The first loser in the Obamacare fight: C-SPAN. As a candidate, Barack Obama said he wanted C-SPAN cameras in the room to cover health-care negotiations, so that the public could see the sausage being made democracy in action. From the Los Angeles Times:
As a candidate, President Obama vowed that in devising a healthcare bill he would invite in TV cameras — specifically C-SPAN — so that Americans could have a window into negotiations that normally play out behind closed doors.
Having promised transparency, the administration should be willing to disclose who it is consulting in shaping healthcare policy, said an attorney for the citizens’ group. In its letter requesting the records, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics asked about visits from Billy Tauzin, president of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America; Karen Ignagni, president of America’s Health Insurance Plans; William Weldon, chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson; and J. James Rohack, president of the American Medical Assn., among others.
… PhRMA, which represents the nation’s drug companies, said it had taken part in two meetings with senior White House officials in the Roosevelt Room. Participants, according to Tauzin, included White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, along with the CEOs of some major drug companies. Both meetings were closed to the public.