If you were one of those people like me who thought the GOP’s failed attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare was dead in the water, think again.
It wasn't that long ago that we thought the effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act died once and for all in the Senate, but it’s not so.
Like a bad penny, the fight to dismantle the legacy of former President Barack Obama just won’t go away. It continues to rise from the ashes with new names and subtle word changes, and hang around like a cold sore.
We thought Republicans like Senators Rand Paul, John McCain, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski—who voted against the bill—had succeeded in keeping their colleagues from passing bad legislation that would leave 20 million Americans without affordable health insurance options.
We breathed a sigh of relief and began to focus on other things like the Trump-Russia investigation, the devastating hurricanes that wreaked havoc in Texas, Louisiana, Florida and the Caribbean Islands. and the earthquake that rocked Mexico this week. While we were looking at the wreckage, Republican Senators met quietly to hash out a new scheme to sway more votes their way.
The new plan is called Graham-Cassidy (named after Republican Senators Lindsay Graham and Bill Cassidy), and it is now being dangled—with a few perks for Alaska—in front of Murkowski. Paul is still a solid no, and so are McCain and Collins.
Graham-Cassidy was introduced just last week, and has picked up stream in the Senate within just a few days. It essentially deconstructs all of the major programs created by the Affordable Care Act, gathers up the money and hands it over to states to run their own health care programs.
It gets rid of both the subsidies that help people buy individual health insurance policies and the reimbursements to insurance companies for offering price breaks on copayments and deductibles to the lowest-income customers. Republicans have until September 30 to get it passed.
Republicans won’t stop until health care goes back to the days when insurance companies could do whatever they wanted to consumers and the only option available to low-income people was trips to hospital emergency rooms.
Let’s keep our eyes on this one, and keep the pressure on Republicans. We can’t afford to wake up one day in the near future and find we no longer have the coverage we need.
This terrible health care bill that Republicans want to use to line the pockets of millionaires in the form of tax cuts has been resurrected…just in time for Halloween. Time to get to work and slay this two-headed monster.