The Associated Press assigns BDS-infected reporter Jennifer Loven to cover the president’s second veto of the massive S-CHIP entitlement expansion tonight, and she piles on the bias thick–starting with the first paragraph:
President Bush vetoed legislation Wednesday that would have expanded government-provided health insurance for children, his second slap-down of a bipartisan effort in Congress to dramatically increase funding for the popular program.
Popular? When put to a popular vote, liberal Oregon voters resoundingly rejected the same cigarette tax-funded scheme for an expanded S-CHIP program.
It was Bush’s seventh veto in seven years — all but one coming since Democrats took control of Congress in January. Wednesday was the deadline for Bush to act or let the bill become law. The president also vetoed an earlier, similar bill expanding the health insurance program.
Bush vetoed the bill in private.
In a statement notifying Congress of his decision, Bush said the bill was unacceptable because — like the first one — it allows adults into the program, would cover people in families with incomes above the U.S. median and raises taxes.
“This bill does not put poor children first, and it moves our country’s health care system in the wrong direction,” Bush’s statement said. “Ultimately, our nation’s goal should be to move children who have no health insurance to private coverage, not to move children who already have private health insurance to government coverage.”
Bush urged Congress to extend the program at its current funding level before lawmakers leave Washington for their holiday break.
In fact, congressional leaders had already said earlier Wednesday that they now will try only to extend the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, or SCHIP, well into 2008 in basically its current form. Their comments signaled that they have given up efforts to substantially expand the program.
The Republican House leaders e-mailed the following this evening:
House GOP Leaders: Latest SCHIP Sham Vote Proves This Congress is About Politics, Not “The Children”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Republican Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO) issued the following statement on the Majority’s vote to delay until January 23, 2008 a vote attempting to override President Bush’s veto of a measure to expand the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to cover adults, illegal immigrants, and families that already have private health insurance:
“The Majority consistently tells us that this Congress is focused on ‘the children.’ But their decision to delay this veto override vote is just more proof that what this Congress really is focused on is politics. By delaying the vote to override the President’s veto of their flawed bill to expand SCHIP to cover adults, illegal immigrants, and those who already have private health insurance, the Majority has proven once again that they have no intention of renewing this program in a responsible, bipartisan way. That the Majority has turned this important issue into a cynical, political football is beyond disappointing, but after a year marked by non-stop partisan politics on Capitol Hill, it’s not at all surprising.”