Sunday, January 03, 2010

Gun Lobby Gets into Healthcare

Well, points for creativity, at least.

Perhaps afraid that they losing out on the action, Gun Owners of America (GOA) is now officially opposed to health care reform ... on the grounds that it would infringe upon Americans' right to own guns.

Yep, you read that right. And how, exactly, does healthcare reform relate to gun ownership? Over to the GOA's healthcare report:
Every draft of the ObamaCare legislation on Capitol Hill would give Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius tremendous regulatory power. And in early versions of the Senate bill, the anti-gun Sebelius could very well have mandated that gun ownership is an activity so dangerous that your insurance coverage needed to be suspended.
In other words, there's nothing in the bill specifically prohibiting the HHS Secretary from declaring that gun ownership is hazardous to your health, and then, through some (unknown and unexplained) mechanism, using that declaration to make healthcare more expensive for gun owners.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that the reason it isn't specifically prohibited is that the idea is so absurd no one even thought about it until the GOA 'discovered' it 6 months into the healthcare debate. There's nothing in there specifically prohibiting the HHS Secretary from declaring that excessively long nose hair is hazardous to your health either, but that doesn't mean Medicare is going to start requiring its seniors to buy nose-hair trimmers.

But it gets better. When the GOA brought this up to several Democratic senators, they got a diplomatic version of "Wtf are you smoking?"

Bob Casey (D-PA):
"There is no mention of 'gun-related health data' anywhere in the Senate's health reform bill, and there is nothing in the bill that would result in any such data being reported to the government. I support the Second Amendment and will continue to uphold the rights of law-abiding citizens to own firearms."

Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)
"It is my understanding that there is no discussion within the Senate concerning firearms in relation to health care. Please be assured I will keep your comments in mind as the Senate debates comprehensive health care reform."

But the GOA kicked and screamed and made enough noise that Harry Reid eventually threw up his hands in exasperation, and added language specifically prohibitting firearm data from being collected or used in conjunction with healthcare.

And NOW, the GOA is crowing that including this language actually proves that eliminating gun ownership was Obama's goal all along:
To listen to these and other liberal senators, you would think there were no 2nd Amendment concerns in President Obama's signature piece of legislation. But then, lo and behold, Sen. Reid included language in his substitute amendment that totally undercut these senators' excuses.
So let me get this straight. 1) GOA comes up with a completely absurd argument that healthcare will be bad for gun ownershp. 2) Senators tell GOA they're a bunch of idiots, but GOA whines enough that Reid finally adds language to the bill addressing GOA's concerns. 3) This proves GOA was right all along, since lack of absurd language in the original bill obviously proves that the absurdity was the real goal all along.

*Sigh. Better idiots please

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