Michigan governor tells Sen. Ron Johnson he’s an idiot. With all due respect

You know just how stupid and amoral Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) really is when he’s being taken to task for his positions by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder who is perhaps most well-known for his willingness to poison most of the population of Flint. Johnson has been on an anti-Medicaid tear, trying to prove that it’s a huge waste of tax dollars, has caused the opioid crisis, and should be abolished. He’s been taking on the states that expanded Medicaid under Obamacare, and has been so ridiculous in his attacks that he finally drew out Snyder.

Snyder wrote a letter to U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., telling the chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee that he “respectfully disagrees that the approach used in your letter to calculate the growth in expenditures is an accurate portrayal of this successful program.”
The governor defended the Healthy

Continue reading “Michigan governor tells Sen. Ron Johnson he’s an idiot. With all due respect”

House passes $4.2 trillion budget, sets up tax cuts for the rich and guts Medicare, Medicaid

With a razor-thin 219-206 margin, House Republicans have passed their FY2018 budget, a $4.2 trillion spending and cuts measure that sets up their tax cut bill to progress through the Senate without being subject to a filibuster, provided they come up with a tax cut bill. This is a non-binding resolution that would set spending—and slashing—priorities for the Congress. Those priorities are a big problem, not just for Democrats but for the health of the nation.

The bill not only instructs congress to do massive tax cuts for the rich through the budget reconciliation process, it instructs lawmakers to reduce Medicaid spending by $1 trillion and Medicare by $473 billion. That’s along with the $37 billion in cuts for affordable housing, $100 billion for Pell Grants, cutting Head Start by $3 billion, and essentially gutting the WIC program that provides food assistance to 1.25 million women, infants,

Continue reading “House passes $4.2 trillion budget, sets up tax cuts for the rich and guts Medicare, Medicaid”

Senate Republicans don’t need to repeal Obamacare to destroy Medicaid or Medicare

The Republican Senate budget is a remarkably destructive and radical proposal, one that would destroy the social safety net beyond anything they’ve proposed yet. Case in point, Medicaid, which they proposed be reduced by $800 to $880 billion in their various Trumpcare proposals. They’re going for the full $1 trillion—yes trillion this time around. While they’re at it, they’re proposing cutting billions from Medicare as well. As ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, Sen. Bernie Sanders got his hands on the budget and is raising the alarm.

“The Republican budget is a massive transfer of wealth from working families, the elderly, children, the sick, and the poor to the top 1 percent,” Sanders’ report argues.
Sanders has already argued that the GOP plan breaks Trump’s promise on Medicare. The report emphasizes that it would cut spending for Medicaid, which provides care for low-income and disabled Americans, by more

Continue reading “Senate Republicans don’t need to repeal Obamacare to destroy Medicaid or Medicare”

Puerto Rico’s health crisis demonstrates just how dumb the latest Trumpcare big idea is

The latest Trumpcare salvo, Graham-Cassidy, has failed for now, but it’s not done. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the guy who admits he knows absolutely nothing about healthcare reform, is convinced he and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) have hit on the right formula, and that this will be the framework for replacing the Affordable Care Act.

Graham happened to be getting his haircut at the same time as former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., who had an idea: Why not distribute health care spending through block grants to the states? That’s what a Republican Congress did in the 1990s to overhaul the nation’s welfare system, which ultimately won the signature of Bill Clinton, a Democratic president.

Hurricane Maria just blew that whole idea out of the water. Here’s how. Right now, Congress is figuring out how to get more Medicaid dollars to Puerto Rico because its Medicaid funding already ran out once

Continue reading “Puerto Rico’s health crisis demonstrates just how dumb the latest Trumpcare big idea is”

McConnell fails. Again. Trumpcare dead. Again.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did it again, though this time his embarrassment will be slightly less public and humiliating. This time, Trumpcare won’t go to the floor for a vote that is destined to fail.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), flanked by Senate GOP leaders, promised the measure would pass eventually, but acknowledged it won’t happen by the Sept. 30 deadline.
“We’re on the path to pass Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson. It’s not a question of if, but when,” he insisted. “With a process that gives more intention and time we will repeal Obamacare with a block grant.”

Graham’s co-author, a visibly downcast Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), then confirmed to reporters: “We don’t have the votes.”

Then Cassidy said “Let’s engage together and find a bipartisan path forward.” Which is clearly ridiculous because Democrats will never in a million years agree to replacing our healthcare with block grants. And because

Continue reading “McConnell fails. Again. Trumpcare dead. Again.”

Senate Republicans already considering the next way they’re going to ruin health care in America

With just four days to go in this round of trying to kill Obamacare and every indication that they are going to fail, Republicans are planning the next totally partisan assault. The only way Obamacare is going to be repealed is with Republican votes, so they chose to get the job done through the budget reconciliation process, which can’t be filibustered in the Senate. Since it’s not likely to happen this time, they’re talking about trying it again with the next budget resolution.

There is nothing to suggest Obamacare repeal would get any easier in the coming months and doing so may significantly hobble the Republican majority’s other chief legislative priority: tax reform. But facing a floundering repeal push, wrath from the base and a frustrated President Donald Trump, Republicans may have no other choice but to keep pushing to uproot the law.
“We’ve got to do both,” Senate Finance

Continue reading “Senate Republicans already considering the next way they’re going to ruin health care in America”

Republicans meet today to decide whether to take another Trumpcare vote

Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) finally decided she would be principled on Monday afternoon, ending the will-she-or-won’t-she speculation about the latest really awful Obamacare repeal attempt from her Republican colleagues. That should be the death blow to the bill, with Sens. John McCain (R-AZ), Rand Paul (R-KY), and Ted Cruz (R-TX) also saying they will vote no. But no one trusts Paul to do anything he says he will, and Cruz is just holding out for a bribe or two, so this isn’t over yet. In fact, leadership seems to be thinking, forcing a vote on this terrible bill might make it pass.

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Tex.) did not rule out the possibility of holding a vote on the proposal despite clear signs that it did not have sufficient support to pass. Many Republicans feel pressure from voters to keep pushing to repeal the ACA before moving on

Continue reading “Republicans meet today to decide whether to take another Trumpcare vote”