ABC News is reporting that on page 432 of Senator Reid’s health care bill, there is a section increasing federal Medicaid subsidies for “certain states recovering from a major disaster.” The section spends two pages defining which “states” would qualify, saying that it would be states that “during the preceding 7 fiscal years” have been declared a “major disaster area.” That language applies to exactly one state: Louisiana.

According to the CBO, those subsidies will cost about $100 million. The bill cannot pass without Senator Landrieu’s support, and Reid is bribing her with $100 million in Federal money to get her vote. This should be ILLEGAL!

Below is the complicated language in the bill. All of it could have been cut down to a few words: “Extra federal funds allocated to the State of Louisiana to BRIBE Senator Mary Landrieu to vote for this bill”.

SEC. 2006. SPECIAL ADJUSTMENT TO FMAP DETERMINATION FOR CERTAIN STATES RECOVERING FROM A MAJOR DISASTER.

Section 1905 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396d), as amended by sections 2001(a)(3) and
2001(b)(2), is amended— (1) in subsection (b), in the first sentence, by striking ‘‘subsection (y)’’ and inserting ‘‘subsections (y) and (aa)’’; and (2) by adding at the end the following new subsection:

‘‘(aa)(1) Notwithstanding subsection (b), beginning January 1, 2011, the Federal medical assistance percentage for a fiscal year for a disaster-recovery FMAP adjustment State shall be equal to the following:
‘(A) In the case of the first fiscal year (or part of a fiscal year) for which this subsection applies to the State, the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the fiscal year without regard to this subsection and subsection (y), increased by 50 percent of the number of percentage points by which the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the fiscal year without regard to this subsection and subsection (y), is less than the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the preceding fiscal year after the application of only subsection (a) of section 5001 of Public Law 111–5 (if applicable to the preceding fiscal year) and without regard to this subsection, subsection (y), and subsections (b) and (c) of section 5001 of Public Law 111–5.

‘‘(B) In the case of the second or any succeeding fiscal year for which this subsection applies to the State, the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the preceding fiscal year under this subsection for the State, increased by 25 percent of the number of percentage points by which the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the fiscal year without regard to this subsection and subsection (y), is less than the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the preceding fiscal year under this subsection.

‘‘(2) In this subsection, the term ‘disaster-recovery FMAP adjustment State’ means a State that is one of
the 50 States or the District of Columbia, for which, at any time during the preceding 7 fiscal years, the President has declared a major disaster under section 401 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act and determined as a result of such disaster that every county or parish in the State warrant individual and public assistance or public assistance from the Federal Government under such Act and for which— ‘‘(A) in the case of the first fiscal year (or part of a fiscal year) for which this subsection applies to the State, the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the fiscal year without regard to this subsection and subsection (y), is less than the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the preceding fiscal year after the application of only subsection (a) of section 5001 of Public Law 111–5 (if applicable to the preceding fiscal year) and without regard to this subsection, subsection (y), and subsections (b) and (c) of section 5001 of Public Law 111–5, by at least 3 percentage points; and ‘‘(B) in the case of the second or any succeeding fiscal year for which this subsection applies to the State, the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the fiscal year without regard to this subsection and subsection (y), is less than the Federal medical assistance percentage determined for the State for the preceding fiscal year under this subsection by at least 3 percentage points.

‘‘(3) The Federal medical assistance percentage determined for a disaster-recovery FMAP adjustment State under paragraph (1) shall apply for purposes of this title (other than with respect to disproportionate share hospital payments described in section 1923 and payments under this title that are based on the enhanced FMAP described in 2105(b)) and shall not apply with respect to payments under title IV (other than under part E of title IV) or payments under title XXI.’’.

Harry Reid is said to be planning to force the health care bill through the Senate using the “nuclear option” of Reconciliation.

The Nevada Democrat, who has issued similar threats before, spoke as the Senate Finance Committee began debate over Chairman Max Baucus’ reform plan. Reid threatened to use a budgetary tool called reconciliation — also known as the “nuclear option” — that would allow Democrats to pass key parts of the legislation with a simple majority, as opposed to the 60 votes needed to avoid a Republican filibuster.  “If we can’t work this out to do something within the committee structure, then we’ll be forced to do the reconciliation,” Reid said, adding that he views that as a “last resort.”

Newt points out that the original purpose of the US Senate was to force a slower deliberative process to occur that dampened a majority controlled House Of Representatives:

The Founding Fathers designed the Constitution and our government to guard against political power grabs by slowing down the process of making laws…. They insisted that the Senate had to be a deliberative body to slow down the passions of the House and stop mob rule from destroying freedom…. In a famous conversation between the two presidents, Thomas Jefferson is said to have asked George Washington why the Framers had agreed to a second chamber in Congress at the 1787 Constitutional Convention. “Why did you pour that coffee into your saucer?” Washington asked him. “To cool it,” said Jefferson. “Even so,” said Washington, “we pour legislation into the senatorial saucer to cool it.

Newt also points out that Democrat Senator Robert Byrd helped craft the rules allowing for Reconciliation to avoid stalemates in the budgetary process – but not for issues like health care and has strongly urged his colleagues to refrain from using reconciliation to force health care legislation through the Senate:

“Using the budget reconciliation process to pass health reform and climate change legislation…would violate the intent and spirit of the budget process, and do serious injury to the constitutional role of the Senate.”

Once this nuclear option is unleashed, there is no taking it back.  The Democrats better consolidate power into their dream dictatorship because if they ever lose control of both houses again, the collateral damage from the explosion they set off now could be truly be frightening. We predict that the new role of the Senate as dispenser of vengeance on the opposition party will be terrible to behold.