The Senate Pats Itself on the Back . . . . .

The Caucus

Senate Passes 9/11 Health Bill as Republicans Back Down
Wow, the Senate passed the 9/11 health care measure, although they cut 2 years and an average of a hundred mil or so off the original amount – after all, now we have to be budget conscious. 
‘Schumer and Gillibrand called the deal a “Christmas miracle.”’  If so, John Stewart was Santa, the Magi, and Clarence the angel rolled into one because no one will convince me this happens before Christmas without his show – the ‘news’ show seen by more people each night than any other – last week, otherwise nothing happens on this.
As far as the short fall here’s a statement by one of the Republicans who held this up in the first place:

One of the main critics of the bill, Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma, expressed satisfaction with the legislation’s final price tag.

“Every American recognizes the heroism of the 9/11 first responders,” he said. “But it is not compassionate to help one group while robbing future generations of opportunity.”

And there you have it: it’s not fair to help out the guys who ran into the towers, worked year round to shift through debris for pieces of people, cleaning up, literally and metaphorically, the mess. . . . at the costs of ‘future generations’.  Coburn should just put up a sign saying “Stay on the Couch!”  His message is clear, help out, do your duty (civic, moral, whatever) and be treated like the masses.  Presumably he brings this attitude to funding VAs, paying the military, taking care of veterans. . .

The congratulations and rhetoric are insidious, twisted – you owe a duty to the people who put themselves on the line for their fellow man, strangers all. . . . regardless of cost – financial or otherwise.  One would think this self-evident, but, then again, when was the last time a Senator put himself on the line for anyone other than his re-election?*

*Edward Baker, Oregon, killed at Ball’s Bluff in 1862, leading a regiment while still serving in the Senate?


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