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Monday, December 07, 2009

Small Biz Health Care Daily: Opposing Government Care and Supporting Slavery?

People of good conscience can disagree over how best to reform health care, can’t they? And debate can be spirited and pointed without character assassination, right?

Opposition to more government involvement in health care can be rooted in concerns over how rising costs will hit small businesses, consumers and the overall economy, along with more government control centralizing health care decision-making and diminishing the quality of care. After all, that’s what economics and history tell us.

But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) compared those who oppose more government regulation, mandates, spending and taxes in health care to those who supported slavery. As reported by, Reid declared on the floor of the U.S. Senate on December 7:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid took his GOP-blasting rhetoric to a new level Monday, comparing Republicans who oppose health care reform to lawmakers who clung to the institution of slavery more than a century ago. The Nevada Democrat, in a sweeping set of accusations on the Senate floor, also compared health care foes to those who opposed women's suffrage and the civil rights movement …

"Instead of joining us on the right side of history, all the Republicans can come up with is, 'slow down, stop everything, let's start over.' If you think you've heard these same excuses before, you're right," Reid said Monday. "When this country belatedly recognized the wrongs of slavery, there were those who dug in their heels and said 'slow down, it's too early, things aren't bad enough.'"

He continued: "When women spoke up for the right to speak up, they wanted to vote, some insisted they simply, slow down, there will be a better day to do that, today isn't quite right. When this body was on the verge of guaranteeing equal civil rights to everyone regardless of the color of their skin, some senators resorted to the same filibuster threats that we hear today."

All, including those in the small business community, who are opposed to imposing the ills of increased government control over health care should be offended by Reid’s extremist comments.

Raymond J. Keating
Chief Economist
Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council

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