Palin Continues "Death Panels" Critique

(AP/Harper)
Sarah Palin has returned to the battle over health care reform with a familiar refrain, slamming what she and others dubbed "death panels" over the summer.

Following passage of the health care overhaul in the House on Saturday night, Palin took to her Facebook page to register her well-known opposition to the Democratic plan.

"We've got to hold on to hope, and we've got to fight hard because Congressional action tonight just put America on a path toward an unrecognizable country," Palin opened the post. "The same government leaders that got us into the mortgage business and the car business are now getting us into the health care business."

Palin continues: "This out-of-control bureaucratic mess will be disastrous for our economy, our small businesses, and our personal liberty. It will slam businesses at a time when we are at double-digit unemployment rates – the highest we've seen in a quarter of a century. This massive new bureaucracy will cost us and our children money we don't have. It will rob Americans of more of our freedom and further hamper the free market."

The former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential nominee has received the most attention for coming back in the post to her claim that the bill contains so-called "death panels" – despite the fact that numerous media organizations and nonpartisan fact-checkers have said in the past that there is no such thing in the bill.

"We had been told there were no 'death panels' in the bill either," Palin wrote. "But look closely at the provision mandating bureaucratic panels that will be calling the shots regarding who will receive government health care."

Palin did not offer more explanation as to what she was referring to in the post, but here's what FactCheck.org from the University of Pennsylvania said about the claim back in August, as noted by CNN. Although the bill has changed since then, critics have not pointed to any new language as evidence of a new push for "death panels."

"The fact remains that the bill wouldn't require patients to receive counseling sessions, nor would it require a doctor to offer one," FactCheck.org wrote. "Rather, it modifies Section 1861(s)2 of the Social Security Act, defining what services Medicare will pay for. So if a patient receives a counseling session from a doctor or health care practitioner, he or she doesn't have to pay for it – Medicare will. As we pointed out in our earlier story, Medicare will also pay for prosthetic limbs, but that doesn't mean that every recipient gets those, too."

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