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Obama bypasses Senate for new Medicare chief

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Filed: Timeline

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama bypassed the Senate Wednesday and appointed Dr. Donald Berwick, a Harvard professor and patient care specialist, to run Medicare and Medicaid.

The decision to use a so-called recess appointment to install Berwick as administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services drew immediate fire from the GOP. Republicans have raised concerns about Berwick's views on rationing of care and other matters and said it was wrong for Obama to go around the normal Senate confirmation process. That view was echoed by a key Democratic committee chairman, although the recess appointment is a tool used by presidents of both parties.

Berwick has wide support in the medical community but some Democrats feared the GOP would use his confirmation hearings as an opportunity to reopen last year's divisive health care debate. Obama defended the decision to appoint Berwick and two other officials, one to a pension board and the other to a White House science post.

"It's unfortunate that at a time when our nation is facing enormous challenges, many in Congress have decided to delay critical nominations for political purposes," Obama said in a statement Wednesday. "These recess appointments will allow three extremely qualified candidates to get to work on behalf of the American people right away."

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell accused Obama of trying to "arrogantly circumvent the American people" with Congress out of town for its annual July Fourth break. Berwick could serve through next year without Senate confirmation.

"Democrats haven't scheduled so much as a committee hearing for Donald Berwick but the mere possibility of allowing the American people the opportunity to hear what he intends to do with their health care is evidently reason enough for this administration to sneak him through without public scrutiny," said McConnell, R-Ky.

Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., whose committee would have held Berwick's confirmation hearing, also said he was troubled by the recess appointment. "Senate confirmation of presidential appointees is an essential process prescribed by the Constitution that serves as a check on executive power," said Baucus. Berwick was nominated in April, and Finance Committee staff was still at work on the vetting process it undertakes prior to scheduling a confirmation hearing.

Berwick, 63, is a pediatrician, Harvard University professor and leader of a health care think tank, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, that works to develop and implement concepts for improving patient care. The programs he will oversee—Medicare and Medicaid for the elderly, poor and disabled, along with the Children's Health Insurance Program—provide care to about 100 million people, or around 1 in 3 Americans.

Republicans have seized on comments like one Berwick made to an interviewer last year: "The decision is not whether or not we will ration care—the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open. And right now, we are doing it blindly."

Republicans say that shows Berwick would deny needed care based on cost. Supporters contend rationing already is done by insurance companies and Berwick simply wants transparency and accountability in medical decisions.

It's just those echoes of the health care debate that Democrats would prefer not to replay on the Senate floor.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D9GQIGKG0&show_article=1

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Why don't they just skip all this and go ahead and name Harvard as the cabinet?


Русский форум член.

Ensure your beneficiary makes and brings with them to the States a copy of the DS-3025 (vaccination form)

If the government is going to force me to exercise my "right" to health care, then they better start requiring people to exercise their Right to Bear Arms. - "Where's my public option rifle?"

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I love this guy already!


Русский форум член.

Ensure your beneficiary makes and brings with them to the States a copy of the DS-3025 (vaccination form)

If the government is going to force me to exercise my "right" to health care, then they better start requiring people to exercise their Right to Bear Arms. - "Where's my public option rifle?"

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Filed: AOS (pnd) Country: Canada
Timeline

Berwick is anti-American scum and should be dealt with as such accordingly.

Mr. I Hate America and love the NHS to death...

He should get the hell out and move to the UK if he feels to happy about it.


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The Great Canadian to Texas Transfer Timeline:

2/22/2010 - I-129F Packet Mailed

2/24/2010 - Packet Delivered to VSC

2/26/2010 - VSC Cashed Filing Fee

3/04/2010 - NOA1 Received!

8/14/2010 - Touched!

10/04/2010 - NOA2 Received!

10/25/2010 - Packet 3 Received!

02/07/2011 - Medical!

03/15/2011 - Interview in Montreal! - Approved!!!

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