Battleground states, including Florida, Arizona, North Carolina and Ohio, saw dramatic increases in the number of uninsured.
Wendell Potter, the former health insurance executive turned consumer advocate, says that President Trump’s executive order targeting Obamacare could encourage many small businesses to merely seek the appearance of offering employee health insurance, in order to attract workers.
This week could be decisive in determining how many of the over 20 million Americans and five million Californians who gained health insurance under the Affordable Care Act will be allowed to keep it.
Co-published by International Business Times
California’s GOP Congressional delegation has formed the backbone of Trump’s legislative efforts, marching largely in lockstep with the president’s agenda, even in districts where such Trump priorities as Obamacare repeal might adversely affect large numbers of their constituents.
Under the American Health Care Act passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last week, California’s half million in-home care recipients, who include the elderly, the blind and the disabled, could be facing big cuts in services.
Whatever aspirins are prescribed by the Senate, as it prepares its version of the American Health Care Act, they may not make Americans’ health-care headaches go away.
The GOP’s new American Health Care Act looked bad enough. Then its fine print revealed an attack on the medical coverage of millions of workers that one expert said wasn’t a loophole, but “a gaping chest wound.”
The former national campaign manager of Health Care for America Now looks at the winners and losers in the Republicans’ American Health Care Act. BY BILL RADEN
Days before House Republicans presented their American Health Care Act, health-policy experts discussed the current Affordable Care Act’s dismantling during a panel that was part of the California Budget and Policy Center’s annual conference.
What exactly Trumpcare will be remains vague, but for the more than 50 percent of South L.A. that now relies on the state’s ACA Medi-Cal expansion for health coverage, the future is frighteningly uncertain.
Having failed to defeat the Affordable Care Act in Congress, to beat it back in the last election, to repeal it despite more than 80 votes in the House, to stop it in the federal courts, to get enough votes in the Supreme Court to overrule it and to gut it with outright extortion (closing the government and threatening to default on the nation’s debts unless it was repealed), Republicans are now down to their last ploy.
They are hell-bent on destroying the Affordable Care Act in Americans’ minds.
A document circulating among House Republicans (reported by the New York Times) instructs them to repeat the following themes and stories continuously: “Because of Obamacare, I Lost My Insurance.” “Obamacare Increases Health Care Costs.” “The Exchanges May Not Be Secure, Putting Personal Information at Risk.”
Every Republican in Washington has been programmed to use the word “disaster” whenever mentioning the Act,
In addition to serving as Senior Fellow for Health Care for the Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network, I am the Executive Director for my campus’ Roosevelt chapter. A few weeks ago at our general body meeting, I asked the crowd whether they had been talking with their friends about the Affordable Care Act and what these conversations sounded like. Did they know the basics: that in January, most Americans will be expected to either carry at least minimal insurance or pay an opt-out penalty? Do they know that they will be able to stay on their parents’ insurance until they are 26, if they so choose? Have they compared the prices of different options available for young adults versus the penalty?
The question meant to take up the first 10 minutes of our meeting turned into a full 40-minute discussion. As we scarfed down our pizza in true hungry college-student fashion,
More than any other public policy issue, health care is very personal. So it is not surprising that personal stories are a central battleground for the public perception of the Affordable Care Act. And it is increasingly clear that this battle will be fought through the prisms of class and race.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) would not have become law if it were not for the willingness of survivors of the nation’s health care mess – people who had lost loved ones, fought to get care after an insurance company denial, faced crippling medical costs – to tell their stories to members of Congress and the press. Many members of Congress voted for the bill, despite the political risk, because they were moved by personal encounters with constituents with compelling stories. Many of the most effective spokespeople during the legislative battle over the law were people whose lives and livelihoods had been threatened by our defective health coverage system.
There are good reasons why President Obama’s leading message on health care during the 2008 campaign, often repeated since, was “if you like your health insurance, you can keep it.” That message was created to overcome the fear-mongering that had blocked legislative efforts to make health care a government-guaranteed right in the United States for a century.
Our health is of central importance to our lives, deeply personal to our well-being and those of our loved ones. That concern has translated politically; for decades, people have told pollsters that health care is a top concern. It is why every 15 to 20 years – from 1912 to 2008 – the nation has returned to a discussion about whether and how the government should guarantee health coverage, the debate rising phoenix-like from one spectacular defeat after another. A big reason for those defeats has been that opponents have exploited those deep feelings to scare the public about proposed reforms.
Republicans may not have succeeded in defunding the nations’ newest social insurance program, Obamacare, but they now are aiming at the foundational programs, Social Security and Medicare. And this time, they’ll have the President on their side. It would be a mistake for progressives to assume that a grand budget bargain will fall apart once again, even if that remains likely. Instead, we need to turn the debate from cutting social insurance to strengthening both the finances and benefits of both big retiree programs. The best way to do that is by championing simple, bold solutions.
In his post shutdown press conference, President Obama repeated his call for changes in Social Security and Medicare. His 2014 budget included cuts to benefits for both. That aligns him with House Speaker John Boehner, who called for savings in Social Security and Medicare during the shutdown battle. Senators from both parties have shown their willingness to support benefit cuts as part of a big budget deal.
The war isn’t over. It’s only a cease-fire.
Republicans have agreed to fund the federal government through January 15 and extend the government’s ability to borrow (raise the debt ceiling) through February 7. The two sides have committed themselves to negotiate a long-term budget plan by mid-December.
Regardless of what happens in the upcoming budget negotiations, it seems doubtful House Republicans will try to prevent the debt ceiling from being raised next February. Saner heads in the GOP will be able to point to the debacle Tea Partiers created this time around – the public’s anger, directed mostly at Republicans; upset among business leaders and Wall Street executives, who bankroll much of the GOP; and the sharply negative reaction of stock and bond markets, where the American middle class parks whatever savings it has.
The saner Republicans will also be able to point out that President Obama means it when he says he won’t ever negotiate over the debt ceiling.
“Will Work for Food.” How many times do we see these signs at most every street corner? For those of who are federal employees and who are also union representatives and officers, the time seems to be right for us to get out our Sharpies and make our own signs.
The last several years have seen my sisters and brothers in Social Security and other agencies continually being threatened with shutdowns and furloughs as a result of the lack of federal budgets or continuing resolutions, failure to raise the debt ceiling as well as the fiscal cliff. Now as of October 1, 2013 we are going to be shut down again.
In 1995, Social Security employees such as myself were called “non-essential” and sent home. After a press blitz, we were called at home told we were essential and should come back to work —
At the 1992 Republican National Convention, then Vice Presidential nominee Dan Quayle summed up his thoughts on taxing those with greatest wealth at higher rates with the line, “Why should the best people be punished?” This rare candor spotlights the beliefs still central in today’s economic policymaking.
Last week, House member Kevin Cramer (R-ND) invoked scripture to justify taking food from the mouths of babes, saying “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.” His colleague, Rep. Steve Southerland (R-FL) similarly declared, “work is a blessing.” Clearly, the economy is intended as far more than an aggregation of what we produce, purchase, consume and invest. We’re meant to see it as an instrument to impose a particular morality: to reward the good and punish the naughty.
Republicans would go further and have us believe the economy is an angry and vengeful God.
On ABC’s This Week, Newt Gingrich and I debated whether House Republicans should be able to repeal a law — in this case, the Affordable Care Act — by de-funding it. Here’s the essence:
GINGRICH: Under our constitutional system, going all the way back to Magna Carta in 1215, the people’s house is allowed to say to the king we ain’t giving you money.
REICH: Sorry, under our constitutional system you’re not allowed to risk the entire system of government to get your way.
Had we had more time I would have explained to the former Speaker something he surely already knows: The Affordable Care Act was duly enacted by a majority of both houses of Congress, signed into law by the President, and even upheld by the Supreme Court.
The Constitution of the United States does not allow a majority of the House of Representatives to repeal the law of the land by de-funding it (and threatening to close the entire government,