By Gary P Jackson
I have to admit being a tad bit skeptical here, as this story comes from Politico not exactly the best source for truthyness, but somehow it’s sounds exactly what the weak Republican “good old boy” establishment would do.
According to Politico, Speaker of the House John Boehner and his band of merry men are preparing for life after the Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of ObamaCare. It appears that either way, whether the legislation stands or is stricken down in total, the GOP is looking to keep the “good parts” of the legislation intact.
Let me help these gentlemen out. There are no “good parts” of ObamaCare. None.
House Republican leaders are quietly hatching a plan of attack as they await a historic Supreme Court ruling on President Barack Obama’s health care law.
If the law is upheld, Republicans will take to the floor to tear out its most controversial pieces, such as the individual mandate and requirements that employers provide insurance or face fines.
If the law is partially or fully overturned they’ll draw up bills to keep the popular, consumer-friendly portions in place — like allowing adult children to remain on parents’ health care plans until age 26, and forcing insurance companies to provide coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. Ripping these provisions from law is too politically risky, Republicans say.
The post-Supreme Court plan — a ruling should come in June — has long been whispered about inside House leadership circles and among the House’s elected physicians but is now being discussed with a larger groups of lawmakers, showing that Republicans are aggressively preparing for a big-time health care debate in the heat of an election-year summer.
On Tuesday, the major options were discussed during a small closed meeting of House Republican leaders, according to several sources present.
Then on Wednesday, Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) gave the entire House Republican Conference a preview of where the party is heading. His message: “When the court rules, we’ll be ready.”
But Boehner warned that they’ll relegislate the issue in smaller, bite sizes, rather than putting together an unwieldy new health care bill.
“If all or part of the law is struck down, we are not going to repeat the Democrats’ mistakes,” Boehner said, according to several sources present. “We have better ideas on health care — lots of them. We have solutions, of course, for patients with pre-existing conditions and other challenges.”
The plan represents an aggressive posture from House Republicans. It seeks to shelter them from criticism from the left that they’re leaving uninsured Americans out to dry. Aides caution the plans could still be changed — but this outline, confirmed by several sources with direct knowledge of the planning, represents the broad sketch of what’s likely to come this summer.
[ …. ]
That’s why Republicans would try to replace some of the consumer-friendly parts of the plan — they don’t want it to seem like they’re leaving millions of Americans out to dry. They’ll look to protect some of the law’s most popular provisions, such as allowing people to stay on their parents’ insurance until 26 and forcing insurance companies to provide coverage to those with pre-existing conditions. They also want to keep the Medicare “donut hole” closed — essentially they don’t want seniors paying sky-high costs for prescription drugs.
Pushing these small bills helps them avoid the “angst of the electorate that ‘you followed Obamacare with some other bill no one has read,’” said Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.), one of the House’s elected physicians.
But even with those insurance industry reforms — which poll well with the public — Republicans could run into resistance from conservatives, who want to repeal the entire health care law and leave nothing in its place.
“I don’t want any vestige of Obamacare left in law,” Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) said. “Not one particle of DNA.”
Before they even put together a bunch of piecemeal health care bills, Republicans would have to overcome their own differences.
For example, Georgia Rep. Tom Price’s health care legislation — perhaps the most comprehensive plan — does not require insurance companies to accept everyone regardless of their expensive medical conditions. But that provision is one of the health reform law’s most popular pieces — and has been embraced by a broad swath of other Republicans.
The other challenge for Republicans is purely political — they’d have to coordinate their health care message with Mitt Romney, the party’s presidential nominee, and want to avoid an intraparty brawl over health care as the party heads into its summer convention.
So far, Romney’s health plans have tracked closely with what House Republicans have pursued. The former Massachusetts governor’s Medicare reform plans is similar to the latest Medicare plan proposed by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).
Again, Politico is using it’s time honored trick of quoting unnamed sources, but there is also some truth here.
If these Republicans are indeed looking to keep any part of ObamaCare, they are risking everything. Not just the presidency, but control of Congress as well.
Let’s face it, the base of the Republican Party does not trust Mitt Romney. They know full well that Romney, not some random democrat, was the father of socialized medicine in America. They also know that Romney advisers played a part in the creation of ObamaCare.
Romney has repeatedly promised to repeal ObamaCare, if it’s not thrown out by the Court, but he has yet to apologize for the RomneyCare disaster he created in Massachusetts. Many don’t believe Romney’s promise.
With talk of somehow allowing parts of ObamaCare to survive, just how do you think the American people, who overwhelmingly want ObamaCare dead and buried, are going to react?
The distrust of Romney is only going to grow, as well as the anger that already exists toward the less than effective Republican leadership.
There are some Conservatives, like Iowa’s Steve King who get it. Nothing should be left of ObamaCare. It should be scrubbed from all memory. But it seems he may be in the minority. Let’s not forget the last time the GOP establishment had complete control of Washington, Congress and the White House, we got Medicare Part D, and yet another unfunded mandate.
There are already risk pools for those with preexisting conditions. Yeah, the coverage is expensive, but it’s there. There is always the option of buying, and keeping health insurance before you need it, and thus being covered, if one doesn’t want to pay extremely high insurance rates.
It makes no business sense whatsoever to allow a person who has decided to remain uninsured, to then purchase insurance AFTER they need it. It’s like buying car insurance AFTER you wrap it around a tree and expecting to have repairs made under the coverage. Ain’t gonna happen, nor should it.
As for keeping “children” under the age of 26 on their parents insurance. Seriously?
If you are 26 years old, you are an adult. You can legally drive a car, join the Army, and drink booze. At 26 you should also have gainful employment and be on your way toward making your own life. You can pay for your own damned insurance!
I know tens of millions of people are out of work [including those under 26 years of age] thanks to Obamanomics, but presumably Mitt Romney and a Republican Congress will help create conditions that change the current situation.
If these so-called Republican “leaders” want to know how it’s done, how about they look towards the Lone Star State.
We got it right here in Texas. Our health care reform started with tort reform. Texas used to be the lawsuit capital of the country. Every ambulance chaser out there set up shop here. That is no longer the case.
In Texas doctors can concentrate on patient care rather than running multitudes of unnecessary tests for the purpose of covering their butts. Unnecessary tests that make health care more expensive.
The results speak for themselves. Texas has great health care, and nearly 10,000 doctors have relocated to the state, because of the patient centric, rather than lawyer centric, environment.
The Trial Attorney lobby is strong in Washington. Worse, many lawmakers are themselves, attorneys, and sympathetic to their brethren. [and the cash donations they make]
This situation has created an atmosphere that is favorable to attorneys, and makes it highly unlikely Congress will ever do much to stop these bloodsuckers who have caused much of the rise in cost of health care over the years.
The bottom line is this: The Federal Government has no authority to create health care plans such as ObamaCare. Government’s only role is to protect the citizens from unfair practices. In this it has failed.
We all know the real answers. Aggressive and comprehensive tort reform, and allowing health insurance to be sold across state lines, will do more to make health care affordable and more available to a broader group of people. Not micromanaging it from Washington.
Texas proves the free market works, as long as the free market is allowed to operate without outside interferences like overly litigious patients and the ambulance chasing attorneys they hire.
If the Politico report is even remotely true, the Republican Party is about to commit political suicide. They are about to lose the whole thing.
Instead of cow-towing to the biased media, and democrat troublemakers, Speaker Boehner and the rest of the GOP better grow a set and start listening to the American people, or it’s all over for them.
We, The People, are fed up.
Maybe, instead of replacing ObamaCare with the GOP version, it’s time to replace the GOP leadership!