Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) pointed out some rather astounding language in the Senate health care bill during floor remarks tonight. First, he noted that there are a number of changes to Senate rules in the bill–and it’s supposed to take a 2/3 vote to change the rules. And then he pointed out that the Reid bill declares on page 1020 that the Independent Medicare Advisory Board cannot be repealed by future Congresses:
“It shall not be in order in the Senate or the House of Representatives to consider any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that would repeal or otherwise change this subsection.”
This is not legislation. It’s not law. This is a rule change. It’s a pretty big deal. We will be passing a new law and at the same time creating a Senate rule that makes it out of order to amend or even repeal the law.
I’m not even sure that it’s constitutional, but if it is, it most certainly is a Senate rule. I don’t see why the majority party wouldn’t put this in every bill. If you like your law, you most certainly would want it to have force for future Senates.
I mean, we want to bind future Congresses. This goes to the fundamental purpose of Senate rules: to prevent a tyrannical majority from trampling the rights of the minority or of future Congresses.
Paging Sarah Palin: the death panel is unkillable.
Go and watch the Demint's full comments: we REALLY need to find a way of curtailing parlamentary games...