December 03, 2003

reforming medicare for yourself

oh, how shocking:

Thomas Scully, the Bush administration official deeply involved in writing the Medicare bill, said Wednesday that he would resign once President George W. Bush signed the bill into law.

Scully said he probably would take a job at one of five law or investment firms that want him to advise clients affected by the sweeping legislation.

White House officials said Bush would sign the bill on Monday. Scully said he would step down on Dec. 15 as administrator of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

man, if i didn't have any scruples, i'd be a fat cat bastard by now. can you actually do this without wondering if there's a conflict of interest here? let's see, i help craft a bill reforming the agency i run, wait until the president signs it, and then immediately quit to do consulting. yeah, i'd say that's a big horking problem there.

perhaps scully should learn the virtue of patience and wait at least a couple of months. be discrete, dude.

oh, but there's no ethical violation because he received a waiver:

In an interview on Tuesday, Scully said that his discussions with potential employers conformed with federal ethics regulations and that he had seen no reason to recuse himself from work on the legislation.

He said he had consulted with the top ethics officer for the Department of Health and Human Services and that he had received a waiver allowing him to continue work on the bill. The department confirmed the waiver.

see? he's got a piece of paper. and as for scully, well, he was going to leave last may, but bush asked him to help out with the medicare bill, and his job negotiations then weren't very serious. so he was just doing bush a favor. and now he's going to go work for a law firm or investment company that can now rake in the cash consulting for pharmaceutical companies who don't have to worry about lowering their prices for bulk purchases by the government because that's not even an option in the bill. yay.

Posted by kilgore at December 3, 2003 09:49 PM | TrackBack
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