Republicans have been insisting for months that Democrats are shoving a secret bill down the throats of the American public. The health reform legislation “should be posted online for 72 hours so members and the American people get a chance to see what’s in these bills,” House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) told Fox News. “But it seems to me that Democrat leaders want to rush these bills through Congress before anybody has a chance to read them.”
In fact, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) “has repeatedly pledged to Republicans that the health bill and any manager’s amendment would be posted online for at least 72 hours before the House votes,” and he promised again this week.
At a press conference this morning, a reporter turned the tables on Boehner and asked whether he’d post the GOP plan for 72 hours. Boehner declined to make such a pledge:
QUESTION: Will the Republicans put their alternative online for 72 hours as well?
BOEHNER: Uh, we’ll uh, we’ll have our ideas ready. Don’t worry.
Why won’t Bohner post the GOP plan? Because he doesn’t have one. Later in the press conference, this minor detail was revealed when a reporter pressed Boehner for a GOP alternative plan:
QUESTION: Is it your plan to have one Republican alternative that you all would get behind and endorse?
BOHNER: We have a number of ideas that we would like to proffer in this process, and we’re not quite sure how the majority intends to proceed. And so until we understand how they intend to proceed, it’s pretty difficult for us to have a solid plan.
Earlier this month, Fox’s Greta van Susteren asked Boehner why House Republicans didn’t push for transparency when they were in power. “It was a different time,” Boehner said in response.
It’s clear why Republicans have been insisting on having as much time as possible to read the bill. As Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) explained, health insurance lobbyists need to be given “at least 72 hours” so they can try to kill the legislation.