Daily Reminder: February 10, 2012

Three years ago today, the U.S. Senate passed the first version of the “stimulus” bill by a 61-37 vote. Democrats and the president were aided by three turncoat Republicans: Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the latter of which would within the next few months formally switch parties after discovering that he polled badly as a Republican facing re-election. Minutes before the vote, the Congressional Budget Office put the total cost of the bill at $838 billion.

Included deep within the bill was a provision allowing for the creation of a new health care agency which would be charged with guiding physicians in their decision-making process. As it turns out, the Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research is modeled on an agency discussed by former Congressman Tom Daschle in his book, the goal of which, according to one Bloomberg article, was to “slow the development and use of new medications and technologies because they are driving up costs.”

270 DAYS UNTIL ELECTION DAY
345 DAYS UNTIL JANUARY 20, 2013

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