After trying varying degrees of cruelty with their replacement for the Affordable Care Act, it looks like Congressional Republicans may be throwing in the towel. Or not. They may try another last ditch effort that will satisfy a cold-hearted Senator Ted Cruz while at the same time appeasing a senator like Susan Collins of Maine. Balancing cruelty and extremism with more traditional conservative values sure is a difficult thing to do.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump continues to exhibit all the legislative finesse of a MOAB. One day he wants to let Obamacare die while unleashing a tweet storm denying any personal responsibility, the next day he orders senators back to the negotiating table. (This, just one year after his “I alone can fix it” speech at the Republican National Convention.)
My guess is that Republicans in Congress won’t get their act together to pass their beloved “repeal
Continue reading “Cartoon: Repeal & Whatever”
While Obamacare repeal—and the destruction of Medicaid—continues to crumble around Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s feet, House Speaker Paul Ryan is going back to his tried-and-true efforts to try to destroy Medicare. And this time around, Social Security is in his sights, too.
The proposal calls for more than $200 billion in cuts to mandatory programs. It also serves “as a vehicle for changing taxes,” CNN reports, which is “the primary legislative focus of the 2018 budget.”
“In past years, our proposals had little chance of becoming a reality because we faced a Democratic White House,” said House Budget Committee Chairman Diane Black in a statement. “But now with a Republican Congress and a Republican administration, now is the time to put forward a governing document with real solutions to address our biggest challenges.”
The spending plan will likely face hurdles within the Republican Party: While
Continue reading “Paul Ryan: Oh, hey, since we can’t destroy Medicaid, let’s go ahead and privatize Medicare”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is pulling out all the stops to get the Republican senators who are not down with killing Medicaid on board his Trumpcare bill. He’s telling them that they can vote safely for it, because the cuts won’t happen because a future Congress will stop them.
Here’s what McConnell has told several hesitant senators (including [Ohio Sen. Rob] Portman and Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.): The bill’s deepest Medicaid cuts are far into the future, and they’ll never go into effect anyway.
“He’s trying to sell the pragmatists like Portman, like Capito on ‘the CPI-U will never happen,'” a GOP lobbyist and former Hill staffer told me.
Under the current version of the Senate health-care bill, federal Medicaid spending would drop by 26 percent starting in 2026, pegged to the Urban Consumer Price Index. That’s still eight-and-a-half years away—long past senators’ next
Continue reading “McConnell to moderates: Go ahead and vote to kill Medicaid, it’ll never really happen”