(NationalSentinel) Health Care Reform: A leading Republican senator says the House may as well redo their current version of Obamacare repeal because what they’ve come up with so far is a non-starter in the upper chamber.
“House health-care bill can’t pass Senate w/o major changes,” he tweeted from his @TomCottonAR account.
“To my friends in the House: pause, start over. Get it right, don’t get it fast.”
He also said Republicans “shouldn’t act like Dems did in O’care” and pass something so quickly, without thought, that the next ‘reform effort’ - which some are already dubbing “RINOCare” - will be just as bad, the Washington Examiner noted.
“No excuse to release bill Mon night, start voting Wed. With no budget estimate!” he added.
House conservatives are demanding a full repeal and replace of Obamacare, like they campaigned for during the last election. But GOP leaders in both chambers say that version won’t pass in the Senate, where 60 votes are needed; Republicans only have 52 seats in the upper chamber.
But again, that’s only if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., doesn’t get creative and repeal Obamacare the same way Democrats passed it - on a budget reconciliation vote that required only a simple majority.
That there is a fight coming over repeal and replace of O-care is not wholly unexpected; Democrats are still arguing that the law is working “just fine” and “as planned,” though that’s clearly delusional and extremely partisan, given that we know Obamacare has raised premiums, raised out of pocket expenses, and left tens of millions of Americans scrambling to find ways to maintain coverage every month.
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What galls most Americans is that the federal government - nay, Democrats who passed this monstrosity - are under the arrogant presumption that federal bureaucrats, and not citizens themselves, should be making health care and health coverage choices. That’s what Obamacare does; it imposes a minimum level of coverage as a matter of law on everyone, including goofy provisions like requiring men to carry obstetrical coverage.
But then again, as long as the U.S. government is the country’s biggest single purchaser of health services - via Medicare, Medicaid, the Veterans Administration and so on - Congress will insist upon the federal government having an outsized role in how, and how much, it spends on coverage and for services. So anyone hoping for the government to completely be cut out of the equation here is hoping for something that will never happen.
Therefore, it behooves Congress to find a reasonable fix. That means legislation that protects the government’s ability to get the best deals it can for taxpayers footing the bill for federal health benefits, while still a) ensuring providers are not so badly undercut they can no longer provide services to federal health beneficiaries; and b) enabling competitive market forces to flourish in the private industry so that consumers who are paying for their own coverage are not priced out of the market.
This can be done because in the past, it was being done. There was a time before Obamacare when the market forces and government pay-out schemes balanced out rather nicely.
But either way, we cannot expect this process to go quickly, regardless of what legislation was offered and passed recently; remember, the last repeal bill Congress sent to Obama, who was never going to sign it. Now that it’s for real, the GOP needs to get it right.