Bob Unruh joined WND in 2006 after nearly three decades with the Associated Press, as well as several Upper Midwest newspapers, where he covered everything from legislative battles and sports to tornadoes and homicidal survivalists. He is also a photographer whose scenic work has been used commercially.More ↓Less ↑
The November election is getting closer. And so is the possibility that Obamacare – with its so-called “death panels,” government intervention in health-care decisions and mandates for all consumers to buy the insurance the government specifies – simply will be repealed.
The effort has been assembled by U.S. Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, whose discharge petition would call for a new House vote on the proposal.
It needs 218 signatures of House members, and since that constitutes a majority in the 435-member House, the goal of the discharge petition likely would be accomplished, he has explained. The effort now has 173 signatures, only a few dozen short of the number required.
The plan had collected 170 signatures before the summer congressional break, but since members of Congress returned to Washington, three more names – Jim Gerlach of Pennsylvania, Gene Taylor of Mississippi and Steve Buyer of Indiana – have been added.
King also this week released a statement about Obamacare, noting that it has been six months since its adoption.
“Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi once said that Congress had to pass Obamacare so that Americans would know what was in it. Americans have now had six months to review this unconstitutional legislation, and the majorities seeking repeal continue to grow,” he said.
He said more than 20 states already have filed lawsuits against Obamacare, and voters in Missouri have passed a law protecting themselves from Obama’s “unconstitutional ‘individual mandate.’”
“A recent survey by Rasmussen Reports concludes that 61 percent of the American public wants Obamacare repealed,” King said. “Americans should urge their representatives to sign Discharge Petition No. 11 and should also insist that members of Congress pledge to withhold funding for Obamacare’s implementation in future Congresses.”
The effort in the House continues gaining momentum even though it has been reported but little in the media. Under House rules, once King’s discharge petition acquires the needed number of names, it would move forward even if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi vigorously opposes it.
All of the GOP representatives and 34 Democrats opposed Obamacare when it was passed on a narrow 219-212 vote earlier this year. King said 212 representatives, at least, should be in favor of overturning it, since they previously opposed it.
Then it will be up to the handful of Democrat votes that would be needed to turn from endorsement to rejection for it to advance.
He also said there are a number of Democrats who supported the nationalization plan who now are running for re-election in districts where residents oppose it.
The proposal states: “Pursuant to clause 2 of rule XV, I, Steve King of Iowa, move to discharge the Committees on Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means, Education and Labor, the Judiciary, Natural Resources, Rules, House Administration and Appropriations from the consideration of the bill (H.R. 4972) to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which was referred to said committees on March 25, 2010, in support of which motion the undersigned Members of the House of Representatives affix their signatures.”
Its target is the $940 billion, or greater, bill adopted by the Democrat-controlled Congress in March.
King said he expects the numbers “to swell.”
“Once the discharge petition reaches 218 signatures, Speaker Pelosi will not be able to prevent the repeal legislation from receiving, and passing, a vote on the floor,” King’s announcement said.
The congressman said the process may be a little complicated to rid the nation of thousands of pages of laws that a majority of voters oppose, but it can be done.
The discharge petition is first, which then can be used as a litmus test against Democrats in November, he said. The likelihood is that if the GOP returns to a majority in the House in November, while President Obama still could veto a complete repeal, the House simply could shut off funding for the program until a new president is elected in 2012, he explained.
In a related effort, almost 41,000 voices from across America are offering their encouragement to members of the House who have yet to sign the discharge petition offered by King.
Whereas, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, approved by a narrow vote of the House of Representatives earlier this year, threatens to transform the U.S. health-care system from its roots in free enterprise and personal choice;
Whereas, the act is unconstitutional because of its unprecedented requirement that Americans purchase a service;
Whereas, the system the law would create is financially unsustainable, places personal medical decisions in the hands of bureaucrats and is likely to lead to rationing of health-care options;
Whereas, the act is likely to result in forcing some 87 million Americans to drop their current health-care coverage;
Whereas, the costs involved in complying with the law are likely to cost more Americans their jobs, inhibit the creation of new employment opportunities and suppress wages …
The petition drive was launched by Joseph Farah, founder and CEO of WorldNetDaily, who said the results are worthy of note already.
“This is a very impressive petition, but it will be much more impressive at 100,000 or 200,000 or 1 million,” he said. “We need people signing and spreading the news about this effort – news that has not been reported anywhere else expect at WND.”