Sunday, March 1, 2015

Be Careful What You Wish For

Republicans, particularly governors and senators of red states who refused to create state insurance exchanges in protest of Obama's "tyranny", are realizing far too late just who is getting screwed here should King v Burwell turn into the end of subsidies for federal exchanges.

The loss of subsidies for millions of people would also put the Obama administration on the offense for the first time to protect its signature healthcare law.

A White House crusade against the GOP would mean a firestorm of accusations that the party is taking away care and endangering lives – building up for the 2016 election.

To avoid that situation, some Republicans are floating a stopgap that would keep the subsidies in place temporarily.

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) promised this week that he would introduce legislation extending the ObamaCare subsidies for 18 months after a court decision.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) hinted at a similar proposal earlier in the week, promising "a short-term solution” until a Republican can enter the White House.

The willingness to embrace the subsidies from two staunch ObamaCare foes is a major shift in tactics, signaling a growing sense of urgency within the party on the biggest court case of the year.

“I’m really, really shocked. We were all like, ‘whoa,’” one GOP Senate aide said of Hatch’s remarks about a short-term fix. “That is easily one of the most constructive things a Republican has said regarding King, ever.”

The problem, as always, the tea party hardliners in the GOP House who want to see their own constituent burn.

There’s no reason for us to stretch out the funding for an unconstitutional extension. There’s no reason to do that. It just puts more pressure on us to adopt more ObamaCare,” Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) told The Hill this week.

State lawmakers across the country, though, are seeking their own fallback plans. Nine states are in talks to keep subsidies by creating their own exchanges, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, which would make the state’s ObamaCare customers eligible for subsidies under the current law.

Democrats argue that Congress should simply tweak any language in ObamaCare that the justices rule unconstitutional. And the White House maintains that it has no plans to prevent the massive disruption that would be caused by the ruling.

With just four months until the Supreme Court’s ruling, some Republicans are warning that time is running out for the party’s long-sought alternative.

There is no Republican alternative to Obamacare.  There never will be.  8 million red state voters are going to lose their subsidies, lose their health insurance, and lose their peace of mind.  And they will only have the Republicans to blame.


Martin Pollard said...

As Alan Grayson once said, the Republican alternative now has been the Republican plan all along: "Don't get sick, and if you do, die quickly."

Horace Boothroyd III said...

When your opponent is drowning, throw him an anvil.

Sound tactics, but the question is how many innocent people are going to suffer and die because the Republicans are devoted to fanatical opposition to decent and affordable health care for the working poor.

Horace Boothroyd III said...

How some people, who claim to have leftist tendencies, can play footsie with these dead eyed libertarian ghouls is utterly beyond me. There is way more to life than free dope and no more wars: while these are admirable short term goals they do not feed the hungry or cure the sick or keep the crazies from taking over and gutting the legal system that keeps this nation civilized.

Horace Boothroyd III said...

That's hysterical, especially given the historical accident that Brown played a fascist thug in Starship Troopers: perhaps Zuesse merely grabbed the wrong end of the stick and is trying to beat people with it.

But his claims to be the Last Good Democrat, now that all fakes and liars and stooges have fallen by the wayside, is eerily reminiscent of the latest crop of anti vaccine lunatics to swarm the internets: they all begin with loving paeans to Science and sweet reason, before shifting gears to denounce random words for destroying the health of our children WHY WON'T YOU THINK OF THE INNOCENT CHILDREN YOU MONSTER!

Sigh. Has there ever been a moment in history when the reasonable people were not vexed by loons, and how could I get back to then?

Jado said...

"And they will only have the Republicans to blame."

Someone hasn't been paying attention. Republicans are never to blame. As evidenced by the voting record. There is no down side to killing Obamacare for the GOP - it is, and always has been, the Democrats who will swing for this if the GOP kills it. It's part of what's great about America; if you scream loud enough, you can finger a scapegoat. And the GOP can definitely scream...

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