Monday, January 09, 2017

Republicans Suddenly See Huge Cost Savings in Obamacare

Wait, NOW a Republican is speaking up about the $9 trillion-plus savings of "Obamacare"? It was actually called the AFFORDABLE Care Act for a reason. People (like my parents) who continue to oppose something they know nothing about based on second-hand anecdotes are bad enough -- of course the ACA isn't perfect. But for Republican lawmakers to spend seven years trashing President Obama when they really knew this law was helping millions of Americans AND cutting the U.S. debt is beyond the pale.

Here's the thing: There is no way to "repeal and replace" the ACA with something "better." The law was ALREADY thought through at length, and given the for-profit insurance industry we have combined with our refusal to go single-payer, this was the best we could do. But instead of building upon it and tweaking to IMPROVE it, Republicans in Washington and especially GOP governors have spent the past seven years chipping away at it so they could "prove" it doesn't work that well -- and make no mistake, it's been dealt multiple setbacks -- yet it's still better than anything they can come up with.

It's soul-crushing to think of where we would be today if all politicians had worked toward making the Affordable Care Act work at its best. (Even ultra-rightwing Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder is raving about the positive outcomes from the Medicaid expansion, which so many other state leaders refuse to accept.) But sadly, most Republicans and many moderates could only see the health law as a "handout to brown people," instead of boost to all Americans.

Meanwhile ...

Everyone knew "Benghazi" was an attempt to discredit Hillary Clinton. But when "email" somehow caught on fire, they dropped it like security at an embassy. What is this latest scheme really all about? Republicans with a hardon for Israel no matter how out of shape she gets want to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, even though everyone knows doing so would effectively end any possibility of a two-state solution given that Palestine also considers the city to be its own. How to solve this debate? Threaten to cut off security at all embassies, of course.

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