. it is important to remind people that an annual physical make such a difference. i strongly recommend men over a certain age to get this done. everyone should, but particularly in prostate cancer. i want to remind people -- i do not want to be an exhibit. i knew i had prostate cancer all during the month of june as those conducting the mark up. and nothing that should be the issue. it is not about me. it is about people without health care insurance. people up there are struggling every day. that is what this is about. with that, i thank you for coming out. i feel fine. i'm going to be fine. i caught this early. i look forward to getting back out on the trail and do my job on behalf of the people of connecticut. >> we want the opportunity -- i
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am ready to catch you up and get to back out there again. this is how many hours to complete impetyou can put in wi, think of how much can put in without cancer. >> i am running for reelection. [laughter] i will be a little leaner and meaner, but i will be running. [applause] i will be running without a prostate. >> [unintelligible] you have an awful lot on your plate. >> we are not in session. we will be out next friday. in a sense, it is convenient. it was a suggestion that we
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should do this sooner rather than later we are sticking to that schedule. i'm told by others, i talked to john kerry, i said to -- as the next to two senators blowgun do this. -- who have gone through this. there are a number people. i do not expect any real delivered elay. i will be home. a light schedule is recommended. by the end of the month, i may be more active. >> [unintelligible] >> you go right ahead, amy. seniority. seniority. >> [unintelligible]
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>> there are three or four different options. one is an active surveillance. no and recommended that. i talked to radiologists from the country about that. and rejected that form. the other two is a been a technology that you can use. it will be more radiation. -- it will beam radiation. it is a new technology. people are not as confident about it. the other options are radiation pellets or the surgery. i went back and forth. i listed all the various ideas about it. it came down to this kind of surgery made the most sense. they let me make that choice.
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doctors did you have to decide what to think is best for you. we decided that the surgery made the most sense. >> so no radiation or chemotherapy? >> no, just the surgery. what is that? [inaudible] >> if you talk to senator kennedy? >> i've talked to him every day. and lost a sister about three years ago to lung cancer. i did not want her to know about it. i did at the center can be about in recently. -- senator kennedy -- i did not tell center kennedy about it
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until recently. he was off on a sailboat. [laughter] >> [unintelligible] >> the date will be early august. we are in session this week. it is the second week. i just went back and forth. i am impressed with the doctors. they came hire the -- they came highly recommended. the general recommendation was that it was closed in nearby for any follow-ups. >> you have the opportunity to
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speak to one for radiologists -- to wonderful radiologists. there are friends around the country who are on colleges. -- oncologists. they all had great expertise. you probably cannot go wrong with any decision. >> [unintelligible] >> he is just going to have to listen to all my story is now. he will probably enjoy this time a great deal. >> i lost my parents and i was very young. my sister was diagnosed on may 22 and allied delight -- and died july 6.
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she had a small cell cancer. but brother thomas had some. my grandmother died very young. >> there is no indication of this will be life-threatening. >> the blood tests is the one. decanters hard to detect because of the location. even when they do the biopsy, and they can miss it. in my case, they picked it up in several of the boards and the technology confirmed it. >the psa --no matter what the
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level is if it is consistent, that cannot indicate anything. mine spiked. that is when they decided to get a biopsy. crux is as hard with your two little girls? >> they are four. >> will let them know before the surgery. [unintelligible] >> certainly by the end of august i will have a full schedule. based on what i have been told burd. it is surgery. they think a day or so in the hospital, maybe two. then you are back home.
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speaking to everyone that i have talked to, they tell me it has happened with them. there are very upset of it afterward depending on your age. some recover more quickly than others. the recovery rate is very high. it is in the 97% range. the numbers are about the same in a radiation and surgery. the success rate for very high. i am very confident that we will be in great shape. thank you.
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>> coming up on c-span, michelle on health care and the obama administration. then nancy pelosi and other house democratic leaders discuss the health care bill and their legislative agenda. later, a look at the "cash for clunkers" program with president obama. >> on c-span radio, lbj phone calls with the secretary of state, republican presidential nominee richard nixon, and evangelist billy graham. >> a conservative journalist talks about the obama administration opposes take on health care. this is about 25 minutes. malkin michele malkin who is out with her new book. guest: thanks for having me, steve.
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host: first you say the obama's team is a disfunctional and dangerous conglomerate a business as usual croneys, barak obama owns this cabinet of tacks cheats, crooks and croneys it is his and his alone. judge him by the company he keeps. >> yes. guest: i have to thank david brooks for inspiring this. the culture of corruption opens with a column he had written not long after the election day and just sort of foretelling this klick of achievea-trons and how phenomenal he was impressed that obama brought with him the best of the washington insiders and praised their ivy league pedigrees, and really this was sort of a repeat of, you know, this idea that somehow these smarty pants were going to come in and change washington.
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and well, it didn't take long before the obama administration disabused us of that notion in a very big way. and i go through all of the botched nominations and then a lot of the nominations that actually went through, barely by the skin of their teeth. obviously tim quite they are in comes to mind. everybody knows about him, but there are many others that i document and one of the most important and relevant chapters i haven't talked about yet and if you look at the front page of "the new york times" you can see how well known this is a lot of the officials tied to golden stool and citi whore now reaping enormous bailouts from tim quite they are in and henry paul son preeling proceeding him helped engineer. >> and you wrote host: few january terse in the country worked overtime after
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barak obama won the presidency. it wasn't easy cleaning the drool off the laptops and floors in the offices of the journalists covering the greatest -- exalted the financially troubled fish rap wrap of record sold the $2,000 worth of obama-themed misdemeanor and the times times has a vested financial interest in propping up the obama administration. >> and that also helped me gave fuel to me fuel to write this book. i did it a in a very concentrated time period and while i was digging up all these stories and documenting conflicts of interest and croneyism my colleagues and much of the rest of the main stream were slathering over the greatest transition in world history. but even there that was quite a miss because the speed at which the obama administration put people into place was no better
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than the regan administration. there was a lot of hype about unprecedented this and unprecedented that. and in the end what i concluded was that what was unprecedented were the amount of failures and lapses and business as usual that actually came back to office under guise of hope and change. host: this is one comment saying your president had a record-low approval and your side lost. get over it, get a alive and get a real job. >> well, change the subject. guest: change the subject. if anyone's real familiar with my work and writing about bush and the last several months of the administration, they would know how hard, probably harder on bush than obama, i was. especially when it came to being architects of these failed financial bailouts. and i think there's quite an
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irony that ought to be appreciated by this particular tweeter of obama who promised not to continue the old, tired failed policies of the bush administration and yet has many of the treasury officials who helped initiate those policies now in his own administration. host: do you tweet? guest: i certainly do you can find me at@michele malkin and before i came on i let everybody know that i would be here and i follow@c-span and@c-span wj. host: our phone numbers at the bottom of the screen. is our email. you mentioned some of the individuals in the administration that you take aim at first of all you call the c.i.a. director the perfect illustration of the beltway swamp creature and said when it comes to self-policing that
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puts taxpayers interests above the electoral special interests joe biden doesn't have a serious bone in his body, and you refer to the attorney general, eric holder as a crime-coddling corporate lawyer. >> i think the theme that runs about the culture is there's a massive gap between the obama rhetoric and the reality. i'm not arguing influence-peddlers and power brokers should be outlawed somehow. everybody has to make a living. but the point is team obama came here on as high a horse as we've ever seen to change the way they do business and yet they have people like leon i netta who par leied an entire career as a government serven't into massive private welterweight. you've got people who came from the hedge fund industries who were bundlers, these are all
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the prototypes that barak obama and michele obama condemned and yet they fully embraced them in their administration and don't seem to acknowledge the hypocrisy there. >> you moved from -- to colorado springs, how does that affect you in this town? >> i've always had a mental and i had logical detachment from the beltway. that's just part of my views as a conservative but it's easier to view it from the outside and have my ear to the ground in the grass roots in the mountain west. i feel very liberated out there. and the air is literally and figuratively fresher. host: molly is joining us very early from oakland, california. republican line for michele malkin good morning. caller: god bless you dear for
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putting up with the incredible abuse. i just bought your book. i haven't had a chance to read it but what drives me crazy is the double-teams -- i want to site obama saying every day you get to keep your private insurance. i'm in the private insurance and i read the bill and in the title of grabbed fathering private health care insurance it goes to explain how within one year of the legalizing of this bill private companies will not be able to sell new policies. people will not be able to go and get their own insurance within one year of this bill passing and becoming law. and yet the president gets up there and balled face lies and says -- and another a balanced-faced lie. these congress a balanced-faced
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lie and yet these people fell feel justified in puting this bill and this perfect plan none of them are even going to take this plan. host: your response? guest: yeah. a couple of things. it is galling the contempt and the derision with which members of congress in particular have responded to members of the public about this question of reading the bill. and the story of steny hoyer, the democrat leader essentially laughing when the question was posed to him, tell you all you need to know about washington's commitment to deliberative democracy and transparency for that matter. that matter. i know a lot of this president essentially committed that he -- use the specifically about a provision
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by the business daily. the individual market with its fleet destroyed. he admitted he had not even heard of the provision. i think this mirrors the outbreak. we saw it during the stimulus debate. these massive programs and getting pushed through and then the american people only discovered after it is passed and signed into law and that they are not getting what they are promised end of that every single one of these has turned out to be a flush fund for special interests. i think that is another reason why it is important to write the book. when these things are pushed through, we do have the power to say stop and ask and demand to know who benefits. i have a section in my chapter on gazars about the health care czar. this is someone if she had an
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'r"♪' by her name would have been ignored by the obama administration. there has been very bold disclosure of her activities in the white house. she is beyond congressional accountability. we know thanks to a left-leaning watchdog here in washington that they were meeting with these hospital executives. only under the threat of lawsuits to the wide use -- white house disclosed the information. administration officials were in those meetings. but gets what? nancy depaul has financial ties to some of those executives who were in the meetings. i'd like to know, the public should know was nancy deparo in those meetings and if she was,
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why didn't she recooz herself? host: good morning. caller: i have two questions, i couldn't wait. i mean, this is what makes politics and i don't even know why i listen i don't even know why in the middle -- c-span has the young lady here. you know, i'm wonder dering where miss malki where you were when bruce leiter spent all those billions and all day there's nothing that you didn't know about it, what about the -- what about all the g.o.p. in jail and scandals? where were you when other things happened? guest: well, you can just google my name. you can look at my blog and you'll see that i was one of the loudest voices criticizing croneyism and nepotism and you can find many blogs michael
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brown at fema, a lot of dhs nepotism, which i investigated and covered and uncovered myself. and also you know you can take a look at my files and see even most recently all of the work that i've done criticizing the porkacrats in alaska. don young and ted stevens. i think that my critics suffer from immoral equivalence cri when they can't take a look at the book where i was written and they say where were you without informing where i was. bush is not in office anymore. barak obama is and that's why i wrote the book. host: a couple photographs inside the book this was the former fwover of illinois and mayor of chicago and president obama. guest: yes. i think it was very important
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to set the stage for the atmosphere, the culture, the political machine that barak obama grew out of. and there is a section in the book specifically on the episode involving barak obama, valeri jarrett, his senior white house advisor and -- from chicago and the connections to the rod blagblag scandal. -- rod blagojevich scandal and i go into how the employees national union somehow roped into blagojevich's ploy to try to trade favors for that senate seat. host: you also write about michele obama. the cultured pearls and false eyelashes applied by herful-time make-up artist michele robinson obama is a hardba chicago politico and the first lady long ago was
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willing to 'em employ racism ackscations of racial o' presentation. >> guest: this seems to raise much amongst my critics. i'm very hard on her and i'm annoyed at the kit gloves she is being treated with and people are coward they don't want to look as racist or -- her father was a patronage combleeds and she herself floated with the daily administration to a codesy job at the university of chicago medical center. i have very interesting chart that a blogger compiled that i put on page 65 of the book that showed the skyrocketting of her salary at this cozy job at the university of chicago between the time that she was appointed and the time that barak obama
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won his senate seat. and the salary nearly tripled and they say that's just a mere coincidence well after barak obama won the white house, she left that job and they thought it was not important to fill again after she left. i also talk about i think an interesting episode that happened while she was serving at the university of chicago medical center because it has really advance to the health care debate now. she engineered what many consider a patient-dumping scheme that busts poor and minority patients out of the emergency room of chicago emergency rooms to others that would supposedly offer better care and the emergency physicians association condemned it as illegal patient turning and the person she hired to sell the plan was none
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other than david axelrod and susan sure who is now on her staff no in the east wing was also involved and the senior advisor who at the time of this incident was on the chicago university of chicago board of directors. host: i know you get a lot of teapings because you're the contributor for fox news. it says cough, cough, fox? generally your sense about the role fox plays in the dialogue in this town. guest: well, there are many parts of fox. people confuse that. we keep saying it until we're blue in the face and people don't appreciate yes in prime time you have hosts who have very strong opinions, shawn hannity, glen beck, bill o'reilly. but even among those three there are very diverse opinions on basics -- basic policy
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matters and on how hard or soft to treat barak obama. then of course there's a new side when i think is unfailingly fair and balanced. so again to level and add holmen in the fox that discredits a 400-page book? that's ridiculous. host: joining us from iowa independent line good morning. caller: yeah. i just found out who holds her paycheck and i wanted to know if this book, what is your answer to all these questions you have? what is the answer to the corruption in washington? you've got a book out but you don't have any ideas? >> well, guest: well, i think sun light is the best disenfieck tenant and disclosure will help breed disclosure, and i also think very simply that knowledge is power. i think that the american people have not been fully informed about just how much an
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illusion hope and change the era of hope and change has been, so i think the book is part of the solution. host: another quote from the book, this with regard to secretary of state hillary clinton and bill clinton. they have always had a knack for dragging the attracting the dregs of set to their donor rolls and even greater talent for avoiding the kind of sustained media scrutiny. guest: one, the double standard in the media and two the antithesis of hope and change. and i understand the political strategy that went on and trying to neutralize hillary clinton by giving her the secretary of state position. but the lack of transparency of both the clintons throughout their political lifetime should really give paws to the honest
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progressives who thought barak obama was going to do differently and i don't go -- it's not a reread the. the chapter i wrote about the clintons is not a retread of all the scandal. it goes through the massive amount of con flicks of interest between bill clinton and his charitable foundations, many still undisclosed donors. we know about some of them. foreign state governments. very shady businessmen. some cases convicted criminals. and the kind of work that hillary clinton does now. the administration tells us and hillary clinton told us after she went through the nomination that she would recooz herself when there were conflicts of interest. it's difficult to say when there wouldn't be. and basically their recoozal policy is just, trust us.
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host: welcome, good morning to the program. caller: foong, how are you michele? i read your blog all the time and i think it's great, especially head morris he's a great writinger. guest: thank you. caller: i'd like to know what happened to ratner? he seems to have left abruptly. did they find something wrong there? i do belief that your books could be an ongoing tragic because of all these changes in the administration all these crooks leaving it. host: we should point out again there's a photograph in the photographs weir looking at all from the book michele malkin has completed. guest: yes. steven ratner did just leave over the past week and i think that's proof to my thesis that if there's enough sun light you can have accountability. he was under a cloud the moment he was a pointed car czar by barak obama.
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because his company had been involved until a long standing s.e.c. investigating and a strange incident involving the production of a movie called "chooch" and a play for pay scheme in which ratner had dealings and promises with the directors' relative. involved with the movie. i did dedicate an entire chapter to the czars because i think this is one of the most troubling aspects of the administration. every republican and democrat administration has had czars. we had a drug czar, homeland security czar and but it's really the scope and breadth of czars barak obama has appointed. and by the blogosphere's count there may be up to 44 of them now who have been installed by presidential authority. they don't have any
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congressional oversight and in my m cases they are completely su per flouse. we have -- a lot of people don't even know we have the czar, why do we have a health and human services person and health czar. i think up with of the reasons is that the obama vetters got into so much trouble during the formal nomination process that they just threw up their hands or someone cleverly thought of circumventing this issue and creating a cabinet. host: the problem that o'reilly don't check facts and promote lies. guest: they are as cannibal as anybody else and know the rest of the main stream media fox bashers are going to be on them like white on rice and a lot of these bloggers dedicate their every bit of life to every
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sentence said on fox news are going to be those report are then regurgitated word for word by a lot of the main stream media so the idea that they are not held accountable for what they say on air is ridiculous. i have joked on my blog about fox derangment syndrome and also serves as a convenient disstrax of what's going on in this administration and how disappoint ad lot of these obama supporters are. host: the current white house chaffin rahm emanuel and from tony who said would you please comment on his chief of staff and dual citizenship i voted for obama but knew he would be no better. the very nature of power attracts those who should not have it. guest: the dual citizenship of o'manuel? it doesn't bother me. host: good morning. caller: good morning. good morning. good morning.
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c-span i think you need to do a little better job. i mean everybody has opinions and this young lady need to be on book tv not c-span. excuse me, hold up, let me make my comment. i but them vote on it. if you do not like somebody in office all these years in june of this crazy stuff, but the people vote on it. you are sitting there. everybody has opinions. put me on. host: you are on right now. did you have a question? caller: say again? host: thank you. guest: i am really glad -- the
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first time i appeared on c-span was 67 years ago. ago and i'm still referred to as young lady. i appreciate that. host: this is also another tweet that says bravo. big fan reading your books at town hall how did you approach this book and write it? >> it was really after the inauguration and not long after that i really just bore down, there's a lot of leverage between what i do and my syndicated column. aye been writing it twice weekly syndicated column for -- since 1992 and then i blog at michele i've been doing that since 2004. i have wonderful cleaggeds that blog at hot and that blog has been operating for a couple years as well.
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and the sinner ji between everything i do made it very easy to hammer out the book. a lot of people that's the first thing they note even though main stream reporters do this all the time. there were stain books on michelle obama and the obama administration in january. so i thought what was interesting is up until the very last second hit that went to press, i was updating it. every day in the headlines there's a relevant story that i think that points to the deficient as is. because i would see a story that sort of glossed over a lot of the conflict of interests and croney ties and i would say see, we need this book. it definitely has filled a vacuum. host: you were on the "today" show with pat lauer. >> i was shocked at all that they had me on, grateful for that opportunity opportunity and they graciously reprinted the entire introduction of the
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book on their website. but you know, you've got three or four minutes to try to get your point across and most of the questions had nothing to do with the book, which is fine, but i really think there was was really a game of trying to beat the clock and in the end i think matt lauer got beaten. it was a very entertaining experience. host: michelle malkin thank you for being with us on c-spapa fo a fu >> on washington journal, we will talk about the press reporter justin hyde about the cash for clunkers program. david mason will discuss a bill to put limits on executive pay. joe madison will debate the state of race relations in
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america. "washington journal" is live each morning 7:00 a.m. eastern. >> this week as expected, the senate judiciary committee voted to recommend the confirmation of sonia sotomayor as supreme court justice. watch the debate this saturday on c-span at 7:00 eastern for the next week, her confirmation as to the senate floor. live coverage of the full senate debate on c-span2 coming in october, tour the home to america's highest court, the supreme court. leading up to the august recess, nancy pelosi and other democratic leaders held a press conference to discuss the ongoing process of crafting the drafting health care legislation. this is a 35 minutes.
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>> good afternoon. 44 years ago, medicare was signed into law by president lyndon johnson. here we are this week about to be close to healthcare reform and we have ever been in history. will we have our third committee report -- on that note of the new legislation, we go home in august to promote health care reform and to inform the public of the considerable accomplishments of this congress, this new direction of congress. right from the start we pass an economic recovery package, the largest in history and in record
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time. 100 days later, we passed the president's budget. in between, he signed legislation for children, and nondiscrimination for women in the workplace, our colleagues will address many of these issues more specifically. we have the economic recovery act to begin with. they are helping americans save their homes. 100 days later -- the president called for us to call the economy around. that meant education, health care, and a new energy policy for america. we did just that. i congratulate the senate majority leader the we have passed all 12 of our appropriations bill.
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that is no small feat. if those not accomplish, it will be a large feet to do. in terms of quality health care, not only do we have our reform, we have to the state the, regulation of tobacco, and the list goes on. you know about the clean energy act. "class for clunkers." fiscal responsibility. protecting consumers, credit card holders, military procurement reform, strengthening the oversight of tarp. of course, the bear responsibility we had to protect the american people -- the great responsibility we had to protect the american people. now you see some of the recovery
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act provisions for public safety being distributed through the country. we are very proud. it is time to pause and reflect on this very productive congress. to do so as we go out to promote health care reform for all americans and have quality, affordability, and accessibility. that will be done in a fiscally sound way. it will save the american people money, make our businesses more competitive, and an infusion of energy into our economy while reducing the cost of our entitlement to the american people. we are very proud of the work that we have done. we look forward to the energy and comments -- commerce committee passed in that. we will prepare in august for how we go forward.
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my colleagues will spend more time on that subject. i want to commend all the leadership we have. our members have the stamina and courage and intellect and determination to get the job done for the american people, because it all comes down to them. mr. hoyer. >> thank you very much i know i speak for every member of the caucus thanking you for your leadership over the last seven months. the american people, the president of united states, and this congress, as he came into august -- came into recess where in the worst economy that we
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have seen. that was the legacy that we inherited. we have acted decisively to confront the legacy. we want to turn around the economy to make the economy better for our people. i believe that we are seeing real progress. we adopted a recovery act to reinvest in growing our economy. as members leave washington to go to their constituents, there are clear signs that our economy is beginning to recover from the recession we inherited from the bush administration. just today we saw that the prime in gdp is tapering off. our economy decline is at a rate of 6.4%. there is no wonder why we are hemorrhaging jobs and that our
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people were discouraged about their status. they are still facing stuff -- tough times. there is a decline of only 1%. one could say that is a 600% improvement. one could say it is a 5% improvement. it is an improvement. we see signs that 6.4%, which was a 50 year low, in the quarter just ended and is down to wonder. it shows that our economy is stabilizing. it also shows that the funds from the recovery act began to hit the economy over the last three months. that is working on the timetable we expected. most economists believe the full impact of the recovery act will be felt in the second half of the year. that is the third and fourth course.
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a 1% decline was the first quarter. the stock market -- many of you heard me talk about how the stock market under bill clinton went up to wonder 26%. what does that mean? that means that someone had $100,000 in a savings account that they built over 30 years in a retirement account, at the end of the clinton years, it is worth $226,000 plus whatever other earnings they had in that account. under george bush, that savings plan went down 26%. that is what those figures mean in real terms. the stock market has also shown real signs of a recovering economy. since president obama took office, the dow is up 15%.
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the s&p 500 is up 23%. the nasdaq is up 38%. all of those three indexes under the bush administration over eight years were down. in this recovery time, they have gone up. since president obama signs the recovery act, the dow has gained more than 1300 points. there are some who says -- to say it is not working. people who are buying stocks certainly think something is working. 1300 points since the adoption of the act. that is an increase of 17%. -- 17% in the housing market. we just saw the largest monthly gain in nine years. for the third straight month, new home construction is up.
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that is progress. that is success. it is not where we want to be. as long as there is a single foreclosure, as long as we are not getting roads made as quickly as possible, as long as people cannot sale homes and want to or buy them when they want to, we have not gotten where we want to be. we have made very substantial progress. on jobs it is also clear that we are seeing a reversal of the terrible damage done under republican leadership of i use this is a sick again. -- i will use the statistics again. we created 20.8 million new jobs in our time. that was 216,000 per month. why is that figure important? you need 100,000 to stay even. what happened there in the bush administration? they created an average per month, 96 months, 4000 each --
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4000 to one in 68 jobs. -- 400,068 jobs. you were wondering why the legacy of the administration was so dire. it will take longer for employment to recover. stopping the economy's slide is the necessary first step in turning around unemployment. a great deal of work remains to be done. we are not out of the woods yet but we are on the right path. all that shows that democrats were right. republicans did not to the value of family in the recovery and reinvestment act. it continues to fund job breeding project across america. it continues to keep public service on their job.
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it continues to spark economic demand. all of those facts show a democratic economic policy that works. . .
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>> which said that we are going to make a very concerted effort , after having had to borrow significant sums to get this economy back on its feet. we are going to make equal efforts to make sure that we return to the fiscal responsible days of the clinton administration, when we had surpluses of $5.6 trillion when the bush administration took over, and we had $11 trillion in deficits confronting us when we took over. so in terms of getting this economy back, reinstating fiscal responsibility, this congress has been an extraordinarily effective one, and in my view, the most effective seven months of any congress in which i have served. i thank the speaker for her leadership, and i new yield to my colleague who has counted the votes to get us to where we
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are, jim of south carolina. >> thank you very much, mr. leader, madam speaker and my colleagues. this is an historic congress, and we are facing some horrific challenges. the worst economy sips the great depression, massive job loss, and a health care system with rising costs that are bringing america's families, businesses and the economy to their knees. under the presidential leadership, we decided to tackle these great challenges with bold solutions, and job creation and economic stability are at the top of the list. there is nothing more fundamental to the fiscal holt of this nation than the fiscal health of every american. we laid the ground work for
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health reform by expanding the children's health insurance program, schip to 11 million children. we further protected the health of children by granting the food and drug administration authority to regulate the advertising, marketing and manufacturing of tobacco products, the number one cause of preventable death in america . with 1,000 children each day becoming new smokers. we built on that foundation with the american recovery and reinvestment act to bring our health care system into the 21st century, moderate eshizing the health care system to save lives by accelerating the implementation of tech nothing systems. creating a new prevention and wellness fund with $1 billion,
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investment in biomedical research and disease studies with $2 billion, expanding community health centers by $2 billion, increasing funding for training of health care professionals and laying medical school -- paying medical school expenses in return for practicing in underserved communities. and just this week, we passed landmark legislation to fundamentally change the way we protect the safety of our food supply, closing the gaps exposed by the recent strain of food-born illnesses, giving the food and drug administration new authorities and funding and tools. but most significantly, we took on a challenge that has evaded congress for 61 years. we moved forward with health
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care reform legislation to lower costs to consumers, preserve and provide a choice of doctors and health plans, insure stability and peace of mind, that coverage can't be delayed or denied, and insure quality patient center care. by the end of this day, i expect that this legislation will have moved through three committees in the house of representatives, and we will be one giant step closer to an american health care system where never again will an individual be discriminated against for a preexisting condition, dropped from coverage because of illness, forced to make job and life decisions based on loss of coverage, forced to pay out of pocket expenses for preventive
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care, limited annually or in their lifetime on coverage. this august, as we leave, 256 of us will go out to our communities, and we will be talking with our constituents about what this bill means to them, and i believe that when we come back this september, this congress will be prepared to make history. and with that, i am pleased to yield to the vice chair of our caucus. >> i thank our whip, and i am also here to pay great gratitude to the speaker and all the leadership, but most importantly to the democratic caucus in the house, because we have been an active and engaged group of members who have taken on the task given to us by the
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president to make change for this country. so whether it is big change or small change, this house has been very active. whether it was moving to get this country back to work and passing an economic recovery package or whether it was simply beefing up the cops on the beat program to make sure there were 50,000 new police officers throughout our communities ready to help those small businesses stay open, or ready to help make sure that that child could go to school safely, we did it. whether it was moving toward a reform of our health care system that would drive down costs and make sure that for the first time americans could say they would keep their health care whether they were sick, whether they had a change of job, or whether they were female versus male. we're going to do that. or if it could be as small a as something like giving the child of a fallen u.s. soldier the chance to take up the g.i. bill that would have been his or hers as a soldier had they not
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perished in defense of this country. big ideas, very small, but very small but important ideas, they are all a part of this congress to bring change to america. on behave of our chairman, i know he would like to tell everyone that when you can grab 170 members of the democratic caucus and have them sit over the course of five hours to listen to health care reform to the very n-th degree, you know that members of the democratic caucus in the house are very interested in. when we get to the point where we have energy policy that changes america, health care policy that changes america, when we put americans back to work, this house of representatives has been active and engaged. we are a do-a-lot congress, and we are very proud of that. with that i would like to introduce the assistant to the
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speaker. >> let me thank my colleague for all of his good work, and i'm very pleased to be with my colleagues today on what really has been a celebration of a historic congress. it has been historic in many ways, and one of the ways we have moved this country forward is through finally getting serious about changing our national energy strategy in a way that really moves us forward into the 21st century. through the actions we have taken in this congress, we have strengthened our national security by reducing our reliance on foreign oil. and at the same time put more people back to work here in this country investing in clean energy technologies and energy efficiency. i think the american people know that we export hundreds of billions of dollars a year overseas to the middle east and other places around the world to purchase foreign oil, when we should be investing those moneys right here at home in
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putting people back to work in clean energy technologies and energy efficiency. that is exactly what we have done, beginning with the economic recovery package, where we made an unprecedented investment in clean energy technology and energy efficiency. the vice president just announced not too long ago at the white house that that money is already being put to work. the department of energy has already identified $30 billion worth of projects and over $7 billion of money is already in the system through weatherization and other energy efficiency programs around the country. that was followed through by a landmark piece of legislation spearheaded by the speaker of the house and the president of the united states to finally move this country toward a situation where we really do put an end our reliance on
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foreign oil and also help protect our environment. it was a win-win-win, protecting our national security, protecting and increasing jobs here at home and investment, and of course protecting our planet from the problems associated with global climate change and all the incredible costs that that would bring with it. we all passed legislation and renewed that today, the very successful cash for clunkers program. i got it right, which obviously has been a big success with the american people and again accomplishing two goals at the same time. number one, helping to revive and resuscitate the u.s. auto industry and help keep people in their jobs in that industry. and at the same time advance our goal of reducing our reliance on foreign oil by getting people to switch from gases-guzzling cars to more fuel efficient cars, two very
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important objectives. we've also passed the green school modernization legislation here in the house, as well as a number of other measures to finally get serious about taking our energy policy into the 21st century. and finally i think we all believe that the american people should have an ton -- opportunity to enjoy the beautiful areas of this country . god has given a beauty to this country and to the planet, and we believe that we should set aside more areas through cones vation for the enjoyment of the american people -- conservation for the enjoyment of the american people. and we passed the omnibus american lands act, the most significant piece of legislation in many years and opened more area for the enjoyment of the american people.
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>> when you look at those areas, we have made historic strides. so i want to thank the speaker for her leadership, especially in passing the american clean energy and security act as part of the other historic efforts that we have undertaken in this congress. thank you. >> i thank my colleagues for their presentations and for their leadership. as you see, we take great pride in the advancements that we have made for the american people, and we have brought -- present it to you with all the commitment and specificity that will make a difference in the lives of the american people and take our country in a new direction. one our pillar of the president's plan is education. the education bill will be part of our bill when we come back in september on the floor. that is about early childhood education, it is about more
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people getting pel grants and making higher education more affordable. nothing brings more money to the treasury and grows the economy more than the education of the american people. we have heard the commitment, the specifics, the array of legislation that we are very proud of to take the country in a new direction. but again, they honor the principles of our budget, education, health care, energy policy, to create good jobs for the american people, to turn our economy around, to do so in a fiscally sound way, lowers the deficit and gives tax cuts to 95% of the american people. in that spirit of celebration and pride we take, we would be pleased to take any questions you may have. >> given the hard work you have done on these bills, given the
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fact that you are further behind -- [inaudible] >> we have worked very hard to get the appropriation bills done on time. we accomplished that objective. we have been working with senator reid, the leader in the senator with the chairman of the senate appropriations committee. i know they have been talking on a regular basis. they have passed four bills. we will work on trying to get afwreement on conferences for those four bills. i talked to senator murray, who is part of the senate leadership at the last leadership meeting. they are working very hard to get another four, five or six bills of -- to the floor. to the extent they do, we hope to conference those and have as many bills passed prior to september 30, when the fiscal year ends. if it does not end, we may need
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a very short-term c.r. for the remaining bills. we hope there are very few of them, but for the remaining bills, which we would then hope to complete in october. >> on the health care, why is it so difficult to explain how the insurance companies are leading the opposition and on cost -- while there is a plus for the bill, consumers can take $2 trillion and it does not measure that. >> they should also measure the benefits of prevention to our health care system. i appreciate your question. certainly you will be hearing a great deal from our members about the health insurance industry and what it has ton to the health of our country.
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you have a situation where consumers in our country are at the mercy of the health care industry. you see the c.e.o.s of these industries making millions of dollars a year, and indeed, many of them a million dollars a month for their leadership and withholding benefits to people in need. we think it is important to have this new legislation and that it should have a robust public option in it to keep the health industry honest, to encourage competition, to provide better care at a lower cost for more people in our country. mr. rangel never has a problem promoting his message, as you well know, but certainly as we two out there with the president leading the way, and with his commitment to the universal health care for all
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americans, and us being a drum beat, an echo chamber of that message, i think you will see that change. we have been hard at work, as you can see, writing the legislation, building consensus in our caucus as we convey a message. and now we will be mostly focused on the message part. but the glory days are coming to an end for the health insurance industry in our country. i have said that their profits are obscene. they have increased enormously over the past few years at the expense of america's consumers. that is why what is in it for the consumers in our bill, that no longer will an insurance company be able to withhold insurance because of preexisting conditions. no longer will you lose your health insurance if you lose your job, change jobs, start a business, be self-ememployed.
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you will still have health insurance. think about what that means to the vitality of our economy. we can encourage entrepreneurship while people will have confidence of having health insurance and take more risk. there will be a cap on what you pay each year but no cap on what you receive. do you know anybody with cancer, diabetes and the rest? they will not have a cap on the benefits they receive. and this makes all the difference in the world in their health and their economic security. the health insurance industry is the biggest opponent of this legislation passing and with a public option in it, because they know the glory days are over for them. the leverage has switched to the consumer. congress and the president will remove the insurance industry from coming between the patient and his or her doctor.
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>> speaker, where are you going to get the firepower to counter what you call the coming campaign of lies and misinformation on health care reform? >> is that what i called it? did i call it that? >> well, it was called that in a press conference. >> what we talked about was not the coming, but ongoing campaign of distortions and disinformation that you see out there throughout the country. what the owe opponents are reforming the system are enfaged in are the same kind of misinformation battles they waged in previous years. back in the 1990's, even when we talked about reforming medicare, you saw the same tuned of tactics used. sometimes they have been successful. fortunately, medicare is a great example of where they
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were not successful. we want to make sure that when our members go home, they have the information they need, and they do have the information they need, to talk to the american people about what this health reform legislation means for them. as the speaker said, it will bring down people's health care costs by providing more choice and competition, and it will make sure that people are not denied the coverage that insurance companies now deny through their own form of rationing health care. we are going to make sure that when our members go back home, that they are going to be talking to their constituents and the american people about the importance of health care reform. because as the president and others have said, the one way to assure that your premiums will continue to go up, and the one way to make sure your care will continue to be denied based on preexisting conditions
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or have the company take away a benefit when you need it the most is keeping the status quo. >> will it require more than members talking to people? >> it will. what you have seen is you have a lot of allied organizations that support health care reform that are already out there carrying the message, and will intensify that message over the nicks six weeks. aerp has endorsed the legislation. the a.m.a., which was opposed to medicare back in 1965 this time is on board in support of this legislation. and i think if you look at some of the other hate media that people -- paid media, you see people are on board. you have a lot of misinformation coming out of far right-wing radio, talk radio, and other outlets, and we need to make sure we get the message out there through our members as well as threw these
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allied organizations that support health care reform. we are confident the american people will support the bill. we want to make sure it doesn't get swift-voted during the month of augment >> i was counting on you all. i was hoping that you as reporters of the truth would put out the story and dispel the myth, scaring seniors, as the aarp is doing. if you are a senior, you are helped by this bill, making medicare more solven and stronger. if you have a small business, you will receive tax credits to provide coverage for your employees, and this in a way that recognizes the needs of small business. if you are a person who becomes sick, many families could escape bankruptcy each year due
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to unaffordable health benefits, but their needs are addressed in this legislation. we have given our members this card to take home. perhaps you have seen it. health insurance reform, to hold the insurance companies accountable. we urgently need reform, and this is available to all of you, and it talks about what is in it for the american people. i have spoken to many of these points already. but there will be a drum beat across america, a positive drum beat across america, about what this means to the american people, for them individually and their families, for our businesses to be more competitive, for our economy to be more dynamic. for our budget to be more in balance by reducing the up ward spiral of health care costs having an impact on our indictlements. it will be done in a fiscally sound way and to dispel the mything being put out there.
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this is a shock and awe carpet bombing by the health insurance industry to perpetuate the status quo, one where they don't have to be responsible for anti-trust laws. you know you cannot insure an insurance company, a health insurance company -- you cannot sue them if they deprive you of a procedure that your doctor and your hospital tell you that you need. but this bill corrects a good deal of that. it doesn't go into the ability to sue, but it goes into the recourse that a person will have. but make no mistake. facts mean nothing to them. mythology is their game. misrepresentation is their currency, and we intend to set the record straight. in some places by knock collating against their misrepresentation, in all cases by educating as to what this legislation does. i'm so confident of the wisdom
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of the american people and the fairness of the press, that our message will come through. >> thank you. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> you're watching c-span, public affairs programming courtesy of america's cable companies. next, a look at the cash for clunkers program with president obama. rights after that, house debate on cash for clunkers. >> on tomorrow morning's "washington journal," we will talk to justin hyde about the
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cash for clunkers program. david mason will discuss a bill to put limits on executive pay. and radio talk show hosts, joe madison and armstrong williams debate the state of race relations in america. it is live each morning at 7:00 eastern on c-span. >> on c-span radio hear 1968 l.b.j. phone calls with his secretary of state, richard nixon and billy graham. today at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span radio. >> president obama said today that the economy was in far worse shape than anybody realized last year and earlier this year. his comments last about five minutes. >> hello, everybody. >> how are you doing? >> doing good. well, i just wanted to say a
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few words about the economic numbers that we received this morning. the gross domestic product or g.d.p. is the measure measure of our overall economic growth as a motion. this morning the g.d.p. revealed that the recession we faced when i took office was even deeper than anyone thought at the time. it told us how close we were to the edge. but the g.d.p. also revealed that in the last few months, the economy has done measureably better than we had thought, better than expected. and as many communists will tell you -- economists will tell you, that part of the progress is directly tributeable to the recovery act. this and other difficult but important steps we have taken over the last six months have helped us put the brakes on the
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recession. we took unprecedented action to stem the spread of foreclosures by helping home owners stay in their homes and pay their mortgages. we helped revive the credit markets and open up loans for families and small businesses. and we enacted a recovery act that put tax cuts in the pockets of middle-class and small businesses, extended health insurance to those who lost their jobs, provided relief to struggling states to prevent layoffs, and made investments that are putting people back to work building bridges, roads, schools and hospitals. now, i realize that none of this is much comfort to those americans who are still out of work and struggling to make ends meet. and when we receive our monthly jobs report next week, it is likely to show that we are still continuing to lose far too many jobs. as far as i am concerned, we won't have a recovery as long as we keep losing jobs.
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i will not rest that every american who wants a job can find one. today's g.d.p. is an important sign that the economy is headed in the right direction and that business investment, which had been plummeting in the last several months, is showing signs of stabilizing. this means that eventually businesses will start growing and will start hiring fen, and that is when it will truly feel like a recovery to the american people. this won't happen overnight. as i have said before, it took us many more months to fully dig ourselves out of a recession that we now know was deeper than anyone thought. i will continue to work and take every step necessary to make sure that happens. i will intend to make sure we don't return to an economy where growth is based on inflated profits and maxed-out
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credit cards. we need a robust frothe based on a well trained work force and education costs kept down. one of the steps we have taken to boost our economy is an initiative known as cash for clunkers. basically this allows folks to trade in their older, less fuel efficient cars for credits that go towards buying newer, more fuel efficient cars. this gives consumers a break, replaces dangerous carbon pollution, and our dependence on foreign oil and strengthens the auto industry. not more than a few weeks ago there were skeptics who weren't sure this cash for clunkers program would work. but i'm happy to report it has succeeded well beyond all expectations, and we are seeing a dramatic increase in showroom traffic at local car dealers.
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it is working so well that there are legitimate concerns that funds in this program might soon be exhausted. we are not working with congress on a bipartisan solution to insure that the program can continue for everyone still looking to make a trade. i am encouraged that republicans and democrats are working to pass legislation today that would use some recovery ack funding to keep this program going, funding that we would work for replace down the road. thanks to gig responses, we are doing everything possible to continue this program and to continue helping consumers and the auto industry contribute to our recovery. i am very pleased with the progress that has been made in the house today on the cash for clunkers program. i am guardedly optimistic about the direction that our economy is going. but we have a lot more work to do, and i want to make sure that all the americans out there that are struggling because they are out of work or
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not having enough work know that this administration will not rest until the movement we are seeing on the business side starts translating into jobs for those people and their families. thank you very much, everybody. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> the cash for clunkers bill passed in the house with a vote of 316-109. here is a look at house debate on that program. it is just over 45 minutes. gentleman from wisconsin, mr. obey, and the gentleman from california, mr. lewis, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks on h.r. 3435.
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the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i yield myself three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. obey: mr. speaker, late yesterday, it came to our attention that the cash for clunkers program which enacted a few days ago has proven more wildly popular than its strongest supporters had predicted. just last month, congress passed the program which provided up to $4,500 if you trade in your old gas guzzler for a new car that gets better mileage. that was done in the hopes of spurring some new car sales and encouraging people to be a little more environmentally friendly. we provided $1 billion in the supplemental to get it going, enough for about 250,000 sales. the program kicked off monday, and it's already officially received 40,000 requests for reimbursement worth about $160 million in rebates. in is survey done by the national automobile dealer association this week suggest that at least 200,000 deals have been completed but not yet officially submitted.
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if that's true and we're being told that it probably is, then the entire $1 billion is just about exhausted, so we have before us a bill to provide stopgap funding for cash for clunkers by allowing the administration to transfer up to $2 billion from the department of energy innovative technology loan guarantee program which doesn't expect to award funding until late next year. some would call this letting the markets work. consumers have spoken with their wallets and they are saying they like this program and clearly it was intended to do what it was supposed to do, spur car sales in this sluggish economy. this will keep it going, hopefully. i'd urge support for the bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. lewis: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. chairman, i rise to point out the absurdity of the
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situation we find ourselves in today. in the majority's haste to slam legislation through the floor with almost no consideration at the committee level, with no time for consideration by the house membership in general, and with absolutely no ability for the members of this body to amend bills on the floor, we are now seeing the effects of such short-sided martial law tactics. mr. chairman, the cash for clunkers program was passed on the suspension calendar, so no members were able to offer amendments. the senate had a exarble which will with some significant differences. the house and senate bills should have gone to full and open conference so those differences could have been negotiated and a conference report then brought for a vote. instead the leadership of this body, without consultation or negotiation, struck the house
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version of cash for clunkers, they stuck it on what was supposed to be a, quote, clean war supplemental, a bill only for the purpose of funding and supporting our troops and our efforts overseas and the war on terror. they had to do that because of the mess the majority created of the conferenced bill and i use that term loosely as most of the funding levels and programs were determined not in a conference but by the house leadership and by my chairman. but when it came to counting votes, the leadership and the chairman had to do some dancing and started loading up the war supplemental with extraneous and unrelated items on -- all of which needed to get more votes. cash for clunkers was one of those items. my colleagues in the senate, senator feinstein in particular and senator collins, had some serious concerns with the house
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bill. senator feinstein tried to negotiate some changes to improve the program, but was rebuffed, as i understand it, by my chairman. basically they were told it was his way or the highway. here we are today, not one hearing on the cash for clunkers program in the appropriations committee, not one hearing on the needs of the program prior to receiving funds, no one hearing on how the first $1 billion has been spent, not one hearing on how much money the program will need to get through the fiscal year. instead we find ourselves on the suspension calendar for the second time in three days. bailing out another program, shoveling another $2 billion out the door this fiscal year after we shoveled $14 billion out the door to bail out the highway programs and other related items.
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my colleagues are going to pat themselves on the back for finding an offset for this transfer and for that i say two things. first, you should have been finding ways to offset spending all year. second, if there was an extra $2 billion in a stimulus program that was suitable for a different purpose, why did we spend the $2 billion in the first place? how many other billions of dollars are in the stimulus not being spent that we can return to our taxpayers? now, many of my colleagues will say, this is a great program, a necessary -- and necessary for the revitallyization for the economy and the car did industry and i'm not really going to argue with those goals. those are good goals and we are looking for solutions. however we are sure this program is working like it's supposed to. i don't think so. how is it that we didn't hear of this funding problem until last
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night and even then we were told there's roughly 24 hours before they were going to shut down the program? this program has only been up and running one week. if that is how the government is going to handle $1 billion programs affecting all americans, i ask, whatever will we do if the administration takes control of our health care system? i quote one car dealer from new york, if they can't administer a program like this, i'd be a little concerned about my health insurance. i would say, amen. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves his time. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i yield myself 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i'm not going to give any political speeches. we're simply trying to react to one program the public has apparently latched onto.
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the demand for this was so great that within three days of its inception the funds were apparently totally used up. that indicates that we need to do something if we don't want the program to shut down three days after it begins. that's what we're trying to do today and with that i yield two minutes to the distinguished gentleman from new york. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for two minutes. >> i thank the chairman for the time. mr. speaker, i was one of the original co-sponsors or sponsors of the cash for clunkers bill. many of us knew that it would work well. few of us realized how well it would work. this program has been truly stimtive. many people are questioning whether the congress -- stimulative. many people are qug whether the congress is passing anything that will stimulate theconomy. this program has stimulated the economy. we have doubled car sales over the past five years. this is truly stimulative. it is creating jobs, it is a creating a surge for -- it is creating a surge for car
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dealers. the american consumers are satisfied with it. the american consumer has taken cash for clunkers on a test drive and they want to continue driving cash for clunkers. they want to continue this program. in fact, not only should we continue it over the next six weeks by providing emergency funding, but we ought to improve it when we return in september. we should improve it by increasing the efficiency standards, we should improve it by making used cars eligible for the program, we should improve it through a long-term program because we have learned that the short-term program was so successful that we have exhausted the funds in only five days. this is an example of a bipartisan program that makes sense. we need to create a bridge of funding for the next six weeks, come back and extend it and improve it into the future. i want to thank the distinguished chairman for yielding me the time and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california.
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mr. lewis: mr. speaker, i yield to the gentlelady from michigan >> thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker i was produced to be the represent sponsor of the original legislation we passed a number of months ago. cash for clunkers, what a fantastic success. it has exceeded everybody's expectations. people are saying it is the best $1 billion in funds the federal government has ever spent. first of all, the ceo of one of the nation's largest auto groups said the most brilliantly conceived program put forward. ford motor company said it was a huge success. it congress appropriated $1 billion and we are only several days into the program and we need more cash for cash for clunkers. if we can think about the tremendous economic multiplier effect this is having. it is good for the auto
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dealers, good for the manufacturers, for the suppliers, for workers, for the states, mr. speaker. think about all of the revenue being generated by sales tax and licensing fees as well. good for the environment. getting all these old vehicles off the road, and it is absolutery great for consumers. here is one letter i got from a lady in michigan. thank you for pushing through and helping develop this cash for clunkers legislation. i am now the happy owner of eastern american-made 2010 ford fusion. it has been 12 years since i have been able to purchase a new vehicle. due to the cash for clunkers plan, i was able to save over $70,000 before tax on my ford fusion. my old vehicle was a 1995 ford win star with 150,000 miles. we are excited for her. mr. speaker, throughout our nation's history since we have had the automobile.
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it has been able sales that has lit hi pulled our nation out of recession, and this time is going to be the same. same. i think we are seeing ourselves being placed on the road to economic recovery here and this road is paved by the cash for clunkers program. i actually wrote a letter at the beginning of this week to the speaker and to the house leadership saying that we were going to run out of money and that we were going to need some more money for this program. here we are on friday of the first week. we absolutely need to do this, mr. speaker, we cannot leave for our august recess until we fund -- until we vote for this reprogramming of unspent economic stimulus funds for this program. we need to do it. and one other thing, for those who keep saying that we need to get the government out of the automobile business, if you really want to get the government out of the pocket of general motors or whatever, this is the way to do it, mr. speaker. i would urge my colleagues to support this bill. it is very, very important. not just for the state of michigan, this is a national economic program, best thing we've ever done.
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more cash for cash for clunkers. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. obey: i yield a minute and 45 seconds to the gentleman from michigan, mr. levin. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for one minute and 45 seconds. mr. levin: i ask unanimous consent to revise. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. levin: the public has spoken . consumers have been going to dealerships. the white house has now acted and the issue is whether this house will respond. as i see it and i think the public will see it this is a test whether congress can shed its disagreements on other
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issues and respond to what the public indeed wants. the rush to use this program shows its need. i say to the gentleman from california and anybody else, what else do we need to see? this program is working. the white house has made clear that the dealers can go forward. this program is open until further notice and dealers are urged not to rush too much but to do it right in the first place and get in line. so, it's open until further notice. the question is whether this institution will shut it down or whether it will continue to open up the valves? it will be good for everybody,
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it will be good for the national economy. this is an issue -- michigan, ohio, wisconsin, indiana, illinois, but for whole the -- for the whole nation. this is an issue of our national economic recovery and anyone who votes no on this is saying no to an important boost to our economy at a critical time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california. mr. lewis: mr. chairman, i am proud to yield two minutes to the co-chairman of the bipartisan auto caucus, the gentleman from michigan. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for two minutes. >> i thank my friend from california. i'm from this great state of michigan where our unemployment is sadly at 15.2%. almost twice the national average. last night we learned from the national association of auto dealers that in fact this program in three days has brought about almost a quarter of a million new car sales in
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just those three days yet the cash is going to run out literally in the next couple of days without an infusion. it's important that we're not taking new money, this is existing money. this bill moves existing money into other accounts so it will not add to this year's deficit. but it is going to run out without this legislation. here is today's "usa today," full page ad by chrysler, dodge, jeep, $4,500 if you bring in dollars back, if you purchase a new vehicle, bring in your old one. a lot of our auto dealers can do it. whether it's the big three or the transplants, too. nationwide one in 10 jobs are auto related. in michigan it's about one in four, one in five jobs. auto sales, the last three years -- auto sales the last three years have declined by nearly 50%. 16 other countries have done this.
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whether it be germany, south korea, even slovakia has done this. and in all of those 16 countries, car sales have come back. this country has lost one in five manufacturing jobs in the last 16 months. if we want to keep jobs here in this country, bring back some of those that we have lost, obviously it's got to be in the auto sector where one in 10 jobs are auto related. this bill sends those dominoes the other way. it brings people back in the showroom, we've demonstrated that just this week. it brings back the call orders, we've heard in a number of dealers across michigan that they're running out of cars. guess what they're going to do? they're going to order them back and that's going to bring people back to work. wouldn't you rather have -- let me just end on this, wouldn't you rather have people working and paying taxes than being unemployed and receiving benefits which in michigan are becoming exhausted? i ask my colleagues to vote for this bill.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. obey: mr. speaker, i yield a minute and a half to the distinguished gentleman from michigan, mr. dingell. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. dingell: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. dingell: mr. speaker, i rise to commend the leadership and commend my dear friend, the chairman of the appropriations committee, for his extraordinary leadership on this matter. the success of the cars program in just a few short days has been extraordinary. the program has been doing so well, in fact, the initial $1 billion allocated for the program is already running low. this is a great problem to have in the midst of all the difficulties that we confront. it's a sign that the program is not only working well and the consumers are very interested, but it's also proving that cars is providing a jolt, a
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meaningful upward jolt to our economic recovery efforts. this is a simple extension. it's an infusion of money in an area where it's needed and where it's working. the legislation should not get bogged down by calls for changing the program. that would only serve to stall the extension and confuse consumers. we cannot and should not make changes in an extraordinarily successful program that has only been operating for a week. that would be irresponsible. i would add that the additional $2 billion for the program has already been appropriated under arra and will not cost the taxpayers an additional time. i ask for passage of the bill. i commend the leadership and i thank my dear friend, the chairman of the committee, and the other members of the committee who has made it possible for us to consider this legislation so fast. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california.
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mr. lewis: mr. speaker, i yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. hensarling. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for two minutes. mr. hensarling: i thank the gentleman for yielding. cash for clunkers, mr. speaker. obviously it's a popular program. it's a clever title. it pays people several thousand dollars to trade in their old cars if they buy new cars. and, yes, yes, mr. speaker, people are hurting in the auto industry. there's no doubt about it. but i would also note that the taxpayers are hurting. $80 billion to chrysler and g.m., and the auto industry, the auto industry does not have a monopoly on hard times in this economy. recently one of the largest poultry producers in america, pilgrim's pride, just a few miles outside of my congressional district, they had to declare chapter 11. maybe we should have a cash for cluckers program and pay people to eat chicken. then after that we can have a program to pay people to buy
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tv's and then a program to pay people to buy lumber. it would pass the test. it has a clever title. it would help a large industry. it would put free money in the hands of consumers, but this is not, this is not a humorous affair, mr. speaker. and it's not humorous because this is an extension of a program that has the government picking winners and losers. why is the auto industry the winner, why is the poultry industry the loser? this is one more step in enshrining us as a bailout nation. now, people say, well, it's $2 billion that's coming out of the stimulus program. well, i would tell my distinguished colleagues that that is still $2 billion that has to be borrowed from the chinese with the bill sent to our children and grandchildren at a time when the national deficit has hit $1 trillion for the first time in history. you cannot bail out, borrow and spend your way into economic
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prosperity. instead, let's unleash the spirit of entrepreneurial capitalism, let's help small businesses with tax relief, let's grow our way out of this economic recession. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. obey: i yield a minute and a half to the distinguished gentleman from michigan, mr. kildee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. kildee: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, when we passed the cash for clunkers legislation last month, i said it would provide a much-needed boost to our auto industry and our manufacturing communities. after just one week we see the great success of this program. i've been working closely with the white house, the auto task force and my congressional cleeds to add addition -- colleagues to add additional funds to keep it up and running. this program has been an unprecedented success and there are no plans to suspend it. this program is a successful
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example of economic stimulus at work. to continue this positive program, i have joined my colleagues today to introduce legislation to redirect $2 billion from the economic stimulus bill to the cash for clunkers program. we are poised to pass this legislation through the house of representatives today and urge my senate colleagues to do the same as quickly as possible. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. lewis: i yield, mr. speaker, two minutes to the gentleman from michigan, mr. hoekstra. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for two minutes. mr. hoekstra: i thank my colleague for yielding. i'd like to begin by thanking the chairman of the committee and the ranking member of the appropriations committee for moving so expeditiously in getting this bill to the floor of the house this afternoon. you know, the response from consumers to this program has been, as one of my dealers described it this week, he had chaos in his showroom. it accomplished what we wanted it to accomplish.
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i was skeptical when this program passed a while back, but it has delivered customers into the showroom, and they are buying cars. and being from michigan, experiencing a 15.2% unemployment rate, this is not going to only provide opportunities for employment in the people that assemble cars but also for the suppliers and those types of things. and hopefully this can be a catalyst for a stronger economic recovery. it appears to be one of the programs in the stimulus package that have passed this house that actually appears to be working. at the same time, while we are, at the same time, while we are, you know, maybe euphoric about i think we also have to recognize that the back end of this program, the parts that are being handled by the federal government have been a disaster for our dealers. i have yet to have one dealer who has sold a car that has gotten it approved by the department of transportation. we can't -- the federal government can't process a simple rebate. i've got dealers that have
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submitted the paperwork three times and have gotten three rejections. the last one came back and said no reason for rejection. what is a dealer supposed to do? they have already destroyed the cars traded in, sold the car, and they are now on the hook expecting a check for $3500 to $4500 from the federal government, and they are not getting it. we need to get these back room problems fixed to call this program successful. it can't be the front end. it has to be the entire process from selling it to the customer to the dealer getting the money from the federal government. that all has to work for this program to be a success. thank you. >> the gentlemen from wisconsin? >> mr. chairman, i yield 1:45 to the gentleman from ohio. >> i thank the gentleman for the time. mr. speaker i


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