The New Year Or Is It The Boo Year?

The new year is upon us and all the giddy Republicans can talk about is the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. In actual terms Republicans are unable to repeal Obamacare since Senate Democrats can filibuster such legislation. What Republicans have said is instead they will “defund” ACA, effectively rendering major parts of the healthcare legislation unusable. As for the “replace” portion, well that’s not quite on the drawing boards yet.

Does this sound like a group that can govern?

The Affordable Care Act is credited with bringing healthcare insurance coverage to about 20 million Americans who otherwise could not afford or were outrightly denied healthcare insurance. Medicare, Medicaid, and employer provided plans cover most Americans so who cares about the Affordable Care Act anyways?

The Republican mantra is “let the free market” loose and the problem of coverage will be solved. The US will return to the slogan “the best healthcare money can buy”. If you only have a little money, you can enjoy just a little healthcare.

Republican talking heads, of course, say otherwise. President-elect Trump has promised “great healthcare” as an Obamacare replacement. Yet no one has presented a replacement plan.  Hmmm.

Healthcare spending (about 3 trillion dollars) is a much tougher problem than gutting Obamacare. US per capita healthcare spending far exceeds any other country in the world. Reigning in healthcare spending while still providing coverage, arguably, is more important to balancing the budget. These brave Republicans leaders are noticeably silent about healthcare costs.

And as for the vaunted free enterprise system which will magically fix the defects in Obamacare, recognize that free enterprise was responsible for life time insurance caps, denial of coverage due to pre-existing conditions, and limits on the age children qualify for coverage under their parent’s policies. So how exactly are these “for profit” insurance companies going to fix something they created?

So, in these early days of 2017, Americans are beginning to see what lies ahead. The amalgamation of petty and special interests which comprise the Republican Party will emerge and will signal the return to the party of the few. The “few” are those who can afford to be Americans and are willing to vote for the Republican ticket.

President-elect Trump is a different factor and may see the replace situation differently.  Trump cannot be reelected by relying on gerrymandered districts. Trump must consider the wishes of a majority in each State.

President Trump must assess what is being proposed to replace Obamacare on how voters will react. The President-elect lost the popular vote by almost 3 million votes and some suggest as little as 100,000 votes in certain States would have flipped the electoral college outcome. Hmmm.

President Trump and the Republican controlled Congress, however, have the opportunity to govern for all Americans. How they actually deal with the Affordable Care Act will foretell whether 2017 will be a new year or a boo year.

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Explore posts in the same categories: affordable care act, Barack Obama, Democratic Party, Donald Trump, economic growth, Economics, health insurance companies, Healthcare, national debt, Politics, Republican Party, Uncategorized

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