By Jason Taylor
When are the Republicans finally going to grow up, stop pretending they know anything about medicine, plan a health care proposal by incorporating professionals from the ANA, AMA, AHA and other non-partisans and do their jobs? That job is actually making health care insurance affordable, attainable, fair and just, and give coverage that will work not only for “some” but for all. Single-payer comes to mind.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced Tuesday that he will delay the August recess by two weeks, a move that could give Republicans more time to pass healthcare reform — but could also be used to move on to other issues.
Republicans are feeling pressure to put some points on the board, as so far they have no major legislative accomplishments since President Trump took office.
“We’re going to do healthcare next week,” McConnell told reporters, noting that the reconciliation process he plans to use to pass it with a simple majority is time-limited.
“Then we’re going to turn to other issues.”
It’s far from clear that McConnell will have the votes to win passage — or even to advance the bill. Opponents withheld support for a procedural motion on McConnell’s first attempt to prevent it from being discussed.
Republicans finally have that control, and their “base” are eager for them to “end the nightmare” as the first step toward erasing Obama from the history books. Unfortunately, Ryan and McConnell have belatedly discovered repealing the hated Obamacare is impossible. But they must deliver some sort of “health care” bill, or else face a firestorm: Along with an angry “base,” donors who expect an end to ACA taxes as a prelude to a huge tax cut might fund competitors in the 2018 primaries!
Desperate to protect their jobs and their majority, Republicans seek to eviscerate the ACA, freeing up funds to give donors their tax cuts. But that requires taking health care away from some 23 million people, risking a voter backlash. And some Republicans insist that’s not cruel enough. The only “winning” path seems to be convincing enough Republicans that the threat to their jobs from outraged “base” and donors are enough to overcome their objections.
“I feel good about the direction it’s going,” said Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) after discussing the bill with colleagues at a private lunch meeting.
Republicans will get two draft bills — one that includes an amendment sponsored by conservative Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) to allow insurance companies to sell plans that do not comply with federal regulatory requirements as long as they offer at least one plan that does and one draft that does not include it.
GOP leaders have submitted both versions to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
Senate Republican aides close to the negotiations last week panned the Cruz–Lee proposal as a nonstarter that was opposed by a majority of the GOP conference. Centrists say it could gut the federal requirement that insurance companies not discriminate against people with pre-existing medical conditions. Courtesy, The Hill
This flurry of effort shows that Republicans care only about themselves and their donors. They have no interest in health care. Wealth care for the rich is all that matters.
The Republicans have been promising health care repeal since 2010. All they have to show for the nothingness that gives shape to the emptiness that is all that remains of a once-honorable two-party system is simply another dodge, yet another draft of legislation in Mitch McConnell’s enduring quest to beggar everyday Americans while guarding the golden gate for the greedy campaign donors and lobbyists.
Sure, he’ll trot out some abomination in another day or two but the outrage will be a minor variation on the tired meme of severing the safety net. I can see Paul Ryan in the House salivating at the prospect of ripping out the underbelly of ObamaCare which, as anyone with any sense knows, is the main thrust of the GOP’s game plan. If Barack Obama hadn’t been black (or had been — gulp — a Republican) we wouldn’t be having this national headache.
The Trump administration’s current paralysis with all things Russia might, perhaps, give the Senate’s misers the cover they crave to try to pull off another class robbery. It’s all of one piece with healthcare: the rich vs. the not-rich in everyday America and the (white) Republican party that SO hates the black president.
It is time McConnell started accepting responsibility for this debacle. It is NOT Democratic Obstructionism that crafted this mediocre legislation. This is a GOP product pure and simple. It is not designed to meet any health care needs, it is a tax cut for the rich as intended from the beginning. Mitch your name and legacy will be forever tarnished with this sorry chapter in the history of our country.
McConnell accuses Democrats of obstructionism. That’s rich. The ease with which he lies is amazing.