Striking The Last Word

Posted on by Karina

Today, House Republicans brought another bill (HR 1216) to the House floor that does not address jobs and wastes time in a futile attempt to repeal part of the Affordable Care Act. House Democrats are staging a “mini-filibuster” by striking the last word–allowing House Democrats the opportunity to discuss their strong opposition to the Republican-passed budget which ends Medicare as we know it and forces seniors to pay over $6,000 more a year.

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Rob Andrews (D-NJ) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) Strikes The Last Word:

Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA) Strikes The Last Word:

Despite being informed by their constituents over and over again in town halls that Americans oppose their plan, the House Republican response to rejection seems to be a revised communications strategy and more spin:

The GOP message team is already scrambling to redefine the issue as a Republican attempt to “save” Medicare, not kill it…

“We have a message challenge, a big one, and that’s what the polling is showing,” conceded Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.), a former Karl Rove protégé who enthusiastically backed the Ryan plan. [Politico, 5/23]

As Rep. Tim Ryan said on the floor today:

This dismantles the Medicare program. Period. Dot. And at least have the courage to come out and say ‘we want to dismantle the Medicare program.’ And if you want to look at how far to the right that the Republican party has gotten on this issue, I’ve never seen former Speaker Gingrich do a faster or more complete Potomac two-step in my entire life then when he even insinuated that this may not be good for seniors. Because the goal now of the Republican party, Madam Chair, is to dismantle the Medicare program…the Democratic plan is for Medicare. We keep it to cover senior citizens and their health care when they get older.

Republicans can spend their days spinning and pretending they have a “message” problem, but Americans already know the House Republican record:

Passage of legislation to end Medicare, increase health costs for seniors, and put insurance companies in charge

Refusal to hold Big Oil accountable as American families and small businesses face the additional hardship of record gas prices

No jobs bills on the House floor for five months

UPDATE – House Republicans stopped debate:

Rep. Weiner tweet: So they cut off debate so that I couldn't speak. #IAmPlottingMyRevenge

UPDATE 2 – Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) makes his “triumphant return“:

I move to strike the last word Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman, you may recall I was standing here approximately two hours ago waiting to speak with several other members on the efforts of my Republican friends to eliminate Medicare as we know it and for reasons that are known only to the Chair, I was denied the ability to do that. Well, I’m back. And just to review the bidding, here’s where it was before that order was made. We had the Chairman of the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee, a good man, a guy I like, stand down in the well and say, ‘Oh, no’ (and this by the way is someone who is elected by the Republican members to represent them in races all around the country) saying that the Ryan plan wasn’t a plan it was and I’m quoting here, “a construct to develop a plan” and he said the proposal is not a voucher program and then he said it was a one size fits all, that Medicare was draining our economy is what he said. Well, ladies and gentlemen, that might be the rationale for our Republican friends wanting to eliminate Medicare, but none of those things are true. It is not a ‘construct to develop a plan’ it is the proposal of the Republican party of the United States of America to eliminate Medicare as a guaranteed entitlement. If you don’t believe me, go get the book that they wrote, go get the budget that they wrote, go get the bill that they wrote.

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