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Oct. 20 2009 - 7:57 pm | 42 views | 1 recommendation | 1 comment

Tom Harkin Is Trying to Pray America’s Illnesses Away

This man is dangerous and nuts.

This man is dangerous and nuts.

Oh, look what some enterprising bloggers found in the Senate HELP committee health care reform bill, sponsored by noted crank Senator Tom Harkin!

(D) The essential benefits provided for in subparagraph (A) shall include a requirement that there be non-discrimination in health care in a manner that, with respect to an individual who is eligible for medical or surgical care under a qualified health plan offered through a Gateway, prohibits the Administrator of the Gateway, or a qualified health plan offered through the Gateway, from denying such individual benefits for religious or spiritual health care, except that such religious or spiritual health care shall be an expense eligible for deduction as a medical care expense as determined by Internal Revenue Service Rulings interpreting section 213(d) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 as of January 1, 2009.

The IRS, of course, recognizes Christian Science prayer treatments as a tax-deductible medical care expense. (And acupuncture!)

But, you know, this isn’t all bad. If you die of praying instead of seeking real-life medical treatments, at least your next of kin will be reimbursed.

(More good news: the House Commerce health care bill includes matching language!)


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  1. collapse expand

    Since your profile pic shows you smoking, I will take your mention of “real life” medical treatments with a bit of irony. If you don’t know someone who has been healed through prayer or helped through a physical challenge by a spiritual faith, I suggest you do some research. Plenty of people out there willing to tell their stories. Plenty of examples…

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    I write about politics for famous cesspool blog Gawker. Formerly, I was the Editor of Washington DC Gossip Website Wonkette.com. My writing has appeared on many famous and popular internet sites, on the World Wide Web. I am not a doctor and, in fact, did not even finish attaining a BFA.

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