With more and more of the white working class cretins who voted Trump coming to the realization that the new health care access they have enjoyed was, in fact, "Obamacare," Congressional Republicans who have ranted against the Affordable Health Care Act ("ACA") have come a parallel realization: repealing the ACA will be fought with great political danger and, if handled incorrectly could trigger a political bloodbath. The Washington Post has details on the GOP's current angst via a secret recording of the session in Philadelphia that indicates that behind closed doors the feigned unity against Obamacare is much less unified. Here are highlights revealed from the recording:
Republican lawmakers aired sharp concerns about their party’s quick push to repeal the Affordable Care Act at a closed-door meeting Thursday, according to a recording of the session obtained by The Washington Post.
The recording reveals a GOP that appears to be filled with doubts about how to make good on a long-standing promise to get rid of Obamacare without explicit guidance from President Trump or his administration. The thorny issues with which lawmakers grapple on the tape — including who may end up either losing coverage or paying more under a revamped system — highlight the financial and political challenges that flow from upending the current law.
Senators and House members expressed a range of concerns about the task ahead: how to prepare a replacement plan that can be ready to launch at the time of repeal; how to avoid deep damage to the health insurance market; how to keep premiums affordable for middle-class families; even how to avoid the political consequences of defunding Planned Parenthood, the women’s health-care organization, as many Republicans hope to do with the repeal of the ACA.
“That’s going to be called Trumpcare. Republicans will own that lock, stock and barrel, and we’ll be judged in the election less than two years away.”
Recordings of closed sessions at the Republican policy retreat in Philadelphia this week were sent late Thursday to The Post and several other news outlets from an anonymous email address.
Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Tex.) worried that one idea floated by Republicans — a refundable tax credit — would not work for middle-class families that cannot afford to prepay their premiums and wait for a tax refund.
Republicans have also discussed the idea of generating revenue for their plan by taking aim at deductions that allow most Americans to get health insurance through their employers without paying extra taxes on it.
Rep. John Faso (R-N.Y.), a freshman congressman from the Hudson Valley, warned strongly against using the repeal of the ACA to also defund Planned Parenthood. “We are just walking into a gigantic political trap if we go down this path of sticking Planned Parenthood in the health insurance bill,” he said.
[T]hese leaders acknowledged in Thursday’s meeting, as they have before, that Obamacare cannot be fully undone — or replaced — without Democratic cooperation.
That and other aspects of the unfinished GOP plan prompted several wary lawmakers to urge their leaders to move more deliberately — even as the Trump administration appears to be moving ahead with repeal.
Of particular concern to some Republican lawmakers was a plan to use the budget reconciliation process — which requires only a simple majority vote — to repeal the existing law, while still needing a filibuster-proof vote of 60 in the Senate to enact a replacement.
“The fact is, we cannot repeal Obamacare through reconciliation,” McClintock said. “We need to understand exactly: What does that reconciliation market look like? And I haven’t heard the answer yet.”
Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) worried that the plans under GOP consideration could eviscerate coverage for the roughly 20 million Americans now covered through state and federal marketplaces and the law’s Medicaid expansion: “We’re telling those people that we’re not going to pull the rug out from under them, and if we do this too fast, we are in fact going to pull the rug out from under them.”
“Health insurance is going to be tough enough for us to deal with without having millions of people on social media come to Planned Parenthood’s defense and sending hundreds of thousands of new donors to the Democratic Senate and Democratic congressional campaign committees. So I would just urge us to rethink this.”
Personally, I hoe the repeal of Obamacare becomes the GOP's Waterloo. Combine that with someone releasing documents that prove that Trump/Pence collaborated with Putin's Russia, and the collapse of the GOP could be complete and long, long overdue.