Adrian Smith, a Republican member of Congress from Nebraska, has been making some wild exaggerations in order to argue against health care reform. He warns his constituents, “As the health care reform debate begins in Congress, some lawmakers are pushing a one-size-fits-all government takeover approach to health care.”
What Representative Smith is talking about, actually, is legislation in the House of Representatives that would merely give people the option to join a government-funded health care plan. According to Smith, the mere existence of government-funded health care programs amounts to a “government takeover” of health care.
The odd thing is that Adrian Smith already supports government-funded health care programs. In fact, he’s the author of a major piece of legislation in which the federal government would provide money for new health care programs. The difference between Smith’s health care legislation and the Democrats’ health care reform legislation is that Congressman Smith proposes to provide government-funded health care to animals, and the Democrats propose to provide government-funded health care to human beings.
It’s no joke. With the support of lobbying organizations such as the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Adrian Smith has written H.R. 3519, the Veterinarian Services Investment Act. Under this law, the federal government would provide grants to establish veterinary clinics and other health care programs for animals all across the United States. Representative Smith even proposes that Native Americans would benefit from government funding for what he calls “tribal veterinary agencies”.
Using his own standards, we could accuse Congressman Adrian Smith of proposing a government takeover of health care for animals. When it comes to health care reform for human beings, however, Smith is against it. Wasteful spending, he calls it.
In Adrian Smith’s strange world, government-run health care reform is needed for the cow grazing down the road from you, but there’s not enough money to provide the same service to you.