indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Dynamic Homes
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines

printer friendly version
Proposed boost in IHS budget rejected by Senate
Friday, March 12, 2004

The U.S. Senate voted 51 to 45 early this morning to approve a $2.4 trillion budget after rejecting an amendment to increase Indian Health Service (IHS) by $3.44 billion.

Sen. Tom Daschle (D.S.D.), the minority leader, called for an increase to the clinical services portion of the IHS budget. In a speech on the Senate floor, he criticized the federal government for failing to provide adequate health care to American Indians and Alaska Natives.

"There are 2.5 million Native Americans in this country who, theoretically, have insurance. All too often, they get abysmal health care, or none at all," he said. "America is obligated, by law and by treaty, to provide free health care for American Indians -- a commitment we made to Indian people when the U.S. government took their lands."

"America is not honoring that commitment," he added.

Daschle offered the amendment to the budget resolution, which sets the federal government's spending levels for fiscal year 2005 and for the the four years following. He said the increase in IHS funds would be offset by reducing tax breaks for wealthy Americans.

But Republicans argued that the measure, along with others offered by Democrats, would lead to tax increases and upset plans to reduce the federal deficit, which stands at a half a trillion dollars.

The party line prevailed when the roll call on Daschle's amendment was called last evening and all Republicans present voted against it. Three Democrats, including Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, whose state has a 7.4 percent Indian population, joined the GOPs. The final tally was 54 against the amendment and 42 for it.

Repeating last year's floor action on the budget resolution, Republican leaders immediately offered an amendment to increase the total IHS account by $292 million. This amendment was swiftly approved, as it was last year.

But when it came time to implement the figure into the Department of Interior's budget bill, which includes the IHS, Republicans relented and voted against it last fall.

In February of this year, President Bush outlined a total budget of about $3 billion for IHS, an increase of 1.6 percent over current levels. In Bush's budget, clinical services is funded at $2.7 billion, an increase of $75 million.

Even if Daschle's amendment to the clinical services item were approved, tribal leaders say the amount would not be enough to provide adequate health care in Indian Country.

"Inflation really is our deadly enemy here," said Don Kashevaroff, president of the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. The rising cost of health care wipes out any gains in the IHS budget, he said.

According to government statistics, the U.S. spends about $1,900 on health care per Native American. The government spends twice that much for federal prisoners.

On The Senate Floor:
Sen. Daschle Speech (March 11, 2004)

Roll Call:
S.Amdt 2774: To create a reserve fund to allow for an increase in Indian Health Service Clinical Services by $3.44 billion and lower the national debt by eliminating abusive tax loopholes or reducing tax breaks for individuals with incomes in excess of $1 million per year (March 11, 2004)

Text of Amendment:
S.AMDT.2774

Budget Documents:
HHS Budget in Brief | HHS Performance Plan | Secretary Thompson's Remarks

Relevant Links:
Indian Health Service - http://www.ihs.gov
Department of Health and Human Services - http://www.hhs.gov

Related Stories:
Senate panel shares criticism of Bush budget (02/12)
Tribal leaders pressing Congress on funding (02/11)
Bush seeks $3 billion for Indian Health Service (02/03)
Daschle criticizes Bush on Indian health funds (02/03)
Daschle asks Bush to increase funding for IHS (12/18)
Democrats lay out plan for minority and Indian health (10/22)
Daschle: Improve Health Care in Indian Country (10/15)
Senate votes down health and trust measures (09/24)
Senate rejects one IHS funding measure, passes another (03/26)
Tribes told to explore health funding options (02/05)
Thompson releases new IHS budget (2/4)
Indian Country receives diabetes grants (12/11)
Congress approves $750M for Indian diabetes (11/21)

Copyright 2000-2004 Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe seeks prayers ahead of pipeline hearing (8/23)
Second run scheduled to raise awareness of Gold King Mine disaster (8/23)
U.S. Sentencing Commission continues work of tribal advisory group (8/23)
Chemehuevi Tribe wins decision barring county from citing members (8/23)
Lakota Country Times: Oglala Sioux Tribe joins fight against pipeline (8/23)
Native Sun News: Mario Gonzales moves from ball court to law court (8/23)
Brandon Ecoffey: The Horse Nations prepare for battle over pipeline (8/23)
Steven Newcomb: Standing Rock Sioux Tribe challenges domination (8/23)
Simon Moya-Smith: Hillary Clinton remains silent amid pipeline feud (8/23)
Sheriff mistook sacred pipes for pipe bombs at pipeline protest site (8/23)
Charles Carlyle: Issues to consider when doing business with tribes (8/23)
Choctaw Nation starts work on expansion of casino by Texas border (8/23)
Judge rules against Miccosukee citizen in gaming per capita dispute (8/23)
Seneca Nation stopped paying $17M a year for casino police service (8/23)
First Nations ratify agreement for seventh casino in Saskatchewan (8/23)
Tribes prepare for critical hearing in Dakota Access Pipeline lawsuit (8/22)
Hillary Clinton lands more tribal leader endorsements in New Mexico (8/22)
Donald Trump picks Navajo man for agriculture advisory committee (8/22)
Laguna Pueblo signs deal to acquire commercial casino in Louisiana (8/22)
Mark Trahant: Pipeline fight highlights power of political organizing (8/22)
Lakota Country Times: Tribes unite to stop Dakota Access Pipeline (8/22)
Native Sun News: Black Elk Peak honors sanctity of Black Hills site (8/22)
Vi Waln: Our water system is being threatened by energy pipelines (8/22)
Jeffrey Whalen: Corruption alive and well within Oglala Sioux Tribe (8/22)
Winona LaDuke: Bigger problems ahead for Dakota Access Pipeline (8/22)
Dallas Goldtooth: Tribes shut out of Dakota Access Pipeline process (8/22)
Sen. Martin Heinrich: Return tribal property to their rightful owners (8/22)
Peter d'Errico: 'Friends' continue to embrace negative Indian policy (8/22)
Marc Simmons: Tribes developed own trade and commerce system (8/22)
Native mother reunites with children taken by government in 1960s (8/22)
Chippewa Cree family lays young loved one Reece Morsette to rest (8/22)
GOP candidate blames tribal culture for lack of economic 'success' (8/22)
Indian children over-represented in welfare system in Minnesota (8/22)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.