RUSH: Mrs. Clinton unveiled the details of her health care plan yesterday. But before we get to Mrs. Clinton’s plan, I have an interesting comment here from the director of the Health and Human Services Department, Mike Leavitt. Mike Leavitt, the secretary of Health and Human Services, said that the president is going to veto the SCHIP plan, the new additions to the children’s health care program, which is good, which is fine and dandy. He’s going to do that, but at the same time the president is going to urge Congress to join him in seeking coverage for all Americans. This is not how you do this. This is not how you preempt the Democrats. Leavitt said the president wants to leave office with a plan in place to cover every American insurance-wise. We go through the numbers here. They claim ’47 million uninsured.’ For these people proposing all these health care plans, I have a question, a serious question. Are they running to lead the country, or are they running to destroy it? We hear Ubama go on and on and on about how Wall Street’s gotta take care of the middle class. The middle class is dying out there. Robert B. Reichhhhhh-uh says ‘super capitalism’ is unfair and it’s destroying freedom. It is the exact opposite.
We’ve got every Democrat presidential candidate proposing massive, universal health care programs. What are they trying to do, lead the country or destroy it? When I say destroy it, I mean destroy it as it exists and remake it as they would like it: with a top-heavy government that’s in charge of as much as they can get, in charge of in terms of individual liberties and freedoms and so forth. Now we’ve got the secretary of Health and Human Services out there saying the president wants Congress to join him in seeking coverage for all Americans. ‘Leavitt said that he’d like to see the larger debate begin; the very best opportunity we have may well be in the next 15 months.’ Now, I don’t know if this is a campaign strategy to take the momentum away from the Democrats on this, but… I’m going to have to hear more about it. This is not the president speaking. This is the Health and Human Services director, and I want to wait ’til I actually hear the president say that, because that’s something that… Well, it’s just frightening.
Now, let’s take a look at some of the details of Mrs. Clinton’s plan. One of the Cato Institute scholars, their director of health and welfare studies at Cato (which is a Libertarian think tank), Michael D. Tanner, has examined her proposal in detail and finds the four of the worst features of her proposal.
The first one is an ‘individual mandate,’ and this is sort of like the Breck Girl’s. ‘Senator Clinton would require every American to purchase health insurance or face penalties.’ Now, you might be saying, ‘Well, they do that with auto insurance, Rush.’ The states do that, folks. The states can do it. But you don’t have to buy insurance if you don’t drive on state roads. If you have a big estate or a big farm and you want to go out and buy a car and you only drive it on your property, you do not have to get it insured. But these are state laws, and that’s fine if the states want to mandate or require this. But the federal government doing this kind of thing is totally against the US Constitution. You can read the Constitution front-to-back, and you will find the power to do this nowhere. You will find nothing anywhere in the Constitution that empowers the federal government to impose this kind of mandate — and then penalties to boot! We just had the story out of Great Britain the other day. A guy has a broken ankle and they’re not going to fix it ’til he quits smoking. He says he’s tried and he can’t quit, and they’re not going to fix it. Hello? This is the kind of thing we’re headed for. All of liberalism is about dictating behavior and finding ways to make sure you have to comply.
So if they don’t want you smoking — which is absurd, because they’re using cigarette taxes to fund all these health care programs — somebody’s going to have to smoke! Somebody’s going to have to buy the cigarettes, and you had better damn well make sure there’s a place they can smoke them after they buy them or the whole thing is going to come crashing down. Of course it will crash down, and all of you people laughing and guffawing about the smokers’ taxes going up, going ‘Yeah! Yeah, make ’em pay! Make ’em pay! It’s a filthy, rotten, dirty habit.’ Well, if you don’t let ’em smoke ’em anywhere, they’re not going to buy ’em. If you tax ’em so high that the price becomes more expensive than gasoline, they’re not going to buy ’em, and then what are you going to do for your tax revenue? All you people out there laughing at the tax increase being shoveled onto who you think is just one small group of people, guess where the taxes are going to be levied? Because they’re not going to get rid of the program. They’re going to come right to the rest of us to pick up the revenue that the smokers are no longer providing, which I think is the plan anyway. This is how liberals do this.
A lot of politicians who are in favor of tax increases just pick a group of people that the rest of the population despises. Tax child abusers, tax sexual deviants, tax smokers, tax people that consume adult beverages. ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah! These are moral reprobates. Tax them.’ Yeah, that’s how it works. They establish the notion of tax increase, and you’ll accept it, because you think it’s penalizing someone else. Well, your turn to be penalized is going to eventually come because with liberals everybody’s going to get penalized. Mark my words. So we’re going to have an individual mandate. Every American will be ‘required to purchase health insurance or face penalties.’ Of course, do I need to spell out the problems with this for you? This will restrict individual choice. It will restrict liberty. It will require a massive new bureaucracy to enforce. How are they going to enforce this? You know, right now if you don’t have health insurance and you show up at the emergency room, federal law requires you get covered. You get treated. If, after this plan were to be enacted, and you are required to have insurance and don’t, and you show up at the emergency room, what happens? Well, there are going to be penalties! What’s going to happen? Are you not going to be treated? Are they going to leave you on the floor there while other people who have followed the government-run edicts get treated before you do? You want a mess? The regulatory mess that this is going to create will result in even more government control because the original set of regulations naturally won’t encompass everything. ‘Ooooh! Yep, we forgot. We gotta add this to that,’ and so forth.
The second thing that Cato found among the worst features of Hillary’s proposal is employer mandates. ‘Sen. Clinton would impose a ‘play or pay’ mandate on American businesses, requiring them to provide workers with health insurance or pay an additional tax into a government insurance fund.’ Hello, state of Maryland! They tried to do this, and a federal judge threw it out as unconstitutional. But it’s in Mrs. Clinton’s plan. ‘Such a mandate simply increases the cost of hiring workers, meaning employers will inevitably hire fewer workers. Some may even be forced to layoff current employees,’ in order to meet this mandate of providing cradle-to-grave health insurance for the employee and his family and his barmaids and mistresses.
Also, expanding government programs: ‘Sen. Clinton would expand the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to provide benefits for middle-class families,’ all the way up to incomes of $82,000 a year. ‘Children’ are defined as 25 years or under in age. ‘Insurance regulation: Senator Clinton would require insurance companies to accept all applicants regardless of their health, and would impose ‘community rating’ on health insurance premiums. As a result, the young and healthy [would obviously] be forced to pay more in order to subsidize the older and sicker.’ If you walk in and you don’t have insurance and you’re required to go get it and they’re required to sell it to you, and you’re a risk to kick the bucket any time soon, the premium is going to be sky high, because they’re going to have to pay off at some point all your care. Guess who’s going to be paying that? Everybody else! So Mrs. Clinton is trusting Big Government. Remember, she just had a big photo-op about a month ago where she spent a day with a nurse in a hospital. They asked her, ‘Why were you doing this?’
‘Well, I wanted to find out what nurses go through.’
Wait a minute! I thought you were a health care expert? Well, I’m not wrong. It is government health care. Here’s a neat trick, too, that Mrs. Clinton is doing. Mrs. Clinton learned something. That last health care plan was 2100 pages, or 1200 pages, something like that. This is just going to be a ‘blueprint.’ She’s going to let congressional committees fill in the details, which means — what wacko in the Senate runs that committee? I know in the House it’s John Dingell that would be in charge of it. Who runs the health committee in the Senate? That’s right, it’s Kennedy’s committee! So Teddy Kennedy would be plugging in the details. That’s what she says, and that’s to keep the heat off of her, when this happened. As I mentioned, folks, if you get out the Constitution and you look at it, you will not find where it outlines, or experiments, or specifies the federal government is granted the power to force citizens to buy anything, let alone a health insurance policy. Now, I can’t find it in my Constitution. There’s nothing in there that says it. In fact, the whole Constitution was written to limit the power of the federal government, and now we supposedly can find a way in there that the federal government can make you buy anything. Once you let them tell you that you have to buy health insurance, what the hell else are they going to then tell you you have to buy once the precedent is set?
If you look at the Constitution, you will find that the federal government can only take actions specifically authorized by the Constitution. All those other powers are reserved for the states, for the people. You know, there’s a guy who sued God the other day. Some Nebraska guy sued God to illustrate that lawsuits are out of control. Anybody can sue anybody. Maybe we can sue God over this, if it comes to it, but here’s the thing: What if we refuse, for example, to exercise? Let’s say that one of the mandates is we have to exercise and we have to be healthy out there. What if we refuse? I, for one, will say, ‘Screw it! The federal government cannot make me exercise. I’m not going to do it.’ What’s the penalty to me? Take my health care away? By the way, I don’t even want to get into an insurance program. I don’t even want to do it. Do I have a chance not to? Can I buy my own health care coverage as I need it? Not coverage, but my treatment? Can I pay for it as I need it? What if I don’t want it? What’s my penalty here? If we don’t exercise, will Hillary send jackbooted thugs in to march us around for 30 minutes every day inside our backyards or homes, or better yet, have to go to a government-run gym to work out? She’s quoted today — I kid you not, Mrs. Clinton is quoted today — as being upset that men do not wash their hands. Well, if she’s upset that men don’t wash their hands, can you imagine how livid she’s going to be if we refuse to exercise? You add that on it. The ads that could destroy this, the TV ads, are just endless. They’re just waiting to be made, and one of the reasons why she’s not getting all that specific is to avoid the Harry and Louise-type ads that ran back in ’93 and ’94.
RUSH: Here’s another thought, ladies and gentlemen, on Mrs. Clinton’s socialized medicine presentation. I just mentioned to you that one of the things her proposal features is that an insurance company cannot turn down anyone for an existing condition. Why, then, should anyone apply for insurance until they get sick? If they can’t turn you down, wait ’til you get sick because you’d have to be accepted, preexisting conditions. You’d spend a lot less money. Don’t have anybody get insurance ’til they’re about to die. Now, back to these penalties. What happens if they mandate the purchase of insurance out there. What happens if I don’t? I asked this question mere moments ago: ‘Will I go to jail? If I don’t buy it, will they buy it for me? Will I not get care in an emergency if I don’t buy insurance? And more importantly, will illegal immigrants be forced to buy health insurance as well?’ I’m dead serious about that question. Will they be forced to buy health insurance? Well, the answer will be, ‘Of course not, Rush, because we really don’t know who they are, and we don’t know how to find them.’ Well, then I assume they won’t be covered when they show up. ‘Oh, no, no, no,’ as Hillary said to them — we got the audiotapes coming up — as Hillary said to them, ‘You are the face of America.’ By the way, two or three years ago, she was totally against illegal immigration. Oh, yeah, we got the audio sound bites.
I want to go back to this number: 47 million uninsured. We have 12 to 20 million illegals. In fact, we’re not really sure. The Census Bureau wants all raids to stop in 2010 so that the illegals will show up and say, ‘I’m here,’ because we want an accurate count. They’re estimating we got 12 to 20 million illegals. We’re told the latest number that everybody is bandying about here, 47 million without health care. Wait a minute. Maybe it’s 12 million without health care and 47 million illegals. How do we really know? If you’re a news junky, and many of you are, you know the numbers, 12 million and 47 million, you can probably fill in the blanks. Twelve million is the number of illegal aliens, you are told. Forty-seven million, oh, yeah, piece of cake, that’s number of people without health care, you are told. But, as you know, I’m from Missouri: Show me. All these numbers get bandied about, and nobody is ever required to prove ’em. Remember good old Mitch Schneider, a homeless advocate from back in the eighties, said there were three million homeless. There were never three million homeless, but it became established as the number. I assume all 12 million illegals don’t have health care. What percentage of the 47 million are they? And what percentage of the 47 million don’t want health care because they’re young, can’t afford it, or don’t think they’re going to need it for a while?
RUSH: Another feature of Mrs. Clinton’s health care plan is this, and I want to read it to you from the Washington Post editorial on this today: ‘The most intriguing part of the Clinton plan would limit the tax-deductibility of employer-sponsored health insurance for those making more than $250,000 a year. At that income level, employees would have to pay tax on plans more generous than the standard federal employee health plan.’ Now, what this means to me is that all of a sudden, if you make 250 grand or more, and the health care benefit that you get at work, if it’s better than the federal plan is, then you have to pay tax on that as income, it would be added to your income. All these benefits do not accrue as income, taxable income. I knew this was going to happen. It’s only a matter of time. It’s going to happen to everybody, not just people who make over 250 K. It will start there, but it will eventually dwindle down to everybody else because that’s where the real money is. You can go out there and tax all these people at 250 K up, but that’s not going to give them the money they need. This is frightening stuff, folks. This is really frightening stuff.
Then you go to the New York Times: ‘Senator Barack Obama chastised Wall Street executives yesterday as failing to protect middle-class interests and called for increased federal oversight of credit rating agencies, including a government investigation. In an appearance at Nasdaq offices in Midtown Manhattan, Mr. Obama, a Democratic presidential candidate, praised America’s free-market impulse but lamented what he characterized as its recent toll on the middle class.’ Free market impulse, Senator Ubama, is what has made the middle class better than it has ever been. I cannot tell you how frustrating this is. Go out and create a message of doom and gloom each and every day. Do not report anything that is positive. Do not! It will harm the Democrats in this country if people are happy.
To go out there and tell people in the middle class that the very thing that’s raising their opportunity and their wealth, their overall net worth, is destroying them. Who appointed this guy? Here again, where does Mrs. Clinton come off as the health care expert of all the people in this country? Where does Obama come off as the chief lecturer on capitalism? ‘But, Rush, but, Rush, they’re a presidential candidate.’ I know, and it’s up to people to figure out that they’re frauds. Anybody, Republican, Democrat alike, who comes along and says, ‘We know better how to run this,’ and then the second part of that is, ‘the government will do it,’ for crying out loud, what does the government do now on the domestic side that would recommend to anybody we let ’em take over even more? It’s an amazing thing.
All right, let’s go to the phones and reward people’s patience for waiting. This is Jack in Boston. Nice to have you on the program, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Yeah, Rush, you know, this comparison of the Hillary health care plan to automobile insurance is totally bogus. Automobile insurance is for liability insurance, if you hurt somebody else. But you don’t have to insure your own car or your own safety. It’s purely for liability of hurting others. So they can’t cite automobile insurance as a precedent for Hillary health care.
RUSH: No, but this is how they think. Of course, people are going to maybe not be as sophisticated as you are in understanding it, but the point is that auto insurance is mandated by states, not the federal government.
CALLER: Yes, but even so, the additional argument is, even in that case, it’s only for a liability if you hurt somebody else. They don’t require you to insure your own car or yourself. They couldn’t do that, even on the state level they couldn’t do that, so the analogy breaks down in two respects. One, because it’s states —
RUSH: Wait a minute, now. Do you realize how many people you have just shocked, who think that their insurance is also to insure their car, not just to insure the fact that they might harm somebody else?
RUSH: No, Rush, they can get the insurance for their own car, but what I’m talking about is what the state absolutely requires.
CALLER: The state requires that you have insurance —
RUSH: Right. I just wanted that stipulated.
CALLER: Yeah, right. We’re talking about requirement. And to state the precedent for automobile insurance requirement at any level is no precedent for Hillary health care, because that’s for just liability.
RUSH: Exactly right. So the analogy to Hillary health care would be, you’ve gotta get health care insurance in case somebody comes to your house and you put arsenic in their soup and they get sick.
CALLER: Right, but not if you get sick yourself.
RUSH: Not if you get sick yourself.
CALLER: Big distinction.
RUSH: I know, I’m glad you called, I’m glad you made it, I appreciate that, Jack.