Dennis Rehberg’s Big Day of Sunshine Under a Limbaugh Cloud


Dennis is so excited about yesterday. He was pretending to have read the House health care bill, doling out bits of “sunshine” as he feverishly read through through the text, exposing its nefarious schemes to socialize American life. Rehberg was excited, the Montana media was excited, and the Park County Republicans had to clean up after themselves:

Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-MT) went to town on Facebook and Twitter in Sarah Palin fashion yesterday, exposing the nearly 2000 page Pelosi-care bill that was “unveiled” in a closed-to-the-public ceremony the other day. What wasn’t unveiled in that event was put under a spotlight on Rep. Rehberg’s page.

You know was most excited, though? Probably Rush Limbaugh and the insurance company executives that Rehberg cribbed his comments from, many of which were flat out lies.

Let’s put Rehberg’s posts on Facebook side by side with the transcript of Limbaugh’s program yesterday, and see how much independent thinking Representative Rehberg was really doing.

Rehberg Limbaugh
Page 297 imposes a tax on all individuals who do not purchase “bureaucrat-approved” health insurance Page 297 — Section 501: “Imposes a 2.5 percent tax on all individuals who do not purchase ‘bureaucrat-approved’ health insurance — the tax would apply on individuals with incomes under $250,000, thus breaking a central promise of then-Senator Obama’s presidential campaign.”
Page 225 permits *but does not require* Members of Congress to enroll in government-run health care Page 225 — Section 330: “Permits — but does not require — Members of Congress to enroll in government-run health care.”  So they’ll be able to opt out of it and maintain their Cadillac plans.
Page 94 prohibits sale of private individual health insurance policies forcing you to go through fed government Page 94, Pelosi plan: “Prohibits the sale of private individual health insurance policies, beginning in 2013, forcing individuals to purchase coverage through the federal government.”  In 2013, after the 2012 presidential election.  In 2013, there is no private insurance allowed.  The sale of it will be prohibited.
Page 211 establishes new gov’t-run health plan that may cause as many as 114 million to lose existing coverage Page 211 — Section 321: “Establishes a new government-run health plan that, according to non-partisan actuaries at the Lewin Group, would cause as many as 114 million Americans to lose their existing coverage.”
Page 313 imposes 8% “tax on jobs” on firms that can’t afford “bureaucrat-approved” health coverage Page 313 — Section 512: “Imposes an 8 percent ‘tax on jobs’ for firms that cannot afford to purchase ‘bureaucrat-approved’ health coverage; according to an analysis by Harvard Professor Kate Baicker, such a tax would place millions ‘at substantial risk of unemployment’ — with minority workers losing their jobs at twice the rate of their white counterparts.”
Page 520 cuts more than $150 billion from Medicare Advantage plans, hurting at least 26,000 Montana seniors Page 520 — Section 1161: “Cuts more than $150 billion from Medicare Advantage plans.”
Page 336 imposes a half-trillion dollar “surcharge,” more than half of which will hit small businesses Page 336 — Section 551: “Imposes additional job-killing taxes, in the form of a half-trillion dollar ‘surcharge,’ more than half of which will hit small businesses;
The bill requires applicants to verify their citizenship, but not to verify identity Page 255 — Section 345: “Includes language requiring verification of income for individuals wishing to receive federal health care subsidies under the bill — while the bill includes a requirement for applicants to verify their citizenship, it does not include a similar requirement to verify applicants’ identity,

It’s certainly interesting to see that Rehberg managed to not only hit on all of the arguments advanced by Limbaugh, but he used the same language. I wonder if it’s possible that Limbaugh and Rehberg were using the same playbook, while Rehberg pretended to be evaluating the bill.

In what is perhaps the most astonishing twist, Limbaugh was more honest than Rehberg.  Consider the claim about a loss of 114 million people losing coverage. Rehberg leaves out that claim comes from the Lewin Group—and for good reason. The Lewin Group is a wholly-owned subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group, one of the largest private insurers in the country.

I’ll get back to the rest of the specious talking points that Rehberg is being fed later, but at a basic level, how can we trust Rehberg, who is presenting himself as some consumer champion, when all he is really doing is parroting talking points from insurance companies and the far right?

It’s an embarrassment, and it’s a damn shame that the media couldn’t search to find the source for the claims before promoting Rehberg’s “work.”

If you appreciate our efforts to hold Montana Republicans accountable and the independent journalism here at The Montana Post, please consider supporting our work with a small pledge.
Join a discussion of this (and all of our post) at our Facebook community page.

About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is an eighteen-year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.

His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.

In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.


Click here to post a comment
  • fixed along with the incapability to try and do anything at all but study a Teleprompter and Obama might be a pretty good chief executive

  • Generally I do not learn post on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to check out and do so! Your writing style has been amazed me. Thank you, very nice post.

  • Hello there! I know this is kind of off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one? Thanks a lot!

  • I’m happy I found this weblog, I couldnt find any data on this topic matter prior to. I also run a site and if you want to ever serious in a little bit of guest writing for me if possible really feel free to let me know, i’m always appear for people to verify out my site. Please stop by and leave a comment sometime!

  • It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button! I’d definitely donate to this excellent blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to new updates and will share this site with my Facebook group. Talk soon!

  • Very interesting details you have remarked, thanks for putting up. “Women have been trained to speak softly and carry a lipstick. Those days are over.” by Bella Abzug.

  • Simply wish to say your article is as astounding. The clarity on your submit is just excellent and i can suppose you are an expert on this subject. Fine together with your permission let me to snatch your feed to stay up to date with forthcoming post. Thank you a million and please keep up the enjoyable work.

  • I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  • Have you ever thought about publishing an e-book or guest authoring on other websites? I have a blog based upon on the same topics you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my viewers would appreciate your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e mail.

  • Hello! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us so I came to take a look. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Outstanding blog and fantastic style and design.

  • That is the proper weblog for anyone who wants to seek out out about this topic. You realize so much its virtually arduous to argue with you (not that I actually would need…HaHa). You positively put a brand new spin on a subject thats been written about for years. Great stuff, just nice!

  • Definitely consider that which you said. Your favourite reason appeared to be at the web the simplest factor to take into account of. I say to you, I certainly get irked at the same time as other folks think about issues that they just do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and outlined out the entire thing without having side effect , folks can take a signal. Will probably be again to get more. Thanks

  • of course like your web site however you have to test the spelling on several of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling issues and I in finding it very bothersome to tell the reality then again I¡¦ll certainly come back again.

  • We wished to stop in as well as give you people the chance to check out our site so that you are able to investigate our spectacular product. Our personnel and consumer support group are extraordinary as well as we recognize that we can easily fulfill your desires. Our capacities happen to be a great deal higher than our rivals as well as wish to view you prosper by having us on your side. If there happens to be everything we can do, gratify let us understand. 100 % customer peace of mind happens to be our number one target.

  • We would like to stop in as well as extend you guys the opportunity to drop by our internet site so that you can easily check out our incredible service. Our employee and client support group happen to be extraordinary and we know that we have the ability to meet your demands. Our abilities are a great deal higher than our rivals and need to see you flourish by having us on your side. If there is almost anything we can do, please let us know. 100 % consumer pleasure happens to be our leading end goal.

  • Hey – nice weblog, just looking about some blogs, seems a pretty great platform you might be utilizing. I’m currently making use of WordPress for a couple of of my sites but looking to alter 1 of them through to a platform comparable to yours as a trial run. Anything in specific you would suggest about it?

/* ]]> */