Senate GOP face a Conundrum on Graham-Cassidy Healthcare Bill
If Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) follows through on his promise to put Graham-Cassidy ObamaCare repeal bill up for a vote this Wednesday, the GOP could find itself in a conundrum – win or lose, they lose.
One thing is clear; no one likes this bill. From Nursing groups to Doctors groups, healthcare and insurance companies to the average American, everyone seem to dislike the bill.
If the bill fails this week, the Republican Party faces a backlash from their hardcore supporters and sponsors who are angry that they cannot get anything done despite controlling the U.S. Senate, House and the White House. If it passes, millions of GOP supporters in Red States stand to lose their insurance coverage.
Its not just congressional Republicans who may face backlash either. President Donald Trump will as well. Since becoming U.S. President nearly nine months ago, he has not been able to get any meaningful bill passed through congress.
But don’t cry for the Republicans. They brought this on themselves.
When Democrats conceived ObamaCare, the idea was to expand healthcare for Americans and make it more affordable. Whether they archived both goals is arguable.
Democrats thought that combining Americans covered under Medicare with those covered by Medicaid and expanding healthcare to cover those not already covered by both government programs, and having the government help them pay for it, would bring the country closer to full coverage.
“If the bill fails this week, the Republican Party faces a backlash from their hardcore supporters and sponsors who are angry that they cannot get anything done despite controlling the U.S. Senate, House and the White House. If it passes, millions of GOP supporters in Red States stand to lose their insurance coverage.”
But the GOP has other ideas, and it does not include expanding coverage. Instead it seeks to remove coverage from those currently covered under ACA while making it potentially harder and more expensive for those without insurance to obtain coverage.
Their idea was to slash healthcare cost by billions of dollars and in the process lower the number of insureds while taking the federal government out of healthcare altogether.
In effect, the plans created by the GOP seek to take the country back to the way things were before ObamaCare when only the wealthy could afford coverage.
As the GOP struggles to pass their latest attempt at repeal, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the idea behind their bill is neither to make it affordable nor to bring healthcare to more Americans.
When you have Texas Republican Ted Cruz, a known opportunist who will jump on any bill if he feels it would benefit his political career, come out in opposition to a GOP-sponsored bill, you know that bill is in trouble.
“Right now, they don’t have my vote,” Cruz said during a panel discussion at the Texas Tribune festival in Austin that also included Sen. John Cornyn. “And I don’t think they have Mike Lee’s vote, either.”
No one knows how Cruz and Sen. Mike Lee of Utah will eventually vote but he told Politico Sunday that he “doesn’t support the latest Obamacare repeal plan.”
Bill sponsor Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is still optimistic that his bill will pass Wednesday but it is becoming increasingly clear that it does not have the vote.
With Arizona Senator John McCain and Rand Paul (R-KY) saying they oppose the bill and intend to vote ‘No” on Wednesday, and Susan Collins of Maine “leaning heavily against” the bill, even if all other GOP senators votes for it, the bill will still fall short.
Every Democrat senator is expected to vote against Graham-Cassidy.
Whether this bill passes on Wednesday or not, the Republican Party has already lost.
Trump’s approval numbers have continued to deteriorate. According to the latest ABC News / Washington Post poll released Sunday morning, 66% of Americans believe that Trump is doing more to divide Americans than unite them.
A new HuffPost/YouGov survey finds that most Americans oppose GOP’s efforts to repeal and replace ObamaCare.
A “52 percent majority want to see the existing law stay on the books, with 47 percent saying Congress should work to improve it, and another 6 percent saying it’s fine as it is.”
By a 10-point margin, Americans say it is time for the GOP to move on from healthcare repeal while the Republican Party faces a trust deficit. Americans say by an 11-point margin, 38 percent to 27 percent, that they trust Democrats more than Republicans to handle health care. Among registered voters, the gap is 13 points.
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