RachelWatch: Rachel Gives You a Sign

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Today: The Senate has a health care bill, anti-choicers are having an auction for a murderer, and Richard Engel has news from Afghanistan.

Health Care for All*

Senator Harry Reid (D – Nevada) announced that the Senate has a health care bill on Monday, and amazingly enough, the public option made it in.

Sort of.

Rachel ran through what we got and what we don’t got (so far) and Senator Ron Wyden (D – Oregon) dropped in to point out that the public option only works if it’s an option that’s available to the public.

Terror.org

Criminy.

The charming folks on the lunatic fringe who think it makes sense to call themselves “pro-life” while being explicitly pro-murder are having an auction to help Scott Roeder, the man who shot Dr. George Tiller in cold blood in his church.

If you’re into sick memorabilia and would like to participate in the glorification and encouragement of domestic terrorism, you’re in luck. But you can find the links on your own.

Life During Wartime

Rachel moved from disturbing news at home to upsetting news abroad.

14 Americans were killed in two different helicopter crashes in Afghanistan on Monday, in addition to two soldiers who lost their lives this weekend.

NBC News correspondent Richard Engel joined Rachel via satellite to discuss the problems of transporting soldiers with aging equipment in such a difficult environment and yet more problems with the situation in Afghanistan in general.

One More Thing:

Two suicide car bombers struck outside the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Public Works in Baghdad. They were part of a coordinated attack involving enormous bombs that had to make it through multiple checkpoints.

Which implies that the bombers had someone working on the inside.

So if you thought you’d only be getting upsetting war news from Afghanistan and Pakistan from now on, you’re out of luck.

Ms. Information

Rachel reported that The Tea Party Express has taken on a new name. The new tour is called The Tea Party Express: Countdown to Judgment Day.

OK, yes, that’s funny and really only a couple of steps away from “Tea Party Express II: Electric Boogaloo,” but eek-o-rama, isn’t anyone else concerned about how they worked the term “Judgment Day” in there? I would rather not be counting down to that, please.

And just to keep up with the medieval church-sounding theme, the tea partiers have a good old-fashioned schism going.

For those of you keeping score, the Tea Party Patriots are the scrappy independent underdogs, while the Tea Party Express folks seem to be more explicitly Republican and have the big-money backing, including Fox News. As in actual promotional ads from Fox News.

So as far as I can tell, the Tea Party Patriots are Delta House and the Tea Party Express folks are the Omegas. I think that makes Bill O’Reilly Dean Wormer, but I’m not sure.

Rachel also noted that Dr. Regina Benjamin, nominated for Surgeon General on July 13, still has not been confirmed.

Senate Republicans are holding up the final vote as a favor to health insurance giant Humana, which is being investigated for sending a possibly quite illegal scare-tactic mailer to its Medicare Advantage customers in the hopes of stopping health care reform.

You know those T-shirts you can get for sports teams that say “Property of the Pittsburgh Steelers,” or whichever team suits your fancy?

We need to start mandating those for politicians and their corporate donors.

Coal Play

You haul sixteen tons, and what do you get?

A dorm named after your very favorite nonrenewable resource.

Rachel and sportswriter (not comedian) Dave Zirin of The Nation took a look at what just got dropped into the University of Kentucky’s Christmas stocking.

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