The Second Louisiana Purchase

Way back in 1803, President Thomas Jefferson negotiated a deal with Napoleon Bonaparte that virtually doubled the size of the infant United States. This land deal which cost the princely sum of fifteen million dollars ( a really big deal in those days) bought us 828,000 square miles of territory and  a lot of stability.

Now, it appears that some 206 years later we are seeing a second Louisiana Purchase. This one  does not involve land but rather health care, Senators Harry Reid and Mary Landrieu and an illustration of how things often get done in Washington, DC.

In an ABC news article by Jonathan Karl, he describes language in the health care reform bill, tailored to be applicable to only one state, Louisiana. Beginning on page 432 of Reid’s bill, there is language referencing states that have been declared a major disaster area in the past 7 fiscal years. That  statement refers to the commonwealth of Louisiana. The descriptive language continues for 2 pages. Bottom line says the Congressional Budget Office, this  is  a  $100 million windfall or payoff, depending on one’s point of view. The senator from Louisiana says it is not $100 million but $300 million and she is  somewhat pleased with what she has gained for her state, by pledging her vote in Senator Reid’s direction. Her Press Secretary, Robert Sawicki says she has been working on this deal for a while. Senator Maverick,aka John McCain, was not so happy about it.

One should not be amazed, I guess, since Rush has always said to follow the money. What is  a bit refreshing is Senator Landrieu’s frank admission of  her intentions, saying that was elected to accomplish, bring the $ home  to her state. Refreshing, but a bit disheartening. Remember, we are still in the early stages of this bill. Today’s vote is just the first of several . You have to wonder what other commitments will be or have already been made  that have no connection to the real issue at hand.

Paging Rep William Jefferson and wouldn’t Huey Long be proud.


November 21, 2009 - Posted by | History, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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