On Monday, the House Republicans released their Replacement Health Care Plan so they can Repeal “Obamacare”. Donald Trump jumped at the chance to embrace the Plan. Also, since the GOP has been so focused on devising, a replacement plan, they seem most ebullient just to mimic George W. Buh’s boast of “Mission Accomplished!”; but, the suitability aspects must have been left back at the conference room. The reception for the much touted GOP plan, so far, has been anything but favorable, even from within their own party.
Actually, the House Leadership didn’t release it; rather, they seem to have preferred to just have it leaked. There wasn’t any condemnation for it getting out, just the wiggle room to declare that it was only an early draft and, that way, they could always reel it back in. Right now, however, the House GOP leadership is trying to put some lipstick, as well as some rouge, on this pig. But really, this swine is just not gonna fly.
Since the Plan is, no doubt, being analyzed in minute detail, by all of the usual news sources, I will not try to duplicate their efforts. The NY Times article, linked above, cites various key components of the ACA, and how the House Plan compares. Specific parts of the ACA are also cited, along with explanatory notes on those being: retained; modified; or eliminated. However, I would like mention a few key points, which the GOP might have purposely preferred to be lost in the shuffle:
- What will happen to those previously uninsured Americans who, under ACA’s Extended Medicaid provision, will lose their health care coverage under the GOP Plan? Why hide that fact?
- Why would reasonably wealthy people be receiving the health care tax credits, rather than just those who need the help in order for them to buy the insurance? A tax-cut for the wealthy?
- When will the American People be advised that they will not be guaranteed to be covered for “pre-existing conditions” if they had not, in fact, already purchased the insurance coverage? Why not spell this vital detail out? Besides, no health care insurer would provide new customers with coverage that include adverse medical conditions!
- Block Grants will not insure health care for residents, when given to the states as “flexible dollars”, because the funds may just be added to the state’s General Fund. In 2009, Republican Governor Mark Sanford, of South Carolina, received Infrastructure money from the Federal government, intended to create “shovel-ready” jobs; but, he used it to pay-down the state debt. And, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, also a Republican, just refused the much-needed money outright.
The Affordable Care Act certainly can be improved, as was Medicare when it was originally passed, and also the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D). The Republican Party has been extremely intent on obstructing President Barack Obama, since the evening of his first Inauguration, and Trump just wants to tear down anything that Obama had accomplished.
But, is that a reason to take Affordable Health Care away form the tens of millions of Americans who have come to rely upon it? The following Op-Ed, from the NY Times, is co-authored by Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, a key participant in writing the ACA Legislation.)