It's deja vu all over again. Ever since the Obama administration managed to barely eke out the ACA in 2010, the Republicans have been obsessed with denying him that legacy. Sure they'll couch it in terms of "government overreach" or "bloated government program", but the underlying motivation is quite clear, despite their attempts at obfuscation.
pResident tRump in particular is obsessed. Ever since President Obama roasted him at the Press Club awards dinner, he's had Obama in his sights. Regardless of consequences, his sole motivation for becoming president appears to be so that he could roll back everything President Obama accomplished.
While Obama was president, it seemed like one or both houses of Congress were putting a bill through nearly monthly to "repeal and replace" what they had cynically labeled "ObamaCare". Initially meant to be a pejorative, President Obama embraced it, and it's general success irked them even more.
To be sure, there are some definite holes and unintended consequences with the law, and the lack of a backup plan for states where governors decided not to roll out the Medicaid expansion. These are all easily fixed, and the Republicans could be heroes if they crafted bills to fix these specific problems. They've had 10 years to do so, but they've painted themselves into a corner with promises of "repeal and replace". We all kind of expected them to have something read on Day 1 of the tRump "Administration".
It hasn't worked out that way. It turns out, the Republican party is just as fractured as the Democratic party when it comes to specific issues with health care (remember Bart Stupak
?). The sheep will generally go along with whatever the party wants. However, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski (and John McCain) have maintained some semblance of a conscience when it comes to denying health care access, and of course nothing is extreme enough for Rand Paul. The last several attempts have failed, and this one is on shaky ground.
This time around, they are trying to woo Senator Murkowski with a special giveaway for Alaska residents only
. The bill is also heavily tilted in favor of red states
which did not participate in the Medicare expansion, and pulls money from the "blue" states which did.
Republicans are claiming the bill won't roll back any of the protections from the insurance companies (it will
), but strangely enough, Blue Cross / Blue Shield is warning that it would
. How bizarre is it that the companies that were screwing people with "pre-existing conditions" are warning us that this bill would allow them to go back to doing that? The bill has already been criticized by health care providers
One wonders if the Republicans even know what's in the bill. Remember the twisted interpretation that became a touchstone of the Republicans back in 2010 when Nancy Pelosi supposedly said "We have to pass the bill to see what's in it"? That seems to be the case here as well
So to sum this up: The people don't want this bill, governors don't want this bill, health care providers don't want this bill, even insurance companies don't want this bill. It seems only Republican politicians want this bill. I wonder why?Oh yeah