• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Pelosi Bill Slips In $6 Billion Slush Fund

    Last week, Speaker Pelosi and the House leadership introduced their 1,900 page health care monstrosity, H.R. 3962. But they have not taken the bill to the House floor as they prepare yet another version called a “manager’s amendment.”

    This manager’s amendment will sweep in new provisions targeted to specific members of Congress in order to get their support on behalf of some special interest group. These will be a style of earmarks that may be hard to trace back to its source. Some will be undecipherable, directing more favorable Medicare reimbursement to a particular hospital or the new taxes on a medical device manufactured in a particular congressional district will mysteriously be lowered. The same sort of deal-making will occur on the Senate floor. National advocacy groups that insist there should be no profit in health care will need smelling salts by the time the bill is completed.

    One such earmark suddenly appeared in H.R. 3962 in Section 1745, “Nursing Home Supplemental Payment Program.” This provision did not exist when the Committee on Energy and Commerce had completed its work. Section 1745 creates a new $6 billion slush fund with the Medicaid program to dispense to nursing homes.

    This new fund has several unique characteristics that set it apart from the normal operations of Medicaid. First, payments to Medicaid nursing homes are made through states and require a state to match the federal funds. Under this section, there is no state money and the decision as to what facilities will receive the money will be made by Secretary Sebelius (and therefore no state involvement in decision making). Although the legislation provides $1.5 billion for each year in the period 2010-2013, the Secretary could hold the money for 2010 and 2011 and make big lump sum payments in 2012. Second, she does not have to go through any formal rulemaking process to award the funds. Third, her decision is final and is not subject to any type of review. This is important because facilities that receive the money will have a comparative advantage over its competitors. Finally, the Secretary will be required to tell the respective committees of Congress which facilities received the money, but is not obligated to tell anyone else.

    It would be interesting to know who asked for this provision and was powerful enough to get $6 billion when the leadership decided to dump more people into Medicaid as a cost saving maneuver and the bill cuts Medicare payments to nursing homes. If a health care bill is enacted this year, the timing will likely place it around Christmas. Yes, Virginia, apparently there is a Santa Claus.

    Posted in Obamacare [slideshow_deploy]

    7 Responses to Pelosi Bill Slips In $6 Billion Slush Fund

    1. John Lloyd Scharf, S says:

      USPS/IRS Health Care

      If health care is the problem, insurance is not the cause and government is not the answer.

      Of those "50 million," that lack insurance there were 45,000 who died without health care. With health care, 98,000 died FROM health care because of malpractice.

      The question is do we want to trust that largest corporation in the world, the U.S. Government.

      Do not expect house calls anytime soon.

      We have seen how well the government delivers on its promises and its bureaucracies pursue the money without giving us benefits on so many levels. Imagine another organ of the government that only ultimately must listen to the Secretary of the Treasury – another "service" of which is the IRS.

      http://theprogressivecapitalist.blogspot.com/2009

      That blog of mine above has several .pdf connections (HR. 3962 and two summaries, a few videos, and page references for new taxes and other mandates). If you cannot use the link, google "Progressive Capitalist H.R. 3962."

      If you believe the promises of this bill, you have to deal with the lie that it fosters competition with a government option called the "Public Option" and establishes the government as a monopoly making its own rules.

      Don't worry. You'll run out of "rich" soon enough. We have at least a$12 trillion economy of which at least $1.8 trillion is spent on health care. If you read the bill, there are plenty of opportunities to soak the middle class, if you do not mind the 1.6 million made jobless.

    2. Bobbie Jay says:

      Nice comment, John. this is all in the name of redistribution of wealth. In this state, the ones living independently are second class to the welfare recipients getting housing and expenses and food for free as they are employed at the same dollar amount as people living independently. Can't trust any part of this government. They cry for those that can do for themselves (but don't) and put out the ones that always have.

    3. Pingback: Daily Reading… « Truth, Lies and In Between

    4. Diane Moran , Fernda says:

      It has been quit an education to find out just how corupt our government is and has been in the past! I think they all need a pink slip! Put in honest people who will write a bill for the purpose it was needed for and nothing else can be attached! It must be displayed before the people for 72 hours before voting on.

      Also get ride of all the waste and fraud, through the judges out who are not protecting children. Have a national TV debate……..no parties! Everyone has their say 3 times and then we vote! Enforce the laws in place and stop illgeal immigration! Wow was that too easy?

    5. karna godridge, hamp says:

      Yep, it all fits with what you all can read for yourself at http://www.cloward-piven.com. Dig in to all that and the ties to Acorn and our current leaders. That document from 1966 by cloward and piven is what they're striving for. Research it and stay silent no more. Stand up.

    6. disheartened in ny says:

      I agree with you. I did what I could to stop this bill by calling and writing my demo congressman, even while in session saturday and all for nothing. None of these dumbo dems heard a word we were saying nor cared. I don't even think any of this is about redistribution of wealth. I feel the agenda is to control and enslave the people of this country in all aspects of our lives, and that we have had our last presidential election.

    7. John in NC says:

      Does Juanita Broaddrick still own a nursing home?

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×