November 24, 2009

Glenn Beck repeated on his Fox News show yesterday a line he had tried out earlier in the day on his radio show (and Rush Limbaugh used it too): Sen. Mary Landrieu is a high-priced prostitute because she wrangled in $100 million in aid to Louisiana in exchange for her Saturday vote for cloture in moving the health-care reform package forward in the Senate.

Beck: Look, if this health-care bill was right, would you need a hundred million dollar bribe -- oop, uh -- what are they actually calling it? Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana -- she was on the fence with this health-care bill, but then she ended up voting for it! What changed her mind? Some amazing cost-cutting maneuver, something that she was reading the bill and went, 'Oh my gosh, that's gonna make sure that everybody gets Band-Aids who has boo-boos.' No, it was reported on Friday that her vote was sold for 100 million dollars.

Yeah, hundred million dollars, right there in the health-care bill. A bill about health and care and covering people on health-related issues! Senator Landrieu was assured that her state, Louisiana, in the bill, would get 100 million dollars in aid.

[Video] Sen. Landrieu: I am not going to be defensive about asking for help in this situation. And it is not a 100 million dollar fix, it's a 300 million dollar fix.

Beck: Well, I'm sorry! So we know you're hookin', but you're just not cheap.

It's three hundred million dollars. She went on to point out that there's bipartisan support for this money in Louisiana. Ohhh! Well, how about it there support in Texas? How about Washington, are you for it? Oregon? You cool? Ohio? Are you good with it? Ohhh, that's great.

Nevermind all the details Beck has wrong here (Landrieu was just voting on cloture, not the bill itself; Landrieu in fact remains officially "on the fence" in terms of voting for the bill itself; and moreover, this kind of horse-trading is a standard feature of the American legislative system).

And those other states he mentions were not recently struck by one of the biggest natural disasters in American history nor are they still reeling economically from its effects. Do people in other states mind that Louisiana is getting this help? Well, speaking as someone from another state, hell no. It's what we do as United states, ya know.

But the biggest point is that he pretends this was just generic "aid" for Louisiana completely unrelated to health care -- when in fact the funds will go to the state's Medicaid program, which is near collapse after the economic effects of Katrina. That is to say, it will mostly go to help poor and indigent people, many of them minorities. You have to wonder if that's what Glenn Beck objects to.

At the end of this rant, Beck intones:

I guess shame is dead. Shame died.

It sure as hell did on Glenn Beck's show. Not sure it was ever alive there, though.

Sam Stein reports that the pressure is now on Republican Rep. David Vitter to denounce Beck's remarks.

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