House Republicans Release Health Plan Or Something

After all these years, the GOP has finally released their full repeal and replace plan. By “GOP”, I mean certain insiders who seem to have missed the mark. Here’s Paul Ryan’s statement

“Obamacare is rapidly collapsing. Skyrocketing premiums, soaring deductibles, and dwindling choices are not what the people were promised seven years ago. It’s time to turn a page and rescue our health care system from this disastrous law. The American Health Care Act is a plan to drive down costs, encourage competition, and give every American access to quality, affordable health insurance. It protects young adults, patients with pre-existing conditions, and provides a stable transition so that no one has the rug pulled out from under them.

“Working together, this unified Republican government will deliver relief and peace of mind to the millions of Americans suffering under Obamacare. This will proceed through a transparent process of regular order in full view of the public. I want to thank all of our members who have contributed their ideas, especially Chairman Walden and Chairman Brady, as well as Secretary Price and the Trump administration, for their commitment to keep this promise and get this right.”

Reading the entire bill, color me not impressed. Nor are many Republicans. Senator Rand Paul called it Obamacare Lite. Justin Amash referred to it as Obamacare 2.0. Many others are slamming the bill, as well.

Key talking points from the GOP are

  • Dismantles the Obamacare taxes (a thumbs up in the bill’s favor is getting rid of all the taxes)
  • Eliminate the individual and employer mandate penalties (more in a minute)
  • Prohibit health insurers from denying coverage (had to keep this. Should have had a section on insurers not drastically increasing premiums/deductibles or dumping people who’ve been paying for insurance for actually using it)
  • Help young adults access health insurance (keeping the part about staying on parent’s insurance till 26. Good idea)
  • Establish a Patient and State Stability Fund (entitlement time. But, this is still needed for the short term as Ocare is wiped away)
  • Modernize and strengthen Medicaid (Medicaid expansion. Still needed till Ocare is wiped away)
  • Empower individuals and families to spend their health care dollars the way they want and need by enhancing and expanding Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) (still need to get rid of all caps on these)
  • Help Americans access affordable, quality health care by providing a monthly tax credit—between $2,000 and $14,000 a year—for low- and middle-income individuals and families who don’t receive insurance through work or a government program. (some are calling this another entitlement, and that government is still too involved)

Back to the mandate penalties portion, there’s this (starts on page 61)

Obviously, the point here is to disincentivize those who would not have health insurance, then get sick and want to purchase. However, this is almost worse than the Ocare mandate. Let’s say you change jobs: the typical occurrence is that you are not eligible to sign up for the company health insurance until you’ve been there for 90 days. Sure, you could purchase COBRA for a month. It’s not cheap. What if you are out of work for several months or more? Can you afford more expensive insurance? For all intent purposes, this is a mandate and a penalty, just like with Obamacare.

If it was more like 6 months, or had a measure for waivers, it would be fine. Regardless, what this requires, per the legislation, is that you file a form with The Government stating you had insurance without a 63 day gap. Weren’t Republicans protesting against this kind of thing?

The employer mandate is wacked, though, as is the specific language for the individual mandate.

The NY Times has an interesting breakdown of what is kept, what’s changed, and what’s repealed.

How about that “Cadillac tax?” That is kept around

A number of Obamacare taxes would be repealed, including the Medical Device Tax and health insurance taxes, but the Cadillac tax would be restored after 10 years to comply with the Byrd Rule, allowing Republicans to pass the measure using budget reconciliation.

Of course, they can always wack that tax at some point in the future.

The plan would stop giving Planned Parenthood federal taxpayer money for one year. This is silly. It alienates certain GOP squishes, like Susan Collins, while being nothing more than patronizing Republican voters, as it is only one year. Planned Parenthood makes enough money on their own as a private business, and shouldn’t be subsidized by the federal government. Instead, they could have done something like reimbursing for services rendered, except for abortion.

Speaking of abortion, the bill itself pretty much starts out by diving in to the abortion debate and stating that federal money will not be used for abortions, except in certain cases, such as rape, incest, and the health of the mother. Health exclusions do not include “I want to continue partying and having irresponsible sex, so I’m sad.”

Right now, overall, this plan is not particularly good. Is it better than Ocare? Yes. Does it fully repeal Ocare? Yes. Does it involve the government in our health insurance decisions? Yes. Mandate and penalty? Yes. Does it utterly forget about other GOP ideas, like allowing cross state purchasing of health insurance? Sure does. Does it forget to create a pathway to get people out of the Ocare exchanges and into private insurance in an orderly fashion? Yes. Does it reduce the things that government requires insurance plans to offer? Only back to pre-Ocare days.

Is this a work in progress or what the House and Senate will be forced to vote on? We’ll see. Now that it is out, the usual pattern is to tweak proposed legislation. We’ll have to see if this happens.

UPDATE: Trump tweets

This jibes with some rumbles I’m hearing, in that the bill was crafted in a manner so that it can be pushed through the Senate on a 50+1 vote in a manner that would do away with any sort of filibuster, perhaps reconciliation, in the same way Ocare was passed. Once it is in place, there are other bills which will institute more free market solutions which minimize federal government involvement in our health insurance and health care.

Of course, this is the GOP. Can we trust the Establishment to do this?

Crossed at Right Wing News.

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86 Responses to “House Republicans Release Health Plan Or Something”

  1. Rev.Hoagie® says:

    If you actually thought abortion was murder you’d do more than whine online, hypocrite.

    How do you know what gitarcarver does when he’s not online to support anti abortion causes, mothers seeking help and adoptions or unwanted children? At my church my wife and I are part of a support group that matches pregnant women who don’t want the baby but who are willing to carry to term if they have someone to take the child with willing families. Perhaps gitarcarver does that. Or even just donates to the cause of adoption or other alternatives to abortion. It’s certainly better than rooting for death like you.

    No, calling abortion “murder” only reveals your abject hypocrisy.

    Actually asshole, calling the killing of a baby “choice” is abject hypocrisy. It’s not a “choice”, it’s a PERSON.

    If I thought children were being murdered I would try to stop it. Yet, anti-abortionists rely on politicians to do the hard work for them.

    Exchanging the word “murder” for “abortion” seems to bother you Jeffery. And I’d bet if you “thought” children were being murdered (which they obviously are you just won’t say the word cause they aren’t dying of natural causes) you’d do as much for them as you are currently dong about housing and feeding and bringing into your home all those immigrants you’re so fond of……as long as the rest of us middle class guys are picking up the tab.

    #ToSeeAHypocriteLookInTheMirror

  2. gitarcarver says:

    If you actually thought abortion was murder you’d do more than whine online, hypocrite.

    And of course, I do more than just discuss the issue online. So once again, in a misguided attempt to try and dismiss the truth via some warped ad hominem attack, you show yourself to not only be ignorant, but incapable of actually debating an issue.

    According to you,….

    I have never cited any such statistic and you know it. Once again, a lie from you.

    If I thought children were being murdered I would try to stop it.

    In that you support the murder of children, this too is a lie from you.

    Three lies and you’re out.

    No need to discuss this anymore with you as your entire premise is based on lies and fantasies within your mind.

  3. Jeffery says:

    Cowards AND hypocrites AND liars, oh my!

    Murder. You swear up and down that babies are being murdered under your noses and yet you look the other way. You won’t sacrifice any of your comforts to stop murder?

    Pick up a weapon and stop the murders, otherwise, how do you live with yourselves? Oh that’s right, you’re cowards AND hypocrites. And liars.

    All the evidence points to you not believing that abortion is murder, but it’s just another thing those of your ilk dislike. Abortion irks you, gays irk you, Muslims irk you, Mexicans irk you.

  4. Zachriel says:

    Rev.Hoagie®: At that time (1966) many senior civil rights workers were concerned about the attempt of the communist inspired abortion movement to intertwine with the Black Civil Rights movement and informed the leaders including MLK of the dangers.

    Your claim concerned Margaret Sanger, who had half a century to implement whatever conspiracy theory you ascribed to “her intent”.

    Rev.Hoagie®: But she definitely was both a eugenicist and a racist.

    Lincoln was a racist. So? Your suggestion was that Sanger was intent on eliminating the black race.

    Rev.Hoagie®: One of her most famous quotes is: The most merciful thing that a family does to one of it’s infant members is to kill it”.

    Taking people out of context doesn’t make for a valid argument. Let’s try an experiment. Can you explain the context and why Sanger may have written those words?

    Rev.Hoagie®: We recognize the need for medically necessary pregnancy termination and you are just being ingenuous.

    Some do. Some don’t.

    Rev.Hoagie®: since this is a Republic the people of each state would decide. I would acquiesce to the result.

    Well, in the U.S. republic, the Supreme Court, as constituted under the U.S. Constitution, has said that government is limited in its powers with regards to restricting abortion previability.

    Rev.Hoagie®: Actually asshole, calling the killing of a baby “choice” is abject hypocrisy.

    You have already indicated that killing a zygote in vitro is not abortion.

    • Rev.Hoagie® says:

      Zachriel, you’re basically rewording and regurgitating. I’m not going down that rabbit hole with you. I am man enough to admit not permitting women to kill their babies as birth control denies them that “choice”. Are you man enough to admit that an abortion kills a baby, not a whale, not a fly and not a Cadillac?

      BTW, I did not admit killing a zygote in vitro was not abortion. I said what my gut feels.

      Pick up a weapon and stop the murders, otherwise, how do you live with yourselves? Oh that’s right, you’re cowards AND hypocrites. And liars.

      My, my, my. Well bless your li’l heart. You really are batshit crazy aren’t you? Coward! Hypocrites! Liars! Oh my! You really got us there Skinsuit. You are for killing defenseless little people at their most vulnerable and we are the cowards? You big brave baby killer you. And you won’t take into your home the immigrants you want to bring into our country but you want us to pay for them but you’re the self confessed millionaire and we are hypocrites? And you lied about your Vietnam service while I served three years in Nam was wounded twice and have Bronze Star with a “V” yet we are the liars.

      Projection has completely left your ability to be rational a wreak.

      #ToSeeACowardHypodriteAndLiarLookInTheMirror Hahahahaha

      **

      Well, in the U.S. republic, the Supreme Court, as constituted under the U.S. Constitution, has said that government is limited in its powers with regards to restricting abortion previability.

      Just as an aside Zachriel, I previously noted that just because the killing Jews, gypsies, the handicapped etc. was legal in Germany does not make it moral or right. One cannot believe in being a moral, compassionate and ethical man if he believes in killing tiny babies on demand. He just can’t. Live with it. It’s the blot on your soul like that on the souls of the German people.

  5. gitarcarver says:

    There is no point to responding to a rage filled rapist like you Jeffery whose only purpose in life is to spread your hate.

  6. Jeffery says:

    Explain your rape logic again please, LOL.

    At least I’m not a convicted molester like you.

  7. Zachriel says:

    Rev.Hoagie®: Are you man enough to admit that an abortion kills a baby, not a whale, not a fly and not a Cadillac?

    Clearly it kills a human embryo or fetus.

    Rev.Hoagie®: BTW, I did not admit killing a zygote in vitro was not abortion. I said what my gut feels.

    We can’t help it if you can’t clarify your views. So what is your position? Are fertility clinics engaged in child endangerment? And if new parents discard their unused embryos from fertility treatment, are they complicit in murder?

    Rev.Hoagie®: I previously noted that just because the killing Jews, gypsies, the handicapped etc. was legal in Germany does not make it moral or right.

    Agreed. Yet, you were willing to leave it to the states to decide.

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