Thanks to the irrepressible Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, who is emerging as the most energetic and principled conservative leader of the 112th Congress, the Congressional Research Service published a report on Feb. 10 detailing how the Obama administration is planning to spend $105.5 billion that was put on an appropriations autopilot in the health care legislation the Democrat-majority Congress enacted last year.
Unless the Republican-controlled House in this Congress can force President Obama to sign new legislation forbidding dispersal of this $105.5 billion, the administration will spend it to lay the basic foundations for a socialistic health care system in the United States.
The CRS report includes a 12-page table itemizing a broad array of intrusions into the prerogatives of states and individuals authorized by provisions in the Obamacare law and funded for this and future years without the need of Congress passing the customary annual appropriations laws to underwrite them.
According to the CRS report, the automatically funded Obamacare items include, among others:
-- Whatever amount the secretary of health and human services determines is necessary for "each fiscal year" for "grants to states to plan and establish exchanges" for selling federally approved, federally subsidized health insurance plans. On the last day of fiscal 2010, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius approved an initial $49 million in grants for this purpose. In January, according to CRS, HHS "encouraged states to apply" for additional grants this year.
-- $6 billion for Sebelius "to establish the Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) program to provide funding until July 1, 2013, for the creation of non-profit member-run health insurance issuers that offer" government-approved health insurance plans. This would be the Haight-Ashbury branch of our new socialized medical system.
-- $500 million for Sebelius to establish, as Section 3026 of Obamacare puts it, "a Community-Based Care Transitions Program under which the Secretary provides funding to eligible entities that furnish improved care transition services to high-risk Medicare beneficiaries."