Thursday, June 29, 2017
Why Democrats Won't Now Work With GOP on Health Insurance
Sen. Mitch McConnell is trying to scare his stubborn fellow senators into geting on board with his version of a bill to repeal/replace Obamacare. His threat is that if they don't give him enough GOP votes he'll just have to work with the Democrats to pass his bill. McConnell warns Trump, GOP on health bill failure - POLITICO
Big problem, Mitch: the Democrats aren't interested in working on your bill. After it dies and has been dragged away, they'll work with the GOP on fresh new ground.
Sounds harsh? No, it's just sensible. The Democrats have at least two and a half good reasons to take a hands-off position regarding your bill.
First, you don't mean what you say. They know that you are just using the threat of Democratic participation to coerce reluctant GOP senators into voting your way. These hold-out GOP senators are indeed afraid of Democratic participation. In the states of these recalcitrant senators and many of the other GOP senators, co-operating with Democrats is heresy. Senators who work with Democrats are toast at election time. That's a political climate you have helped father. Let's hope it now bites you on the you-know-what. So yours is an empty threat. You won't risk losing even more votes, those already on-board. Thus you are actually inviting the Democrats to a party that isn't going to happen, and the Democrats won't accept being shark bait in your duplicitous strong-arming of your ranks.
The second reason the Democrats want no part in tinkering with your very bad bill, Senator M, is that you and the Democrats can never agree on the issue most central to this bill: drastically cutting Medicaid. Be honest! You GOP don't actually want to reform health insurance but instead, under the guise of halth insurance reform, you want to cut Medicaid funding for elderly in nursing homes and for the poor in order to finance a big gift to the rich.
Under your conniving the $710 billion cut to Medicaid over 10 years is to be used to pay for a similar amount of tax cut for the rich. Further, this cut to Medicaid has to come before the tax measure. reform. Under Senate procedural rules, the money to balance your huge tax gift to the rich has to be ready and waiting, already identified, in order for your so-called tax reform bill to pass the Senate on a simple majority rather than a super-majority that would necessitate some Democratic votes. There are no Democrats conservative enough to vote for that tax gift to the rich. Therefore you are stuck with trying to get the Medicaid money now with just a simple majority vote.
(The LA Times says nearly $800 billion. Other media today have other amounts. "[T]he bill reduces Medicaid funding by almost $800 billion over 10 years compared with what would have been spent under Obamacare." Is Mitch McConnell trying to tank Trumpcare? - LA Times)
As for what's happening right now, there are no Democrats who will go along with your $710 billion cut to Medicaid. Democrats don't do what even Trump has called "mean" things. As the old saying goes, Democrats care about people; the GOP cares about money. The likelihood of some middle ground on this one doesn't come to mind. Heck, the GOP can't find a middle ground on it among themselves so as to get a couple of more GOP votes!
So why should the Democrats enter into a hopeless "bipartisan" effort with you, Senator McC, that will go nowhere, plus give you a chance to blame the Democrats for the failure?
And now the one-half a reason the Democrats won't work to help save your bill: The polls.
Yesterday four major polls reported American approval of the GOP bill has gone down through the crust of the earth. 12%, 16%, 17%, 24%. Even a majority of GOP hate the bill. Even a majority of Trump supporters hate it.
Why would anyone want to get involved in that? Especially when there's the hopeless stalemate about cutting Medicaid.
And get this straight, McConnell: bad polls or not for the bill, Democrats are not throwing 22 million people off their health insurance and cutting life-and-death aid to our old and our poor. Not now. Not ever.
That's not a raving liberal's point of view. The low polls I cited above show that almost all Americans oppose throwing the poor and the elderly over the cliff. Good for the American people!
In those poll numbers is the proof that America is truly great again!
Just like it always was.