House Speaker John Boehner indicated he would probably give up the fight against Obamacare, saying it "is the law of the land."
In a November 8 interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC News, Boehner was asked, "You have said that you would repeal the health care law. That's still your mission?"
The Speaker essentially surrendered, saying:
BOEHNER: Well, I think the election changes that. It's pretty clear that the President was re-elected. Obamacare is the law of the land. I think there are parts of the health care law that are going to be very difficult to implement. And very expensive. And as the time when we're trying to find a way to create a path toward a balanced budget, everything has to be on the table.
SAWYER: But you won't be spending the time next year trying to repeal Obamacare?
BOEHNER: There certainly may be parts of it that we believe need to be changed. We may do that. No decisions at this point.
Michael O'Brien of NBC News commented, "The Speaker's pronouncement, if nothing else, signifies a pivot away from Republicans' efforts to showcase for conservatives their doggedness in looking to repeal Obamacare. It's also a recognition that the 2009-2010 health care law that came to define Obama's first term in office--and propel Republicans to a majority in the House--is here to stay."
Later that day, Kevin Smith, the Speaker's communications director, attempted to amend Boehner's comments somewhat, saying the issue of Obamacare "would be on the table."
Why Boehner would give up now is hard to understand. If he's discouraged by the election results, he shouldn't be.
Americans voted to keep Republicans in control of the House of Representatives, Democrats in control of the Senate, and Barack Obama in control of the White House.
This outcome was predicted in the last issue of this newsletter.
Votes are still being counted in some states, but the New York Times reported the results so far are:
60,662,174 Obama 303 electoral votes
57,820,742 Romney 206 electoral votes
Strangely, Florida has not yet been called for either candidate. With 100% of the vote counted, the results were:
The New York Times explained, "Though The Associated Press reported that 100 percent of the precincts had reported, election workers in some counties were still counting provisional and absentee ballots."
Nevertheless, it seems inconceivable that Obama's lead of 47,016 could be overcome. If Florida's 29 electoral votes are awarded to Obama, that would bring his total to 332.
By comparison, Wikipedia listed the final results of the 2008 election:
69,498,215 Obama 365 electoral votes
59,948,240 McCain 173 electoral votes
Interestingly, 10,963,539 less votes were cast this year than in 2008, although that figure will shrink a little as more votes are counted and added to the total.
In the House, Politico reports that Democrats are on track to gain 7 seats, including 10 races that remain uncalled. Democrats are ahead in 8 of them, while Republicans lead in 2. Democrats fell far short of the 25 seats they needed to re-gain the majority.
The American Hospital Association (AHA) and four hospital systems have joined together to sue the Obama Administration for denying payments for admitting Medicare patients to hospitals.
This is part of the rationing of health care for seniors that was mandated by Obamacare. The last issue of this newsletter described how the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) in Obamacare is poised to ration care for Medicare recipients.
The Obama Administration has now found additional ways to ration care. The Hill explained:
At issue are government auditors who judge whether hospitals should have admitted Medicare patients or arranged their care on an outpatient basis.
If an auditor decides that a hospital did not need to admit a Medicare patient, the hospital must return the money it received for that patient's care.
The AHA asked the court to overrule this policy and return money to hospitals.
"Doctors and nurses provide the best care possible using their medical judgment and training," Rich Umbdenstock, president of the AHA, said. "Allowing government auditors to second-guess these difficult medical decisions about where to best treat a patient years later based on a cold record and then refuse to pay for that care is indefensible."
The issue of Obamacare appears to have hurt President Obama and Democratic candidates for Congress in Florida and other states with high concentrations of seniors.
The election results may produce a split decision between Republicans and Democrats in races for the House, Senate, and President.
Analysts agree the GOP will maintain majority control of the House with almost the identical margin it currently has over the Democrats.
In the Senate, it looks like Democrats will maintain their majority with about the same margin they now have over the Republicans. There are a number of Senate seats that are close, but polls show the GOP candidate trailing in most of these races.
The presidential race has a plethora of competing polls both nationally and in the battleground states. When averaged together, there is an exact tie in the popular vote between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.
Obama looks to be the narrow winner in the Electoral College vote.
But there are still days to go before the election and even very minor shifts in key states could significantly change the Electoral College vote totals for each candidate.
In the 435-member House, 218 seats constitute a majority. Currently, Republicans have 242 seats to 193 for the Democrats.
Real Clear Politics says Republicans are leading in 226, Democrats are leading in 183, and there are 26 races that are rated as toss-ups.
The Rothenberg Political Report (compiled by Stuart Rothenberg, pictured) projects Democrats to have a net gain of between 2 and 8 House seats.
The Cook Political Report projects a Democratic gain of between zero and 10 seats in the House.
Dr. Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball predicts a net gain of exactly 4 House seats for the Democrats.
In the 100-member Senate, there are 33 seats up for election this year--23 Democrats (including 2 independents who caucus with the Democrats) and 10 Republicans.
Real Clear Politics sees Democrats ahead in 16 races, Republicans ahead in 6, and 11 toss-ups. In the 11 toss-up races, Democrats are leading in 6 races, Republicans in 5. If those results hold, Democrats will win 22 races, Republicans 11. As a net result, Republicans would end up with 48 seats, the Democrats 52--a net gain of 1 for the GOP.
The Open Enrollment for Medicare began on October 15 and goes through December 7.
Ann Carns of the New York Times writes:
Many of the elderly with Medicare do not realize it, but their health coverage has an annual open enrollment period, just as employer-based health insurance plans do. During this period, they can change their coverage options if they choose.
Seniors who are satisfied with their current plans do not need to do anything. However, since some of the plans may change for 2013, it is a good idea to review all of the available options.
Medicare has a Plan Finder website at
that allows seniors to conduct both a general and personalized search for plans in their particular location.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has also produced a 140-page online booklet, Medicare and You 2013, which contains detailed information about Open Enrollment.
The booklet begins with a joint letter from the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, and the Acting Administrator of CMS, Marilyn Tavenner, containing Obamacare propaganda in a transparent effort to try to help the President in his re-election campaign. The letter states in part:
We're excited to continue implementing the new Medicare benefits provided to you under the 2010 Affordable Care Act.
There's a lot of information about this law in the news including many new opportunities for all Americans to compare plans and get affordable health care coverage. Be assured that you'll still have access to all of your guaranteed Medicare benefits. In fact, this important piece of legislation extends the life of the Medicare program and offers you real benefits.
As reported in previous issues of this newsletter, the Obama Administration has engaged in a steady stream of propaganda, at taxpayers' expense, to try to convince the public in general, and seniors in particular, that President's health care law is beneficial to them.
1. The New York Times reported that 59.2 million people watched the final TV debate on October 22 between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, which was moderated by Bob Schieffer of CBS News.
The second presidential debate on October 17, moderated by Candy Crowley of CNN, drew an audience of 65.6 million.
The vice presidential debate on October 11 between Paul Ryan and Joe Biden, moderated by Martha Raddatz of ABC News, was seen by 51.4 million.
The first presidential debate on October 3, moderated by Jim Lehrer of PBS, had the most viewers--67.2 million people.
Romney's overwhelming victory in the first debate may have inspired Crowley to try to make up ground by overtly helping Obama in the following debate. As the last issue of this newsletter mentioned, the President had 4 minutes and 18 seconds longer to make his points than did the former Massachusetts governor. And Crowley frequently cut off Romney when he attempted to counter accusations from Obama.
Is there anyone--Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal--who doubts that Candy Crowley is an Obama supporter?
An online poll conducted by ConservativeHQ.com found that 93% of respondents gave Crowley an F for her actions in the debate. 2% awarded her a D and 1% said she deserved a C. Not one person gave her an A or B grade, while 3% said they did not watch the debate.
A new study that claims 59% of Medicare beneficiaries -- or about 25 million seniors -- would pay more for Medicare under a premium support reform plan (like that proposed by Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan) was exposed as having serious flaws.
The left-leaning Kaiser Family Foundation recently released a study of the Ryan-Wyden Medicare reform plan called: Transforming Medicare into a Premium Support System: Implications for Beneficiary Premiums.
According to the study's methodology, most seniors now receiving Medicare benefits will face premium hikes higher than they could expect under the current government-run Medicare system.
However, since current Medicare beneficiaries -- or anyone over the age of 55 -- will not participate in the premium subsidy program, the effect on these Medicare recipients is moot. They will pay for traditional Medicare (and all premium increases) with or without the Ryan premium subsidy plan.
At the same time, those under age 55 will still be allowed to purchase traditional Medicare health insurance, so if private health insurance plans are far more expensive in the future, seniors could still take the traditional Medicare route.
The headline number in the study assumes only one quarter of seniors will choose health care plans that are less expensive. When the authors give premium support private healthcare plans a 5% reduction in cost versus traditional Medicare, they find that the number of seniors left with premium increases drops to 35%.
The Kaiser study authors use 5% as a limit on the savings that private health care plans could achieve. However, real world data exists to make better estimates.
Preliminary surveys and focus groups suggest the second presidential debate did not change the campaign, which showed Mitt Romney leading Barack Obama 51% to 45%, according to the latest Gallup Poll of likely voters.
ConservativeHQ.com's Jeffrey Rendall called the debate a "split decision," which "probably did little to alter the balance of the race."
A CNN poll of registered voters found that 46% thought Obama won, while 39% said Romney won.
A CBS poll of undecided voters found that 37% thought Obama won, 30% said Romney won, and 33% called it a tie. But on the overwhelmingly salient issue of the economy, Romney was judged better 65% to 34%.
Another way of looking at it is that 63% of the undecided voters thought Obama did not win the debate. That's very close to the 65% who thought Romney won the debate on economic issues.
These poll results were confirmed by several focus groups.
Real Clear Politics reported that a focus group conducted by Frank Luntz (pictured) for Fox News found former Obama voters switching to Romney. After watching the debate, those in the focus group described Romney as "forceful, compassionate, presidential, confident, realistic, enthusiastic."
A different focus group by MSNBC was also covered by Real Clear Politics. It found the participants were more impressed with Romney than Obama.
And the Washington Post's Jennifer Rubin wrote that still another focus group in Ohio found undecided voters "moved in Romney's direction."
To his credit, Obama didn't claim he won the debate. Amie Parnes of The Hill reported that the President said he was "still trying to figure out how to get the hang of this thing. But we're working on it."
Longtime conservative leader Richard Viguerie has created a new way for seniors and other concerned Americans to have a profound effect on the 2012 elections.
In a new article at ConservativeHQ.com, Viguerie explains how seniors can send hard-hitting email ads to thousands of independent senior voters in key battleground states on issues like Medicare or health care rationing.
As effective as direct mail, talk radio and Fox News were in fueling the rise of the conservative movement, the media channel that has really empowered grassroots conservatives and Tea Party movement activists is the internet.
The internet makes communicating simple, cheap and immediate.
Over 60% of Americans now get their political news and information online, and the rise of the internet has helped conservatives remove one more establishment filter from the news and information voters will use to make their decision this November.
That is why I've launched a highly targeted email campaign to keep the momentum against Obama going and to help wrap-up the election for Mitt Romney.
Unlike TV and radio ads, where 95% or more of the advertising dollar is spent reaching people who are not registered to vote, kids who are not even old enough to vote, and the 90 percent of the people who have made up their minds, every penny spent on this email campaign hits only the target audience -- the Independent/Undecided voters in the 13 battleground swing states.
You can read the full article here.
1. ConservativeHQ.com Chairman Richard A. Viguerie announced a new video exposing Democratic Party voter fraud.
The video, shot by the citizen journalists of James O'Keefe's (pictured) Project Veritas, has exclusive footage of President Obama's Organizing for America campaign facilitating voter fraud at Obama headquarters in Houston, Texas, where an employee of the Democratic National Committee, Stephanie Cabalerro, was taped knowingly providing an absentee ballot application to assist double voting for Obama in Texas and Florida.
The actual video is online at https://www.theprojectveritas.com/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=125
In the video, Cabalerro says of double voting, "Oh my God, this is so funny. It's cool, though."
When discussing the possibility of getting caught, she says, "If anyone checks, say 'I don’t know'."
Viguerie said, "The Democratic Party's love affair with voter fraud isn't confined to Texas."
Project Veritas visited Organizing for America tables and headquarters around the country, where the answer, "It's OK" to double vote was regularly heard in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. In one segment, when a voter says he wants to vote twice, he's told to take as many voter registration forms as he likes.
In a statement, Project Veritas indicated it "will demonstrate that this attitude of callous disregard for the law runs rampant through the campaign to re-elect President Obama."