I find myself increasingly ambivalent about the fate of the RyanCare bill. I don’t relish handing the media another reason for a 2 week news cycle bashing of the President; on the other hand this is not what I signed on for and I’m betting it’s not what you signed on for either.
President Trump and Congressional Republicans ran on “Repeal and Replace” not “Piecemeal and Reface.” If we wanted Obamacare-lite we could have voted for Hillary and the rest of the Democrats: they all ran on preserving Obamacare and Obama’s eponymous health care grab. Barry himself told us that it would be a personal insult if we let the R-words win and destroy his legacy legislation; let’s get on with it.
The Republicans won, remember? Presidency, House, Senate. So why is it so hard to deliver on this campaign promise? Who are they trying to appease? Surely no one who took the #SaveObamacare oath will ever vote for a Republican regardless of what they do or don’t do. And just as surely, those who voted for the R-words promise to “Repeal and Replace” Obamacare will hold them to account if they fail to deliver.
The current 3-Phase “Repeal and Replace” bill, “RyanCare,” being pushed by Rhinos and Republican leadership is a far cry from “Repeal.” If - and it’s an increasingly big if - it can pass the House it faces likely defeat in the Senate. Perhaps that’s a blessing; defeat in the House could check the R-word leadership hubris currently on display and perhaps even result in a bill that will actually “Repeal and Replace” Obamacare.
Aside from DJT, nobody on our side seems to know how to use power except for punishing their own. If we want to win, they have to start acting like Democrats; use the power that voters handed them and ignore the professional protestors who will never vote for any Republican anyway.
You know, this really isn’t that hard. Do I have to do everything for our Ruling Class? Alright then; here’s a simple plan that fulfills the “Repeal and Replace” promise in 2 easy steps that could be enacted simultaneously if the R-words were to miraculously grow a pair overnight. Alternatively they can do it in 2 phases, giving them time to grow a pair and allowing them to iron out all their differences in public. Imagine that: a replacement Healthcare Insurance Plan (HIP) plan where we’d actually know what’s in it before they passed it.
My plan repeals Obamacare entirely, effective December 31, 2018 for everyone unless replaced earlier by a new Health Care Insurance Plan (HIP). Further, my bill will immediately eliminate all mandates, taxes, penalties and coverage requirement minimums. It will continue the pre-existing condition mandate and allow children under 26 years of age to remain on their parents plan until 12/31/2018 or until replaced by a new HIP.
Specifically this is what we need our federal government to do:
- Repeal Obamacare entirely effective December 31, 2018 or upon the enactment of a replacement HIP law. Immediately eliminate all mandates, taxes, penalties and coverage requirement minimums. Continue the pre-existing condition mandate and allow children under 26 years of age to remain on their parents plan until 12/31/2018 or until replaced by a new HIP.
- Enact a replacement HCI law doing the following:
- Allow the purchase of health care insurance across state lines.
- Lower costs in Medicare & Medicaid
- Negotiate maximum price for prescription drugs as is done everywhere in the civilized world.
- Simplify Medicare by eliminating the absurd prescription “donut hole”
- Require insurance companies to allow individuals to purchase any plan the insurance company offers to anyone, including any group plan whether the purchaser is a member of the group or not.
- prohibit health care providers, including pharmacies and medical device providers from charging uninsured higher amounts for products and services than they charge insurance companies.
- Return Medicaid eligibility to pre-Obamacare standards, allowing states to establish different eligibility standards which would be self-funded by the state.
- Permit states to establish work related requirements, co-pays and deductibles for Medicaid eligibility.
- Allow taxpayers to receive a tax credit (not a refundable tax credit) for out of pocket health care and health care insurance costs including co-pays, co-insurance, deductibles.
- Increase tax credit for contributions to Health Savings Accounts (HSA) to $5,000 for an individual and remove the maximum limit on contributions. Remove all requirements that HSA participants be enrolled in any particular health insurance plan and allow HSA participants to enroll in any insurance plan of their choosing or not enroll in any plan at all.
And please, don’t tell me this can’t be done without 60 votes in the Senate. Implement the nuclear option and completely eliminate the filibuster immediately. The filibuster only works if you have the balls to make it benefit your side and it seems that only Democrats and Newt possess such a pair. Once it’s gone we can “Repeal and Replace” Obamacare and confirm Neil Gorsuch to SCOTUS within a week. Then we can move on to pass tax reform, build the border wall, actually reform immigration (I’m not talking amnesty or any of the amnesty-light plans), fix our bad trade deals and Make America Great Again! All this year!
Alternatively, they could just pass the Rand Paul Plan and run the same game plan.
If they fix the current mess that is Obamacare we don’t need no stinkin’ filibuster because Republicans would maintain a long term control of the White House and both houses of Congress. Too much to hope for? Probably, but I’m not tired of winning yet.