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Senator Joe Lieberman: “Public Option is Unnecessary”

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The news, pundits, politicians, and bloggers have been on fire over Saturday night’s historical vote––220 to 215 on H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act, passed with one Republican in favor and 39 Democrats opposed.

Joe Lieberman appeared on Fox News Sunday, spending most of his time discussing the Fort Hood mass murder. With just less than a minute left, Chris Wallace dared to ask about the ‘F factor’; “Do you still intend, if there is a public option and if there’s this tax on so-called Cadillac health plans, will you support a Republican filibuster on final passage in the Senate?” Lieberman noted that there are good things in the Democratic plan which just passed the House, noting that we “ought to do health care reform this year to deal with the two great problems that President Obama and others have talked about:” the unsustainable continuing increases in the cost of health care and the millions of Americans who don’t have health insurance. However, he did discuss his fear that “[his] colleagues in the House added a lot on to that, that subtract from the genuine purposes of health care reform”. One thing Lieberman referred to was the public option plan proposed by Pelosi and the House Democrats and he firmly stressed, “The public option plan is unnecessary”. Lieberman is convinced that the people who put forward this plan are those who really want the government to take over all of health insurance, concluding that this would be “wrong.”

When Chris Wallace posed the question more directly, “At this point you are a NO vote in the Senate?” Lieberman responded, “If the public option plan is in there, as a matter conscience I will not allow this bill to come to a final vote,” relaying his concern over our country’s mounting 12 trillion dollar debt, “I believe the debt can break America…”

As Nancy Pelosi basked in her glory Saturday evening, “Oh what a night”, and other Democrats put her on a pedestal, proclaiming her to be one of the greatest House Speakers in the history of the U.S., I had to hold my breath. I’ll give Pelosi a lot of credit for moving health care reform this far, however, her method of using abortion to keep the House Democrats’ bill alive is disturbing. It doesn’t take a detective to come to the conclusion that the Stupak Amendment was a ploy to get the pro-life Democrats on board because without them the bill would have died. And worse, at the end of the day it is doubtful this amendment will remain intact in the final bill.

What is laughable is Pelosi’s claim that she has “listened to the American people” and is representing the will of the people; all under the guise of helping us American citizens, “A great victory for the American people”, she said. Where was Pelosi this past summer, when thousands of protesters gathered and town hall meetings where held across the country demonstrating their disapproval for ObamaCare? Did she miss the “Kill the Bill” rally where approximately ten thousand people gathered on Capitol Hill, November 5th, just two days before the vote? Didn’t she see the paper trail left outside her office by the protesters?

Pelosi needs to get her facts straight. The next time she proclaims that she stands for the American people; it would be more accurate if she were to state that she is representing 42% percent of the American people. Last I checked, 54% is a majority. While most Americans, if not all, want health care reform and are troubled by the millions of uninsured, fewer than half want the Democrats’ plan. Many are getting the sense that Pelosi is more concerned about her own agenda: the progressive movement, social justice, government control, and the special interest groups she’s harvested along the way, than she is about the American people.

Just as we had “Joe the Plumber” who realized that the redistribution of wealth is amiss, we now have “Joe the Senator,” who believes that it is wrong for our government to take over the health insurance industry, and worse, the entire health care system. Although our plumber was exposed as not possessing an actual plumbing license, Lieberman, on the other hand, is a Senator packed full of credentials, with the power to be part of obstructing ObamaCare (or is it PelosiCare) if it still contains the public option when it hits the Senate. Let’s hope he stands his ground when the time comes and Joe says NO to the public option and others rise to rally against government takeover of our health and its ramifications––literally and economically!

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About Christine Lakatos

  • November 9th update: The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 45% now favor the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. Most (52%) remain opposed.

  • Barbara J S Whitman

    I am a retired Rn. I support the health plan That just past. When I first retired from the VA Wade Park Hospital in Cleveland I started A home Health care service. I did provide a healthcare Ins for my employees, but the private Insurance would not pay me for my service unless I was approved by medicare. I would like to talk with you about the problems people had who did not have health Ins. We need this health care to plan past. Many people can’t afford the private ins. The LIES the Republicans use are to frighten you and others, not supporting this health plan in hopes that President Obama will fail.

  • Arch Conservative

    Jacksmith? More like Jackoff.

    I called Lieberman’s office today and was told Joe will not let anything with a public option come to a vote in the Senate.

    There’s no way in hell the House bill passes in the Senate.

  • Hey Arch: Go Joe!

  • Arch Conservative

    The liberals, progressives.. whatever they’re calling themselves these days stuck a knife in Joe Lieberman’s back three years ago. Now they’re all getting their panties in a bunch because he won’t do their bidding.

    You go Joe is right Christine.

    The moonbats were clapping themselves on the back this weekend… well the ones at Planned Abortionhood and NARAL weren’t but the rest were. Now they’re suffering from delusions that not only will the bill pass the Senate but the Stupak amendment will be replaced by one that provides you with a “save 30 dollars” on your next abortion with every fillup at a Mobile station.

    Aing happenin.

    How maddening it must me to be a moonbat today. Your party has the White House, the Senate, and the House of Reps and you still can’t force your uber leftist adgenda upon the nation.

    Oh……….the horror!

  • Taken together, virtually all polling indicates that the nation is essentially divided 50/50 regarding the just passed House health care reform bill.

    Of course, most people on either side of the debate don’t really have any idea what they are for or against. It’s mainly a response to the rhetoric being spewed from all sides.

    However, the conceit that those opposed to “Obamacare” represent the voice of the nation is bunk as the polling would suggest.

    As to the November 5th rally or “news conference” as Michelle Bachmann referred to it, the numbers in attendance have been all over the place. A photo taken from above and behind the dais at the height of the rally show what couldn’t be more than 3 or 4 thousand people, yet some idiot Republican congressman said that he was sure well over a million people were there. Really?

    CNN posted the photo of the rally next to a photo taken from the same spot of the “million man march” that took place at the mall some years ago. While it was subsequently stated that the million man march fell well short of its goal, there were estimated to be something in the range of five hundred thousand to six hundred thousand in attendance. Looking at the two photos, it’s comical to believe that anything more than a relative handful of people attended Ms. Bachmann’s “news conference.”

    As to a government take over of our health care? I’m all for it. I can’t imaging why anyone would be pulling for the private health insurance industry which has done more to stand between patients and their physicians than one can imagine. Some people voice concern for the private heath insurance industry. I couldn’t care less. If it all disappeared in a puff of smoke, I’d be delighted.

    The unreasoned opposition to government health care is ludicrous. Assuming any health care reform makes it to Obama’s desk without at least a public option, it will prove to be nothing more than a further boon to health insurers – one of the supposed major targets of all this effort in the first place.

    It was not a Pelosi ploy to include the abortion ammendment. It was demanded by some moderate Dems and of course all of the tight assed Reps, most of whom, in the end didn’t vote for the health care bill anyhow.

    It is also interesting to note that both of the sponsers of the abortion ammendment are members of “The Family” as revealed in Jeff Sharlot’s book of that name, as are a # of both congressional Dems & Reps who voted for the abortion ammendment. You all ought to read a little about that, if you haven’t. Talk about “moonbats.”


  • I think socialized medicine is great, if handled right – and if the country can afford it. I didn’t read the health bill that passed the lower chamber of your congress, but whatever its provisions are, you cannot afford it.

    This whole debate sounds like a pair of bums walking down 5th Avenue in Manhattan arguing which Armani suit to buy – when together, the two of them have barely enough cast to buy some rubby-dub, and certainly not enough even for a bottle of Port wine.

    It’s a joke! You guys have my sympathy. Really you do. When Obama leaves the lot of you in poverty, all “millionaires” or “billionaires” holding money that is worthless (Who Wants to be a Trillionaire?), you will finally understand what I’m talking about. Until then, enjoy the Kool-Aid.

  • John

    Government run health care?

    Oh no, a federally-funded institution. That’ll never happen in America. Of course, if you choose to ignore the United States Postal Service and public education.

    You tell me what’s worse: A health care system where providers ultimately have nothing to gain or lose through providing service, or a corporately managed health care system where providers stand to make a profit by denying service.

    I would call the rhetoric behind “Kill the Bill” misinformed, but that would imply that those who have been coaxed so easily into protest were capable of being informed to begin with. Crying “socialism” to a system that developed, non-socialist countries use successfully is almost as bad a reason as saying “I don’t like it just ’cause.”

    If everything were up to the nay-sayers, this country would have no innovations to speak of.

  • Clavos

    Oh no, a federally-funded institution. That’ll never happen in America. Of course, if you choose to ignore the United States Postal Service and public education.

    Both of which are unmitigated disasters and, along with Medicare, living proof that giving the government control of anything, including health care, is a big mistake.

  • Christine,

    Rasmussen is just ONE polling operation.

    Other polls show significant support for a Public Option.

    I support a public option because it is NEEDED. The private sector has NOT and WILL NOT serve all the needs of the American people.

    Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut?
    He says he won’t allow a vote on a bill with a public option, even though THIS situation exists in his home state:

    “The number of uninsured in Connecticut has increased from 317,000 in 2001 to 343,000 in 2008. The percent of non-elderly adults without insurance increased from 12.4% to 13.7%. And this number only considers people who are uninsured for an entire year – it does not include people in Connecticut who have more recently lost coverage through the recession, or who had shorter gaps in their coverage.

    Private coverage is eroding under the status quo. The percentage of people with employer-based coverage decreased from 79.8% of the population in 2001 to 74.9% in 2008.

    More workers are being left without protection from health care costs. Too many workers in Connecticut do not have health coverage, at 225,000 in 2008. And the proportion of workers from Connecticut without insurance has increased, from 11.6% in 2001 to 12.9% in 2008.

    The problem of the uninsured is a problem that crosses income brackets. The new Census numbers also drive home the fact that everyone in Connecticut is vulnerable to losing health insurance.”

    This is the system you and Joe Lieberman are fighting for, Christine? I mean, I understand Lieberman. He is, after all, connected to PRIVATE INSURANCE COMPANIES so intimately…

    “Insurance giant Aetna, represented by the blue line above, fared the best among all of the health insurance companies. Aetna is based in Hartford, CT. It is also the tenth largest single private contributor to Lieberman’s re-election committee.”

    The interesting thing about the above quote and the post I retieved it from…look at the stock performances surrounding the Lieberman announcement.

    Christine, I’m going to give YOU the benefit of the doubt, since I don’t believe you’re on Aetna’s, or any other Big Insurance Corporation’s payroll. I know for a fact that you’ve made statements here about how you’d like to change the health insurance system in America so that people who don’t have it can get it, and people who can’t or can no longer afford it can.

    I would just like to know WHY you think that private insurance corporations like AETNA give a damn about what you or I would like since we have NO OTHER OPTION for health insurance coverage?

    Clavos, good luck on privatizing everything.


  • Arch Conservative

    Blah blah blah….save your breath Cobra.

    It aint happening.

  • Arch Conservative writes:

    “Blah blah blah….save your breath Cobra.

    It aint happening.”

    Oh, I believe it will happen. It might not be everything to all people, but there will be compromises made. There may even have to be triggers/opt outs etc…but I believe President Obama will sign a health care reform bill.

    Your message is apparently the same one Joe Lieberman’s to 343,000 uninsured Connecticut residents and thousands of more UNDERinsured and over-premiumed constituents–

    “Go to hell.”


  • I’m going to drive thi point home on every single thread about “health care” in the US. Properly managed, a system of combined public-private health care that is mandatory is something that every nation should have – IF THEY CAN AFFORD IT. Forty years ago, America could afford it. Today – it’s the fantasy of a bum lookin at a fancy clothing shop in Manhattan, dreaming of buying the Armani suit he sees in the shop window – but who hasn’t even the money for rubby-dub or a bottle of Port wine.

    This whole comment thread is a joke.

  • “When Chris Wallace posed the question more directly, “At this point you are a NO vote in the Senate?” Lieberman responded, “If the public option plan is in there, as a matter conscience I will not allow this bill to come to a final vote,” relaying his concern over our country’s mounting 12 trillion dollar debt, “I believe the debt can break America…”


    Lieberman was the head Democratic cheerleader for the War of Choice in Iraq:

    “Overthrowing Saddam was right, and we can’t abandon Iraq now. (Jul 2006)

    Getting out too soon will be a disaster for Iraq and for us. (Jul 2006)

    Saddam’s overthrow caused Libya & Iran to capitulate. (Jan 2004)

    We made the right decision to send soldiers to Iraq. (Jan 2004)

    Iraq victory opens door to Israeli-Palestinian peace. (Jan 2004)

    US and world are safer with homicidal maniac Saddam gone. (Jan 2004)

    Stabilize Iraq before pulling out the troops. (Dec 2003)

    $87B for Iraq was unpopular, but that’s leadership. (Nov 2003)

    $87B to never leave American troops without support. (Sep 2003)

    Not an inch of difference from Bush on Iraq. (Sep 2003)

    Purpose of war is to let Iraqis control Iraq. (Sep 2003)

    Send more US troops to Iraq, with UN force. (Sep 2003)

    Iraq was a heroic struggle against enemies of civilization. (Sep 2003)

    Saddam was a threat; we did the right thing by invading. (May 2003)”

    And how much is this NEEDLESS, WAR OF CHOICE in Iraq costing us?

    “All told, the bill for the Iraq war is likely to top $3 trillion. And that’s a conservative estimate.

    President Bush tried to sell the American people on the idea that we could have a war with little or no economic sacrifice. Even after the United States went to war, Bush and Congress cut taxes, especially on the rich — even though the United States already had a massive deficit. So the war had to be funded by more borrowing.”

    So Lieberman, and OTHERS, have prioritized that invading and occupying a middle-eastern country that NEVER attacked us, or had the capacity to threaten us is more valuable than providing health care for American citizens who CAN’T GET IT.

    Lack of health insurance results in the deaths of nearly 45,000 Americans every year.Reuters

    That adds up to a STAGGERING figure of approximately:

    360,000 DEAD AMERICANS since 9/11/2001.

    The math is clear, and indisputable. Lack of health insurance is the REAL Weapon of Mass Destruction that threatens America, yet Sen. Lieberman and OTHERS feel that a needless Iraq War at THREE TIMES THE COST is not only affordable, but money better spent.


  • Cobra presents a long, long comment to cry over spilt milk – or rather spilt money – whining like a four year old that his chocolate milk not only spilled out of his glass but went down a drain as well, the drain of Iraq and Afghanistan.

    There is not gainsaying that the money was spilt, and that a really large part of that money was wasted (one needs to consider the likely cost of truly suppressing terrorism in the Middle East – an action that would have entailed overthrowing the ibn-Sauds in Arabia and returning the country to its rightful ruler, Abdallah II of what is now Jordan – so not ALL of the $3 trillion spent in the last 6 years would have been unspent). But the fact remains that the money was still spilt, and most of it stupidly wasted in Mesopotomia.

    It is irrelevant to blame the Bush family for doing so, even though they did so waste your money in the Tigris and the Euphrates Rivers 20 hours to my east.

    This does not mean that you Americans can afford universal health care; from the point of view of prudent financial management (socialist that I am, I’m still a cranky fiscal conservative), when it comes to universal health care, you are still like bums looking at a fancy clothing shop & drooling over that $1,500 Armani suit that looks so good – and trying to scrape together enough money to buy rubby-dub. The Armani suit – and the $1,500 – is a fantasy.

    It’s not that universal health care is bad – the opposite, it is the right and intelligent thing to do – it is, that no matter how right and intelligent it is, you cannot afford it. That is the bottom line here. Joe Lieberman, the public option, the money wasted in Mesopotamia, the Pelosi plan, the abortion amendment – all of it – are just smoke and mirrors, a pile of bullshit, to keep you from realizing that you are about to go broke altogether, and are now dependent on the good will of your creditors, the commie Chinese (guess where Obama is?), the Arabs who supply you with oil, and on the good will of trading partners who will continue to prop up and take your phony money as long as they can because they haven’t figured out a way to do without you – yet. When they do – or when the pressure to dump dollars becomes irresistible – you are toast.

  • Ruvy, thanks for the encouragement. Just remember this..I am pro-Israel, would love to see it sometime. Shalom

  • Thank you for the kind words, Christine – evkharistó! If you do ever make it here, give me a holler and I can escort you and yours to a number of interesting places here, places that the average tour guide will not show you.

  • Ruvy: Sounds like a plan.

  • Christine writes:

    “Ruvy, thanks for the encouragement. Just remember this..I am pro-Israel, would love to see it sometime. Shalom”

    Let me ask YOU a question. If you agree with the afforementioned poster that America “cannot afford” a DOMESTIC Policy that would, as Harvard’s study suggests save HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS of AMERICAN LIVES

    …would you agree that America ALSO “cannot afford” a FOREIGN Policy that pours literally TRILLIONS of dollars into the Middle-East?

    Do you prioritize the health, well-being and LIVES of Americans FIRST and BEFORE all others?

    I do.


  • Cobra,

    You do have trouble reading. I didn’t say you were right to waste trillions of dollars in the Tigris and the Euphrates, I said you had – and still are. I also didn’t say your were wrong to want to have universal health care. You aren’t. My priorities for you are the same as yours. But because you wasted (and are still wasting)the money, you no longer afford the health care.

    It’s not an issue of what you want or should do, it’s an issue of what you have done, and can no longer accomplish therefore.

    That’s what limits mean, Cobra. That what living within your means boils down to. And that cold hard reality is what you and millions of other Americans will have to get used to.

  • Clavos

    I would just like to know WHY you think that private insurance corporations like AETNA give a damn about what you or I would like…

    And the government does…(and would know what to do if it did)


  • Oh, just to make this perfectly clear to you all. Wasting trillions of dollars in a war in Iraq because you are afraid of your real enemies was the stupidest thing you could have done – and continue to do. In 1990, throughout the 1990’s and again in 2001, you did not act like a great power. You acted like fools – you are now reaping the reward for the stupidity at the top. Indeed, you have sown a wind (more of a fart) – and are reaping a whirlwind.

  • Cobra writes:

    “I would just like to know WHY you think that private insurance corporations like AETNA give a damn about what you or I would like…”

    Clavos writes:

    “And the government does…(and would know what to do if it did)


    The difference is…unlike private insurance corporations like Aetna, the FIRST priority of local, state and federal governments is NOT making a profit.

    That’s why, Clavos, I bet you still lick and paste a 45 cent US Postal stamp on your birthday card envelopes, instead of shoving it into a flat-rate, UPS mailer for $4.95 (that won’t deliver overseas, or in remote northwestern areas of the continental United States.)

    It’s a service that works to the benefit of the greatest number of American citizens.

    Clavos writes:

    “Both of which are unmitigated disasters and, along with Medicare, living proof that giving the government control of anything, including health care, is a big mistake.”

    More rebellious nonsense. You’re at the right age group, Clavos. Why don’t you get your tea party, “Stop Medicare Now!” signs out and march down to your local Senior Citizens Center, and collect petition signatures of folks who want to give up Medicare.

    Yeah, what a plan!!! And then march them right over to Aetna or Wellpoint and watch how FAST they get denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, and if they DO get covered, how HIGH the premiums will be.

    I bet you reserve your “Abolish Medicare” idioms to the anonymous blogosphere.


    The question in my previous post was directed at you.


  • Sorry Cobra, but I have a real job to attend with. And am not clear as the exact question. Can you repeat? Will be back later this afternoon. Have a great morning.

  • Clavos

    That’s why, Clavos, I bet you still lick and paste a 45 cent US Postal stamp on your birthday card envelopes…

    Nope. Like millions of others, I send e-cards, pay and receive my bills online, buy online and have the goods delivered by UPS and FedEx, and even bought my last two cars online.

    All I get by snailmail these days is junk mail, which gets thrown out without being read.

    I worked at the USPS. I KNOW how inefficient and archaic they are. I also know they will lose $7 billion, with a B this year.

    I’ve also had the misfortune to have had to deal with Medicare on a nearly daily basis for more than four years; I KNOW how inefficient and inept they are as well.

  • One certainly hopes the Dems have the cojones to strip Lieberman of his Homeland Security Committee chairmanship. What a destructive egomaniac he is.

    Christine, certainly there are people who agree with your position and were as angry as the buffoons shown on TV at town hall meetings in August. Your mistake is assuming they represent a majority. They are a loud but not so enormous group.

    Cobra is correct: presented with the idea of a government-run insurance option, a surprisingly large majority of Americans like the idea. What makes them nervous is hearing about additional huge expenditures.

    And a lot of folks believe the bill will help others — but not themselves. This may be a polite way of expressing a bigotry toward the poor.

    Finally, any article that refers approvingly to the discredited fame-seeker known [falsely] as Joe the Plumber [his name isn’t Joe, and he isn’t a plumber] opens itself up to questions about its credibility and seriousness.

  • Handy, I see you points, the Joe thing did point out that “redistribution of wealth” is wrong to many people as is government takeover of health insurance. And there are health programs that help the poor, it is called medicaid. Maybe if the government just lowered the level of what is “considered poverty”, we could insure another 5 million plus!

  • Roger B

    $7billion seems like chump change these days.

    Doesn’t Blackwater cheat that much out of the DoD every year?

  • Christine,

    Sen. Lieberman and the Poster who makes Anti-American statements you thank on this blog thread, claim that America cannot afford a public health care option that would, as studies show, save HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS of American lives.

    Simple question #1.

    Do you agree with THEM, that we cannot afford a public health insurance option, which would provide life-saving health care to save American lives?

    Simple question #2.

    Do you agree with Sen. Lieberman when he supports (CAN afford) Middle Eastern Foreign Policies that cost over THREE TIMES AS MUCH as a public health care option would, in the form of wars, lopsided trade agreements and foreign aid?


  • 11/23/09 on ObamaCare…

    Just 38% of voters now favor the health care plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats. That’s the lowest level of support measured for the plan in nearly two dozen tracking polls conducted since June.

    The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 56% now oppose the plan.

  • So what? Republicans like GW act proud of the fact that they lead and don’t rely on polls

  • When the hell will the anti-Obama faction give it up and stop using buzz words to instill fear into the populous over this entire health care debate? I am so damned sick and tired of the scare tactics and covert racism going on in this country. We need health care reform. The system, as it stands, is a complete failure. Health care should NOT be a for profit enterprise. We’ve lost our way, folks., And while those on the right think that they are preserving our so called freedoms, the Republican politicians are getting pretty damned rich at our expense via PAC monies.

    When I saw that the Catholic Church actually pays lobbyists to influence members of Congress I damn near popped a blood vessel. Oh you good Catholics. Your weekly tithes are going to pay off politicians. Imagine that. No more tax breaks for religious organizations — they can go to hell. Catholic priests and Baptist ministers are no better than the money changers at the tables in the Temple.

    My friends, there are two issues which transcend the issues we’re discussing today. The first is campaign finance reform and the second is TERM LIMITS. Until we reign in these corrupt, misguided pigs who become whores of Washington upon inauguration, we’re never going to achieve anything positive.

    And, for the record, if there were an election held today, I would not be voting for Mr. Obama. He’s become a complete disappointment. As every day of this Administration continues, I am less hopeful that he will achieve what he is capable of achieving. We’ve been duped once again, folks.

  • Doesn’t Blackwater cheat that much out of the DoD every year?

    But Blackwater is a Christian company doing the work of Jesus. Therefore it is perfectly acceptable for the United States government to bestow tithes upon them. Blackwater personnel perform an admirable service on behalf of Christ. These Christian crusaders are America’s best hope of eradicating the Muslim infidels from the Judeo-Christian Middle East. We must supports our fellow Americans who are living martyrs for the Christian cause. God Bless America, especially Blackwater and its’ management.

  • Marilyn Regan

    Please do not vote for any health care reform because it will ultimately lead to universal health care and we cannot afford this and health care will be destroyed.