News Clips Sept 14, 2009

Obama expects passage of ‘good health care bill’

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama began a week that will dwell heavily on overhauling the health care system, declaring himself confident Congress will pass “a good health care bill” even though some Republican opponents were trying to kill the measure for political gain.

At the same time, the president and some members of both parties were shifting from hard positions about a government insurance option toward some agreement on reducing medical care costs and restricting insurance company practices.

Why health care reform won’t reform health

Like most people, I was encouraged and energized by President Obama’s stirring speech to Congress last week. With rare candor, he told the truth about the three C’s of reform: costs, coverage, and character. The last C was the most emotionally charged. Staring lawmakers and citizens in the eye, the President essentially asked, “Is America a society that squanders $900 billion on a dishonest war but refuses to spend the same amount to give its citizens affordable health care?” Because of the massive counterefforts by lobbyists and the resistance of the right wing, we’re holding our breaths on the answer to that question.

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Public Option Fades From Debate Over Health Care

WASHINGTON — It was just one line in a campaign manifesto, and it hardly seemed the most significant or contentious. As a presidential candidate, Barack Obama said he would “establish a new public insurance program” alongside private health care plans.
That proposal took on a life of its own, but it now appears to be dying, a victim of an ineffectual White House strategy, the president’s failure to argue passionately for the “public option” and all-out opposition by the insurance industry and much of the health care industry.

Democrats Stand By Public Option

Key Democrats signaled that they weren’t giving up on the idea of including a controversial, government-run insurance option as part of a health-care overhaul plan, despite waning support from the White House.

“No, it’s not” dead, Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D., Ill.), said of the public-insurance option, in an appearance Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Dems seek to play down role of public option idea

WASHINGTON — The White House and its Democratic allies on Sunday tried to play down the role of a government insurance option in health care legislation as the party in power worked to reclaim momentum on President Barack Obama’s top domestic priority.

His spokesman described the public option as just one way to achieve Obama’s goal of providing coverage to the estimated 45 uninsured Americans without insurance. His senior adviser contended the White House was not ready to accept that Congress would reject the idea, though he, too, said it was an option, not a make-or-break choice.

Immigration raids yield jobs for legal workers

When federal agents descended on six meatpacking plants owned by Swift & Co. in December 2006, they rounded up nearly 1,300 suspected illegal immigrants that made up about 10% of the labor force at the plants.

But the raids by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents did not cripple the company or the plants. In fact, they were back up and running at full staff within months by replacing those removed with a significant number of native-born Americans, according to a report by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS).

Immigration reform groups march in Albert Lea

Carrying a message of hope and fair immigration reform, about 30 people from multiple organizations around the state marched for justice In Albert Lea on Sunday, during what was the last of a series of reform marches over the weekend.

Sane Immigration Reform on Tap?

The chances of building a sane immigration system seemed unlikely enough in 2007 before it was squashed by
divisions among Democrats and a talk radio-fueled revolt on the right. If anything, they look even worse now, given the competing debates over health care and energy, a jobless rate edging toward 10 percent, and a plateau or decline in the number of illegal immigrants in the country.

Soap opera gets Latinos in tune with health care

DENVER — It has all the hallmarks of the beloved telenovela: Heart-wrenching dialogue. Doors slamming amid tears. Over-the-top theatrics.

But the titillating story lines are laced with medical advice. An expecting but bickering couple is encouraged to seek prenatal care. The uncle of a boy injured in a car wreck caused by a drunk teenager learns about state-funded health insurance. A character who doesn’t like her figure gets some advice from a health care adviser: Stop eating so many tamales.

‘You lie!’ yeller Rep. Joe Wilson tells truth about GOPers’ fringe

A class act he is not, but South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson’s boorish behavior during President Obama’s speech on health reform more than earned him his 15 minutes of infamy.

It is understandable that he chose – or as some suggested, was told – to bellow “You lie!” when the President was explaining for the umpteenth time that undocumented immigrants would not be covered under health care legislation. After all, Wilson’s extreme anti-immigrant positions are well known.

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Misconceptions about Latinos confronted

Activists say new ethnic group is growing in size and influence and seeks to be part of community.

WILKES-BARRE — Organizers of the Wyoming Valley Interfaith Council’s Hispanic Heritage Month event at King’s College on Sunday sought to dispel misconceptions in the minds of local people about the Latino community.

Latino Heritage Month begins Tuesday

Purdue University student Brittney Jackson is looking forward to taking a historic neighborhood tour in Detroit this fall to see the works of Mexican muralist Diego Rivera.

“I’m interested to see what he has done and what other influences Latinos have had in Detroit,” said the 21-year-old senior.
The trip is a part of the many cultural and educational programs planned here to celebrate Latino Heritage Month, which begins Tuesday and ends Oct. 15.

Hispanic Heritage Month starts Tuesday (celebrate with a good book, FL. DOE says)

The Florida Department of Education has released a list of recommended books students could read in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, which starts Tuesday.
You can find the list of titles here.

The month, first recognized by President Gerald Ford in 1974, kicks off with the day five Latin American countries achieved independence.

As with other book lists put out by the DOE, this one is broken down by broad grade levels.

U.S. Census Bureau Facts for Features: Hispanic Heritage Month 2009: Sept. 15
– Oct. 15

WASHINGTON, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — In September 1968, Congress
authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage
Week, which was observed during the week that included Sept. 15 and  Sept. 16.
The observance was expanded in 1988 to a month-long celebration  (Sept. 15 –
Oct. 15). America celebrates the culture and traditions of those who trace
their roots to Spain, Mexico and the Spanish-speaking nations of Central
America, South America and the Caribbean. Sept. 15 was chosen as the starting
point for the celebration because it is the anniversary of independence of
five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras
and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their  independence
days on Sept. 16 and Sept. 18, respectively.


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