Sunday, February 2, 2014

Editorials Spell Out the Bankruptcy of GOP Healthcare Policies

Big guns WaPo and NYTimes have tangential looks at GOP goings-on in the healthcare field. First, let's look at the Times' editorial about the emerging (actually emerging, as in evolving as we speak) alternative Republican health-insurance bill:
The plan would repeal the Affordable Care Act and substitute an alternative that would likely cover fewer uninsured people, raise premiums for many older adults, shrink Medicaid, cut back on subsidies for middle class Americans, scale back protections for people with pre-existing conditions, and allow private insurers to escape many of the consumer-friendly requirements now imposed on them.
Read the whole editorial to understand how the Republican plan makes everything worse, full stop. It's as if the best minds in the Republican fold said, "Hey, let's take Obamacare and make it more expensive to buy inferior plans that don't cover nearly as many people." Please.

Next, in the Post, let's examine what, for Republicans, passes for good policy in Virginia:
Del. S. Chris Jones, a Republican who chairs the Appropriations Committee in Virginia’s House of Delegates, is proof positive that ideology has trumped common sense in the state GOP. Presented with evidence that expanding Medicaid under Obamacare would save Virginia $1 billion over the next nine years, Mr. Jones (Suffolk) said he didn’t care, his opposition to expansion was unchangeable — and besides, he had “not had a chance to look at these numbers.”
Translation: No matter what the benefit to his constituents, to taxpayers and to the welfare of the Old Dominion, Mr. Jones will not hear of it. He’s sticking to his guns, no matter what the facts happen to be.
So, as was already advertized as likely when the Congressional Budget Office first looked at Obamacare before it even passed, new studies show that Virginia will save a billion dollars over a nine-year period -- and, of course, also insure thousands upon thousands of its poorest citizens in the bargain -- but the Republicans in Virginia won't allow it.

Why? Because Obama gets no victory from them.

So this is how the Republicans view their role in public governance, and this is how they expect to stay in power. The irony is that, through patient and continuous obfuscation and millions upon millions of Citizens United dark money, they just might. Ugh.

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