The Republican efforts in health care can only be described as failures and broken promises. After not bringing up the Affordable Health Care Act for a vote, Speaker Paul Ryan seemingly threw in towel saying, “Obamacare is the law of the land” and will remain so “for the foreseeable future.” The President has had an even more troublesome reaction. He has indicated he will seek out Democratic support, saying that he never said he would repeal the law. He then accused the Freedom Caucus and other opponents of the AHCA of saving Planned Parenthood.
Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 26, 2017
That is akin to saying if you do not vote for a 2,000 omnibus spending bill that you voted not to fund the Defense Department and therefore hate the military.
Furthermore, he has said another potential plan would be to let Obamacare “explode.” This seems to be a common position among some. The reasoning being that if we do not touch Obamacare, it will still be the Democrats’ fault.
Too many have looked at the map and see that Democrats only have a monopoly control of government in four very blue states and think that it will last forever. If you think voters will settle for “Democrats ruined it” in 2018 after giving the Republicans control of the White House and both houses of Congress, you are lying to yourself. All your generic Democrat has to ask is, “Yeah, the Affordable Care Act isn’t perfect, but what did you do about?”
In 2009 people were writing the Republican Party’s obituary. In 2010 they were back in control of the House of Representatives. If Republicans fail to address the problems voters elected them to fix, they will give Democrats another chance, and good luck repealing Obamacare with that three phase plan with Speaker Pelosi or Majority Leader Schumer.
Another point that needs to be made about letting entitlements “collapse under their own weight.” This is not how entitlements work. They do not collapse, they just get bigger, more expensive, more complicated, and more addictive to the people who depend on them. What government program in the history of government programs has collapsed “under its own weight?” There is a reason why Ronald Reagan said that the closest thing to eternal life on earth is a government program.
Those who supported the AHCA were quick to blame the Freedom Caucus. On Saturday the Wall Street Journal ran the headline “The Obamacare Republicans.” According to the WSJ, these “Obamacare Republicans” are not the “moderates” who have bought into the left’s position that the government should have a large role in healthcare, but “the conservative establishment.”
But much of the current conservative establishment profits from fanning resentments, not governing. Legislative compromises don’t help Heritage Action raise money for its perpetual outrage machine. An earlier generation of leaders at Heritage understood that the goal of winning elections was to achieve something. The current leaders seem happy with failure.
Yes, that is it. Those of us who looked at the AHCA and saw nothing but broken promises, other forms of mandates, and the maintaining of regulations that have caused premiums to skyrocket are only interested in “fanning resentments” or raising money.
Apparently the WSJ’s definition of governing includes passing legislation regardless of the contents of that legislation in order “to achieve something.” Wanting “to achieve something” is how we got into this mess in the first place. Trump, Ryan, and the overwhelming majority of Congressional Republicans are ones who failed to live up to their promises and that would make it the WSJ, not conservatives, who are “happy with failure.”
Republicans promised to repeal Obamacare, not to try and tinker with it only to ultimately give up. Utah Senator Mike Lee has thrown them a lifeline if they choose to take it.
The idea that the AHCA was the best the Republicans could come up with after having seven years to plan for this moment insults the intelligence of those who voted for them believing they would repeal the law. The unfortunate truth is that many conservatives want to hold onto the image of the 2012 version of Paul Ryan, the one that was the Vice Presidential nominee with the Medicare plan, but now it’s 2017 and it is time to deal with reality.
Trump also deserves a lot of the blame for this, and while it is no fun to say “We told you so,” but “We told you so.” Congressional Republicans should send an actual repeal bill to the President’s desk without his input and force him to sign it. Let us not forget Trump is the man who in the Republican Primary praised both Canadian and British style health care.