ALG Warns Senate Majority Leader Reid Not to Invoke Reconciliation on “ObamaCare”

September 1st, 2009, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson today warned Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid not to invoke a process called reconciliation to “ram ObamaCare down the throats of an unwilling populace at the cost of representative, two-party governance.”

“This is the beginning of the end of the time-honored filibuster, and is Reid’s attempt to solidify one-party dictatorial rule in the U.S. Senate for the first time in American history,” Wilson said, adding, “And it’s all designed to stage a complete takeover of the nation’s entire health care system by the slimmest of margins.”

In recent weeks, Reid has threatened to use reconciliation, whereby only 51 votes would be needed to pass the government-run health care proposal.

Wilson credited protesters and concerned citizen efforts nationwide who have called, emailed, wrote letters to, and visited with Congressmen at their offices and town hall meetings for persuading elected officials to vote against the bill. He said public opposition to the bill “has created an insurmountable obstacle to passage as long as Reid doesn’t try to pervert the system.”

According to Rasmussen Reports, 53 percent of voters now oppose the bill. And Barack Obama’s public disapproval has hit the 50 percent mark for the first time in his term.

“Harry Reid doesn’t have the 60 votes needed in the Senate for cloture on the so-called ‘public option,’ and the American people deserve all of the credit,” Wilson said, adding, “And so now, in a desperate gamble, he plans on using the non-germane reconciliation process—which is supposed to be reserved for budget measures—to pass ObamaCare with a simple majority in spite of public backlash to the plan,” Wilson said.

On FOX News Sunday in August, Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) conceded, “The fact of the matter is there are not the votes in the United States Senate for a public option. There never have been. So to continue to chase that rabbit, I think, is just a wasted effort.”

Wilson called the plan “the single largest expansion of entitlement spending since the 1960’s,” pointing to a report by Kaiser Health News stating that the legislation would cost $1.5 trillion over ten years. “It will cost even more than that once private health options begin diminishing and the public is forced into the socialized system, and Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and Barack Obama know it,” Wilson said.

Wilson called it a “tossup” as to whether Reid will actually pursue what some analysts call the “nuclear option,” but said “it looks more likely than not,” pointing to recent statements by Reid’s office.

According to Reid spokesman Jim Manley, “The White House and the Senate Democratic leadership still prefer a bipartisan bill. However, patience is not unlimited, and we are determined to get something done this year by any legislative means necessary.”

“This is just one more dictatorial move by Harry Reid, and it shows just how much disdain Congress has for their own constituents,” Wilson said. “First congressional leadership calls opponents to the bill ‘un-American’ and compares them to Timothy McVeigh in order to intimidate opposition. And now, having failed to silence the American people, they are simply going to try to impose their tyrannical will upon them.”

In the pages of USA Today, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer wrote, “These disruptions are occurring because opponents are afraid not just of differing views — but of the facts themselves. Drowning out opposing views is simply un-American. Drowning out the facts is how we failed at this task for decades.”

Congressman Steve Kagen (WI-CD8) said they were “uncivilized,” and Congressman Baron Hill (IN-CD9) called them “political terrorists.” Congressman Brian Baird (WA-CD3) called opponents of the legislation “Brown Shirts” and compared them to domestic terrorists, “Some of the rhetoric that we’re hearing is… eerily reminiscent of the kind of things that drove Tim McVeigh to bomb the federal building in Oklahoma.”

Wilson concluded, “Harry Reid’s consideration of eliminating the filibuster would change Congressional tactics from demonizing public opposition to shunning it altogether.”

Interview Availability: Please contact Alex Rosenwald at (703)383-0880 or at to arrange an interview with ALG President Bill Wilson.

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