Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Guess what it costs to vote to repeal ObamaCare?

I heard a plausible estimate today that it has cost about $2 million each of the 33 times the Republican Congress has voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act (which they invariable call ObamaCare because most of their voters aren't heavy on complicated thinking), knowing full well that the Senate would never pass it and the President would always veto it even if it did.

So that's $66 million in yours and my taxes devoted to building a legislative bridge to nowhere. I can think of better uses for $66 million of our money. Can't you, regardless of whether you're liberal, centrist, conservative, or a fringer?

The biggest point this makes is that the Republican Party's alternative to the Affordable Care Act is nothing. They haven't been passing an alternative healthcare reform bill designed to supersede the ACA. So now they've made their legislative healthcare agenda clear: their alternative to the ACA is nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch-o.

Then their patrons, the health insurance (until you need it) industry, get to return to:
a. denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions.
b. forcing seniors to pay the highest prices any citizen of any country on Earth pays for prescription drugs.
c. forcing college-age offspring off their parents' healthcare plans.
d. enabling employers to deny covering preventive health services for women.
e. enabling health insurance providers to continue their death panels in the form of setting lifetime caps for medical care.
f. enabling employers to continue the lucrative practice of finding and using any excuse to not just deny continuing coverage for anyone who gets really sick, but to sue people they dump for what the insurance company paid out for healthcare up to that point. It has been proven that the healthcare insurance industry employs substantial staffs of doctors and researchers to do just this, as they should if profit is their only goal (and the GOP says profit should be the only goal of any private company, since they're devout social Darwinists).
g. enabling freeloaders who'd never paid for healthcare insurance to avail themselves of doctor and hospital care when they're indigent, with the costs passed on to the rest of us (which Governor Romney said was contrary to the free market six years ago).

What wrong with the status quo? It's unsustainable. Anyone who has studied the current system, regardless of their political flavor, knows this. Yet this is the GOP plan: the status quo.

Governor Romney claims he has a detailed plan. I doubt it, but say he does. So? He's not running for King and he's not running for Congress. Only Congress can create and pass legislation. They could model a healthcare bill after Romney's supposed plans, but they choose not to. They choose to simply repeal the only healthcare reform bill passed in a century of trying by everyone back to Teddy Roosevelt, and replacing it with nothing.

So when they reiterate the mantra "Repeal and replace" they're being honest about the former and lying about the latter. It's Repeal, pure and simple.

Yet another example of how radicalized the GOP has become--and, in its efforts to root out every single scrap of Democratic legislation since the New Deal, it has become nihilistic--a legislative lynch mob, full of torches and pitchforks and ropes to throw over the nearest tree branch...

No comments: