The Internet campaigns for and against President Obama’s health care plan went down to the wire tonight as pressure from opponents failed to derail the policy overhaul in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Senate Republicans promised a procedural vote, with a spokesman for Sen. Mitch McConnell saying the rule under which the legislation was considered in the House violated congressional rules on reconciliation by including recommendations relating to the Social Security Act.
“The entire reconciliation bill is subject to a point of order and rejection in the Senate,” said McConnell aide Don Stewart.
Meanwhile, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer directed staff to lobby for the bill with a list of “18 immediate benefits” the law would have on Americans.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi published the following claimed benefits:
“SMALL BUSINESS TAX CREDITS
“CLOSE THE MEDICARE PART D DONUT HOLE – Immediate $250 rebate; next year, 50% discount on brand names; fully closed by 2020.
“FREE PREVENTIVE CARE UNDER MEDICARE – No co-payments and deductibles for seniors.
“HELP FOR EARLY RETIREES – Temporary coverage for ages 55-64.
“PROHIBITS INSURANCE COMPANIES FROM CANCELLING POLICIES OF PEOPLE WHO GET SICK.
“NO DISCRIMINATON AGAINST CHILDREN with pre-existing conditions.
“BAN LIFETIME COVERAGE LIMITS
“BAN RESTRICTIVE ANNUAL LIMITS on coverage, for new plans.
“FREE PREVENTIVE CARE UNDER NEW PRIVATE PLANS – No co-payments or deductibles.
“NEW, INDEPENDENT APPEALS PROCESS for new plans.
“ENSURING VALUE FOR PREMIUM PAYMENTS – Plans in individual and small group market must spend 80% of premiums on medical services, large group markets spend 85%.
“INTERIM COVERAGE IN HIGH-RISK POOL FOR THOSE WITH PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS until Exchange is available.
“EXTEND CHILD COVERAGE TO 26TH BIRTHDAY through parents’ insurance; our most uninsured group.
“COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS – Investment to allow for doubling number of patients over 5 years.
“MORE PRIMARY CARE DOCTORS – New investment in training.”