Fossella, SCHIP and Giuliani
Tomorrow the House will vote to override President Bush's veto on the state sponsored children's health care program SCHIP. The bill which passed both the House and Senate with majorities would expand health care coverage to 10 million uninsured children. President Bush has said that is too much in an effort to deny coverage so as to not compete with private insurance company profits at the cost of this nation's most vulnerable.
Rep. Vito Fossella has come out in support of SCHIP and did vote for it unfortunately however after voting against it on the House floor. So he is making progress in the right direction. The problem that remains is that the bill is a handful of votes short of achieving a veto-proof override in the House, something the Senate does have. While Fossella has sent his staffers and PR managers out to write op-ed pieces and letters to the editor to suddenly champion this cause, he has done little in terms of working to get this bill past the President's veto. To my knowledge he has not managed to convince any of his fellow Republicans who voted no to change their vote. He has not gone on Sunday morning talk shows to debate and speak against those denying this bill's chances of passage.
But to really look at his 'support' for SCHIP you need to take a step back and look at some other indicators, such as his endorsement of Giuliani for President. Rudy has stated that he supports President Bush's veto, via AFL-CIO;
NBC News quoted Giuliani as supporting Bush’s veto, saying the SCHIP bill expanded coverage too broadly.
"We’re going to take people off private insurance and put them on government insurance—that’s a disaster."
When you look at this issue in its totality, Fossella has voted once against this bill, Fossella has done nothing to work aggressively towards its passage and Fossella continues to support a Presidential candidate who given the chance would also veto this bill once he is in the White House. So how can Fossella really support SCHIP if all he does is show up once to vote for it after knowing the bill would pass with or without him. If Fossella actually supported SCHIP he would be doing more than defending his first no vote, like defending our children and their need for healthcare access.