At one point it seemed like Olympia Snowe was the most important person in the entire health care debate — she had "tremendous leverage," on account of being a RINO a centrist willing to participate in shaping legislation, remember that?
So why didn't she appear on the America's Next Top Health Care Bill show yesterday? Turns out it's a classic case of his communications team says, her communications team says…
White House officials said President Obama had long ago told Snowe he wanted to include her in any public discussion about health care, and was trying to make good on that promise. When he saw that she was not on the list of members chosen by Republican leaders, he had [Rahm] Emanuel call to invite her, and did the same for Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden (Oregon).
But a top aide to Snowe disputed that account on Thursday. "The President never once in all their meetings or discussions ever told Senator Snowe she had an open invite to attend any future health care meetings," John Gentzel, Snowe's communications director, said.
Too bad. Just imagine how different this scene would've been if Sen. Snowe had participated:
Olympia Snowe: I am willing to consider ideas from both sides, if they are good ideas.
Republicans: Shut up, traitor, or we will shame you with more gimmick mail.
Olympia Snowe: Ayuh.
This is what they call "a game changer."
* Coincidentally (or NOT), Olympia Snowe's district was slammed with a massive wind/rain/hail storm last night, and now hundreds of thousands of her constituents are without heat and power. Some of them are even being forced to blog from a coffeeshop with 1990s-speed internet because it is 40 degrees at home and the flooded basement is starting to smell like death. No doubt Barack Obama ordered Rahm Emanuel to do this, too.
Tags: Barack Obama, Democrats, Health Care, Maine, Olympia Snowe, Rahm Emanuel, Republicans
Harry Reid and his Gang of 10, the notorious hitmen who terrorized the Five Points section of New York, have reached agreements on various controversies in the Senate health care bill! Let's review what this means for you, the consumer:
* The public option is "sidelined," but not "killed." Maybe it will just bleed to death on its own, there on the sidelines.
* Older-Americans over the age of 55 could buy in to Medicare, the magic government-run health care plan that is not a government-run health care plan in the minds of angry Older-Americans who hate government-run health care plans.
* "A federal agency, the Office of Personnel Management, would negotiate with insurance companies to offer national health benefit plans, similar to those offered to federal employees." Countdown to Michele Bachmann calling this a plan to make us all work for the federal government: 5, 4, 3…
* In the highly unlikely event that private health insurance companies don't look at all this and immediately lower rates and expand coverage, the government will step in with an insurance plan of its own.
* People will be angry about this: "The Senate rejected a proposal to ban coverage of abortion by health plans that would insure millions of Americans under the Democrats’ bill. The vote was 54 to 45." Only two Republicans, Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, joined the Democrats in rejecting the abortion coverage ban. Don't worry, liberals, these ladies will not be pelted with moose dung when they go home for Christmas — moose droppings are too small to be effective for pelting purposes.
* President Obama is very happy with the Senate's work.
* It remains to be seen what the Congressional Budget Office thinks of the Senate's work.
There, now, don't you feel better for having learned all this? I know I do! That's because I've developed a "health care plan" of my own: Simply drink one (1) shot of whiskey for every health care bullet-point you encounter. If that doesn't work, a tequila shot is 'triggered.' Try it yourself and see! This plan is budget neutral, provided you don't eat too much food.
Tags: Abortion, Harry Reid, Health Care, Michele Bachmann, Olympia Snowe, Senate, Susan Collins
As the only member of the Indecision team who can pronounce the word 'ayuh' correctly, I feel it is my duty to comment on this item:
One week after lending her vote of support to the Senate Finance Committee's health care reform bill, Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, has gained countless column inches of newspaper exposure and at least 115 pounds of rock salt.
[T]he influx of rock salt came as a surprise to the senator's staff, who said they received a bundled UPS shipment of 23 5-pound bags of salt to Snowe's Portland office.
Popular conservative blog RedState sparked the makeshift protest with a post a week ago. In a play on Snowe's name, Erick Erickson, managing editor of the site and author of the post, wrote, "What melts snow? Rock salt," and urged readers to send just that as a sign of disapproval.
Okay, so. Right. Nothing shames a Mainer like receiving 115 pounds of rock salt, for free, in late October. Maybe these folks could "turn up the heat" on Sen. Snowe by sending her a couple tanks of heating oil, while they're at it?
Also, at the risk of being a heartless gimmick-wrecker, you don't put rock salt on snow. Rock salt goes on ice. Snow is dealt with by using shovels, plows and snowblowers… but it could get expensive, mailing these things across the country, and idignation only justifies so much postage.
And a "Blow Snowe" campaign would be going too far, even for RedState.
Tags: Health Care, Maine, Olympia Snowe, Red State
Posted by Elizabeth Erickson
Well, the Snowestorm has begun (see, I can do it, too!). The first signs of public outcry are popping up on the interwebs over Sen. Olympia Snowe's controversial health care reform vote, like this sketchy call to arms from Erick Erickson at Redstate.com…
Olympia Snowe has sold out the country. Having been banished to our world after Aslan chased her out of Narnia, Snowe is intent on corrupting this place too.
So we should melt her.
What melts snow? Rock salt.
I'm going to ship this 5 pound bag of rock salt to her office in Maine. It’s only $3.00. You should join me.
Obviously this is meant as some sort of satire, as everyone knows the White Witch was defeated by Aslan during the battle at the Fords of Beruna when he crushed her into black smoke. Even if she had been "banished," are we really supposed to believe that Mr. Ketterly would have let her use the magic rings to travel between worlds again? Please. I think the learned is lesson.
And p.s., Mr. Man-Who-Stole-My-Last-Name, the only thing that can melt the ever-lasting winter of the Ice Queen Jadis's reign is the coming of Aslan, so even were your metaphor an apt one, Sen. Snowe's nominal support of a watered-down and extremely conservative health care reform bill is here to stay.
For a while.
Providing she stays happy with the changes she now has the influence to make.
Tags: Health Care, Maine, Olympia Snowe, Red State, Senate
Look at the headlines this morning: "Snowe day," "Snowe job," "Snowe storm," "Snowe patrol" — man, it's a good thing the senior senator from Maine isn't named Olympia Publicoption.
Democrats readily acknowledge that Snowe's yes vote gives her tremendous leverage as the Senate bill moves forward, meaning they'll have to continue to address her concerns about affordability and excessive government intrusion into health care.
But will her GOP colleagues punish her for this treason, having her "concerns addressed"?
"The conference certainly wouldn't entertain retribution for an irrelevant vote on an irrelevant proposal," said a Senate GOP aide.
Oh! Okay. My mistake.
Well, that certainly explains why it was so important for all the other Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee to vote no yesterday.
Tags: Health Care, Olympia Snowe, Republicans, Senate