Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Last Call For Obamacare Rate Shock

2014 is the end of the Democrats!  Doom!  Total GOP domination!  Obamacare is a miserable failure!  Just look at New York, where individual premiums are being cut in half!

Wait, that's...what Obamacare is supposed to do.

State insurance regulators say they have approved rates for 2014 that are at least 50 percent lower on average than those currently available in New York. Beginning in October, individuals in New York City who now pay $1,000 a month or more for coverage will be able to shop for health insurance for as little as $308 monthly. With federal subsidies, the cost will be even lower.

Yep, that Obamacare law sure is a complete disaster, huh.
Supporters of the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act, credited the drop in rates to the online purchasing exchanges the law created, which they say are spurring competition among insurers that are anticipating an influx of new customers. The law requires that an exchange be started in every state.

“Health insurance has suddenly become affordable in New York,” said Elisabeth Benjamin, vice president for health initiatives with the Community Service Society of New York. “It’s not bargain-basement prices, but we’re going from Bergdorf’s to Filene’s here.”

“The extraordinary decline in New York’s insurance rates for individual consumers demonstrates the profound promise of the Affordable Care Act,” she added.

Administration officials, long confronted by Republicans and other critics of President Obama’s signature law, were quick to add New York to the list of states that appear to be successfully carrying out the law and setting up exchanges.

We’re seeing in New York what we’ve seen in other states like California and Oregon — that competition and transparency in the marketplaces are leading to affordable and new choices for families,” said Joanne Peters, a spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services.

And let's remember that competition in the free market has long, long been a Republican screaming point.  When President Obama actually put that into effect, they went bonkers.

The larger point here is that New York is a state that wants to make its state health insurance exchange work and doesn't have Republicans sabotaging it because Black President Is Tyrant or something.  It's amazing how, when given the opportunity to work, the program works as intended.

Once again, if Obamacare is such a failure, explain to me how New York has significantly more insurers coming into the state, wanting to offer more products, at far, far better prices.  The best part is rates for small businesses are going down too, AND people are going to get subsidies.

It's like the damn thing works when you want to make it work.

The Most Honest A Cheney's Ever Been

So in the great state of Wyoming, Liz Cheney has upset the apple cart, set it on fire, crushed the apples into flaming, dirty paste and then declared a scorched earth campaign versus all apple orchards with her decision to primary Republican Sen. Mike Enzi for no particular reason other than she really wants to be in the Senate.

If you were wondering why Liz Cheney feels the need to take out Sen. Mike Enzi (who is a remarkable senator inasmuch he's pretty much famous for just kind of being there) there's two reasons. First, Enzi is the ranking Republican on the Senate Health committee and didn't stop Obamacare or something, so that makes him MAXIMUM RINO. Second, and more importantly:  
To recap, Liz Cheney is trying to take Mike Enzi out because there's not enough GOP obstruction of President Obama among Senate Republicans. She's not running to represent the interests of the people of the Cowboy State in the United States Senate, she's not running to be an agent of change in what amounts to an ossified gentlemen's club, she's not running because the GOP needs more women in the Senate (and that's actually true) and she's certainly not running to see if Wyoming can earn its other long-forgotten state moniker, Equality State (and if she does because of her sister Mary, that won't last long the second President Obama agrees with her.)

She's running to stop the last two years of Barack Obama's second term. That's really the whole thing. That is her big reason for putting Enzi out to Wyoming's green pastures, because total obstruction is all that matters. You want to talk about sense of entitlement? Cheney decides the seat should be hers because of the purity of her rancor towards the President the GOP has been unable to stop, time and time again. Look, this is a person whose sole qualification for anything is "her dad was Vice-President". Based on that, she thinks Enzi should step aside so that she can scream at the President. Where does she even get off doing this in the first place?

But this is Liz Cheney we're talking about here, who burst onto the scene in 2009 playing footsie with the Birther movement, who has a serious problem telling the truth, and of course she has her backers among the "progressive left" who see her as a strong enough woman to end up in the White House someday. You know, like Sarah Palin.

Me, I'm going to enjoy the Republicans taking sides on Cheney versus Enzi and hoping Enzi decides to pull an Angus King just big enough to open the door for a Democratic opponent to squeak through. It's a lot to hope for, but it would be awesome if it happened. After all, Cheney has already dismissed Enzi as a factor in her race and is going straight for the Oval Office (in more ways than one.) That kind of hubris tends to get attention even from the most absent of fate-directing powers.

Meanwhile, I bet President Obama is having a pretty good laugh at the news that Republicans are still willing to eat their own in order to try to stop him.

Let the battle commence.

The Return Of The Honey Badger

Dem Senate majority leader Harry Reid actually pulled his filibuster move off, and broke the GOP's back on filibustering cabinet nominations.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) office confirms to ThinkProgress that a deal has been reached to avert the so-called “nuclear option” on what appear to be very favorable terms to Democrats. In a nearly unconditional surrender to Senate Democrats, a core group of Senate Republicans agreed to a deal that will confirm most of the nominees currently subject to Republican filibusters, and replace two nominees to a key labor agency. While the identity of those new nominees are, as yet, unknown, two Democratic Senate sources tell ThinkProgress that the new nominees to the National Labor Relations Board can be “any two we want,” so long as it is not the two people currently serving on the NLRB via recess appointments.

In return for a virtually complete capitulation to Democratic demands, Republicans get to postpone the question of whether filibusters can still exist for executive branch nominees. Last night, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) rejected an offer from Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to confirm the pending nominees if Reid agreed to take the nuclear option off the table, so Reid retains the option of changing the Senate Rules in the future if Republicans obstruct future nominees. Senate Republicans will also get to make the rhetorical point that they prevented two NLRB nominees whose recess appointments were called into question by a pair of court decisions handed down by five Republican judges from being confirmed to their seats on that agency.

Indeed, one of those seven nominees, acting Consumer Financial Protection Board head Richard Cordray, has been cleared through cloture with 71 votes and will be the first to get an up-or-down vote from the full Senate.

This is a full fold on the part of Mitch McConnell and the Senate GOP.

Welcome back, Harry "Honey Badger" Reid.  We've missed you.


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