When the dimensions of the Obamacare disaster started to appear, I wrote the
“A debate is underway among Republicans as to the best way to deal with the
dismantling of the health insurance policies of millions of Americans caused by
the implementation of the disastrous Affordable Health Care Act commonly
Some feel that Republicans should not contribute in any way with attempts to
“fix” aspects of Obamacare, leaving Democrats to face the consequences of their
folly. Others, including myself, believe that this would cause immense
damage to millions of Americans who have not yet lost their insurance, and
would be short-sighted and immoral.”
The basic immorality of the socialists now controlling the
Democratic Party has caused me to change my mind about this. They are trying to set a trap for us, and use the failings of the program that they, and only they, have created, to destroy their opponents. The only reasonable course is to support the “Repeal and Replace” effort.
GOP could be trapped by Democrat demands
to fix Obamacare
2014 will be the year Republicans are forced to deal with the
Obamacare Trap, helpfully set for them by the Democratic authors of the Affordable Care Act.
In 2009 and 2010, President Obama and
his party took a health care system in which 85 percent had insurance coverage,
and blew it up. Now, with Obamacare causing misery right and left, those same
Democrats are screaming, "You can't go back!"
The national health care scheme they designed
is so complex and has already embedded itself so deeply in the health care
system, they argue, that it can never be repealed. The only course now is for
lawmakers of both parties to "fix" Obamacare's problems.
The argument will be heard more and more as
the burdens imposed by Obamacare — cancelled policies, higher premiums, higher
deductibles, narrower doctor networks, restricted choices of prescription drugs
and more — become a reality for millions of Americans. The situation could
become even more politically charged if, as many experts expect, the burdens
that have so far beset those in the individual insurance market spread to the
small-group market and ultimately to the larger universe of all people who
receive coverage through their jobs.
such a scenario, Democrats will ratchet up their demands that Republicans join
them in "fixing" the law. They will condemn Republicans who declare
Obamacare beyond repair and decline to go along. And at the same time,
Democrats will steadfastly refuse to back down in their full support of the law
they — and they alone — passed that is causing all the trouble. The blame, they
will argue, lies with the GOP.
It's an astonishingly brazen strategy. And it
Already, some Republicans appear to be
wavering on the insistence that repeal must be the first step in minimizing the
damage done by Obamacare. In a weird irony, the more serious the problems of
Obamacare become, the less likely some Republicans are to demand repeal.
"It's so bad that you just can't let it
happen," says one well-connected GOP strategist. "My sense is, at
least at this point, it's gotten so bad that as much as you don't want to fix
Obamacare, you just can't let the impact of this happen."
Says a House Republican aide: "Measures
that provide Americans some form of relief from the most painful parts of
Obamacare don't have to begin with repeal."
Of course, many ways Republicans would want to
provide Obamacare relief — Rep. Fred Upton's keep-your-health-plan proposal,
for example — won't win Democratic support. But the more fixes the GOP signs on
to, the more incentive Democrats have to keep stonewalling all calls for
House Republicans are (finally) uniting behind an actual repeal-and-replace
3121 is the work of the Republican Study Committee, and,
like another effort by GOP Rep. Tom Price, would both repeal Obamacare and
enact a package of Republican health care reforms. It would address the tax
unfairness of purchasing health coverage for those who are not covered at work;
the problem of pre-existing conditions; the purchase of coverage across state
lines and excessive medical malpractice settlements.
far, 117 House Republicans have signed onto the bill. But 115, including the
House GOP leadership, have not. And it is not clear whether passing an
Obamacare alternative — one that begins with repeal — is really a priority for
Boehner and other top House Republicans.
For example, on "Meet the Press"
Sunday, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan expressed
satisfaction with the recent budget deal because Republicans "don't want
to have shutdown
drama so that we can focus on replacing Obamacare."
That sounds like Ryan wants to pass an alternative. But while Ryan encourages
Republicans to come up with "conservative solutions," there's no
evidence he wants to throw his weight behind any one bill.
In fact, in private discussions, House
Republicans stress their differences over the details of an Obamacare
alternative. For example, there's no agreement on precisely how to fix the tax
inequity for people who don't receive health coverage at work. There are
similar disagreements over all sorts of other points of policy. "Getting
unanimity is a tall order for a divided, leaderless party," says the GOP
Meanwhile, Obamacare threatens to turn into an
enormous, rolling disaster. While Americans suffer, Republicans could find
themselves arguing with each other, hung up on details, divided over the next
step and under pressure to endorse Democratic fixes to a law they never supported
— in other words, deep inside the Obamacare Trap.