Tom Colburn: American SOB — Blocking 9/11 health care bill

by Ben Hoffman

Amid mounting pressure from Democrats and a growing handful of Republicans to pass a bill that would provide health care benefits to first responders who were at the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn announced on Monday his intentions to block passage of the legislation.

He tells Politico that he “wouldn’t allow the bill to move quickly” due to “problems with parts of the bill and the process Democrats are employing” to pass it.

Coburn defended his position in a Tuesday morning interview on Fox News, arguing that “this is a bill that’s been drawn up and forced through Congress at the end of the year on a basis to solve a problem that we didn’t have time to solve and we didn’t get done.”

Coburn also argued that the bill, entitled the Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, “hasn’t even been through a committee.” Coburn added: “We haven’t had the testimony to know.” (ThinkProgress notes that on June 29, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions – on which Coburn sits – held a hearing on the bill. But Coburn’s office says that doesn’t amount to having gone “through a committee.”)

Meanwhile, a growing chorus of Republican commentators has begun to pressure GOP senators to revise their positions, arguing that the health of first responders is a sensitive national issue – and that opposing it could be politically unwise.

“Why wouldn’t we take care of their health care?” wondered the conservative-leaning talk show host Joe Scarborough during his MSNBC show “Morning Joe” on Tuesday. “It’s just like taking care of veterans’ health care… It can’t be a good move for Republicans to oppose a bill for the firefighters and the cops on 9/11.”

Scarborough also questioned the argument – posited by some of those opposing the bill – that health care for 9/11 first responders should be covered by New York residents. “How did this become a New York issue?” Scarborough wondered. “That is like Pearl Harbor becoming a Hawaii issue in 1951. It’s ridiculous.”

Former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee of Arkansas has already made public his opinion that “every Republican” should support the bill – but in a Fox News appearance on Monday night, he plead his case further. “There are people who need medical care right now, and frankly, the clock is running out on them,” he said. “Their lives are fading away, even as we sit here talking about it.”

Read more…

Obama needs to hold a press conference and call the Republicans out on this. But he won’t because he’s a pansy-ass.

2 Comments to “Tom Colburn: American SOB — Blocking 9/11 health care bill”

  1. And the corporate tax increases and the “rich” taxes that Liberals say will pay for it are your real motive.
    Compassion from a Liberal means you either get it crammed down your throat or crammed up your ass.
    And this is no different.

  2. Whoops! They passed it. Even the mean old Republicans.
    They just vut out all the fat and made it more accountable.
    Gee, that WAS EVIL. 🙂

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