"I was a constitutional law professor, which means unlike the current president I actually respect the Constitution."
--U. S. Sen. Barack Obama, 2007
From the USSR Constitution, 1977:
ARTICLE 42. Citizens of the USSR have the right to health protection. This right is ensured by free, qualified medical care provided by state health institutions; by extension of the network of therapeutic and health-building institutions; by the development and improvement of safety and hygiene in industry; by carrying out broad prophylactic measures; by measures to improve the environment; by special care for the health of the rising generation, including prohibition of child labour, excluding the work done by children as part of the school curriculum; and by developing research to prevent and reduce the incidence of disease and ensure citizens a long and active life.
President Obama, DNC Event, St. Louis, October 4, 2011:
And, yes, we passed health care reform because no one in America should go bankrupt because somebody in their family gets sick. (Applause.)
Insurance companies can’t drop your coverage for no good reason. They won’t be able to deny your coverage because of preexisting conditions. Think about what that means for families all across America. Think about what it means for women.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Birth control --
THE PRESIDENT: Absolutely. You’re stealing my line. (Applause.) Breast cancer, cervical cancer are no longer preexisting conditions. No longer can insurance companies discriminate against women just because you guys are the ones who have to give birth. (Laughter.)
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Darn right!
THE PRESIDENT: Darn tooting. (Laughter.) They have to cover things like mammograms and contraception as preventive care, no more out-of-pocket costs. And while it will take a couple of years for all the reforms to fully take place, already we’ve got seniors all across the country who have gotten $250 to help them pay for their prescription drug benefit. And nearly 1 million young adults already have health insurance because of it -- 1 million more young people. That’s an incredible achievement. The Affordable Care Act is working. (Applause.)
ARTICLE 50. In accordance with the interests of the people and in order to strengthen and develop the socialist system, citizens of the USSR are guaranteed freedom of speech, of the press, and of assembly, meetings, street processions and demonstrations. Exercise of these political freedoms is ensured by putting public buildings, streets and squares at the disposal of the working people and their organisations, by broad dissemination of information, and by the opportunity to use the press, television, and radio.
Senator Obama, ABC News, April 11, 2007:
"I understand MSNBC has suspended Mr. Imus," Obama told ABC News, "but I would also say that there's nobody on my staff who would still be working for me if they made a comment like that about anybody of any ethnic group. And I would hope that NBC ends up having that same attitude."
"And the notion that somehow it's cute or amusing, or a useful diversion, I think, is something that all of us have to recognize is just not the case. We all have First Amendment rights. And I am a constitutional lawyer and strongly believe in free speech, but as a culture, we really have to do some soul-searching to think about what kind of toxic information are we feeding our kids,"
ARTICLE 52. Citizens of the USSR are guaranteed freedom of conscience, that is, the right to profess or not to profess any religion, and to conduct religious worship or atheistic propaganda. Incitement of hostility or hatred on religious grounds is prohibited. In the USSR, the church is separated from the state, and the school from the church.
Cardinal Francis George, February 27, 2012:
Cardinal George is warning the HHS contraception/abortifacient mandate will close Catholic hospitals and universities or force them to secularize, a process he calls “a form of theft.”
If the regulation is not rescinded, the Catholic Church will be “despoiled of her institutions,” he said in a column printed on CatholicNewWorld, likening the proposed policies to the restrictive “freedom of worship” allowed in the Soviet Union.
“What will happen if the HHS regulations are not rescinded?” he asked. A faithful ministry must choose between selling itself to a non-Catholic group, paying “exorbitant annual fines” until going bankrupt, breaking its ties to the Church’s “moral and social teachings and the oversight of its ministry by the local bishop,” or closing down.
He urged people to purchase a copy of the Archdiocesan directory “as a souvenir,” pointing to the page containing a list of Catholic hospitals and health care institutions.
“Two Lents from now, unless something changes, that page will be blank.”
The Obama administration’s rhetorical shift from supporting “freedom of religion” to “freedom of worship” paralleled an earlier shift in Russia, he said.
“Freedom of worship was guaranteed in the Constitution of the former Soviet Union,” Cardinal George said. “You could go to church, if you could find one. The church, however, could do nothing except conduct religious rites in places of worship—no schools, religious publications, health care institutions, organized charity, ministry for justice and the works of mercy that flow naturally from a living faith. All of these were co-opted by the government. We fought a long Cold War to defeat that vision of society.”
“The State is making itself into a church,” he stated.
Earlier this month, he wrote in a brief online reflection, “The laws that used to protect us are now being used to weaken and destroy us, and this quite deliberately.”
He sounded a similar alarm about the mandate, condemned by every Catholic bishop, saying its “long-term effect is that the Catholic Church will be stripped of the institutions that are her instruments for public service.”
“That’s not the country I was born in,” he said.
"We are five days from fundamentally transforming the United States of America,"
-- Presidential Candidate, Barack Obama, October, 2008.
Huzzah! We've finally found a promise Obama has kept.