McConnell: Doing legislation the way the Senate is supposed to is a ‘waste of time’

Sen. Mitch McConnell has a not-very professional approach to doing his job of leading the whole Senate—not just the Republican one.

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Can we just revisit for a moment the months and months during which former Democratic Sen. Max Baucus, then-chairman of the Finance Committee, chased after Republican Sens. Chuck Grassley and Mike Enzi and Olympia Snowe and any other Republican who might allow him to call the bill “bipartisan?” Because that’s how the Senate was supposed to work. 

Meanwhile, Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut has a good answer to McConnell.

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Senate Republicans catching a clue that saving themselves politically could mean saving Obamacare

The healthcare industry is in full-on panic mode over the Trump regime’s continuing sabotage of Obamacare, which means they’re in full-on pressure mode with Congress—specifically with the Senate, where they apparently believe their only hope for sanity lies.

Senate Republicans face increasing pressure to rescue health insurance markets and protect coverage for millions of Americans amid growing fears the Trump administration is going to let the markets collapse.
In recent days, leading hospitals, physician groups, health insurers and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have pleaded with the Senate to step in, effectively going around the White House.

“Congress must take action now,” the groups warned in a letter to Republican and Democratic Senate leaders. “At this point, only congressional action can help consumers.” […]

In addition to the healthcare groups and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, state insurance regulators — Republicans and Democrats — also are pleading

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Trump sabotage blamed as ‘single most destabilizing factor in the individual market’ by insurers

The Trump regime’s decision to punt on payments to health insurers in the Obamacare markets is continuing to mess up the individual insurance market, and the next rate hikes and instability in that market—on and off of the Obamacare exchanges—are squarely the fault of Trump and the Republicans says the whole healthcare industry, but especially health insurers.

An alliance of health insurers, doctors and employers are urging the Trump administration and Congress to fund cost-sharing subsidies for millions of Americans under the Affordable Care Act. Politico reported Friday that Trump is telling “advisers he wants to end key Obamacare subsidies.” […]

“There now is clear evidence that this uncertainty is undermining the individual insurance market for 2018 and stands to negatively impact millions of people,” several powerful groups representing hospitals, doctors, patients, insurance companies and U.S. employers wrote in a letter to Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

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Trump extends Obamacare reimbursements, states join the court fight

The Trump regime will apparently tell the federal appeals court overseeing the challenge to the legality of cost-sharing subsidies to insurance companies in Obamacare to hold the case over for another 90 days, during which time the payments will still be made. These cost-sharing-reduction payments are critical to insurance companies and to low-income people who receive the subsidized care. On its face that’s good news, but another delay in a final decision on the payments plays into Trump’s long game of sabotaging the law as former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Andy Slavitt explains in a series of tweets. 

That’s because insurers are deciding in the next few weeks if they’ll remain in the exchanges for 2018, as well as the premiums they will charge. Slavitt says that insurance company actuaries “with no exceptions I’m aware of will price 2018 assuming no payment,” and will hike premium

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We must not allow snake-oil marketing of Trumpcare to gain traction

The one thing the plutocracy and their cohort in the political establishment are good at is fooling people into voting against their interests. The bad news is they could very well manage to do that with Trumpcare, as well. Our ineffective health care system owes a debt to corrupt politicians from both parties, just with different gradations evil.

It’s been said before and it bears repeating: it wasn’t Republicans who created the current dysfunctions in Obamacare. The blame lies with certain corporatist Democrats who used Republicans and their failed ideological tenets in the Affordable Care Act. “Bipartisanship” was an excuse for a flawed bill dependent on private insurance. It was a major piece of legislation that allowed pharmaceutical companies to continue the pilfer of drugs that taxpayer funds were instrumental in developing. Democrats held a filibuster-proof Senate long enough to defeat Republican intransigence. But insurance companies and other factions in the medical industry owned enough Democrats to stymie what would have been

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In praise of Donald Trump

From the moment Donald Trump won his surprising victory on Election Day, a new cottage industry sprung up to offer sympathetic profiles of the supposedly long-overlooked and long-suffering voters who rallied to him. The New York Times has been at the forefront, delivering on-the-ground stories from Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Michigan within days of the balloting. But as President Trump’s ever-growing cascade of calamities drove down his approval rating to just above Ebola and just below chlamydia, the Times responded with tales of his undeterred supporters for whom no sin could shake their faith in his ability to Make America Great Again. He is the enemy of their enemies; if liberals are angry, then Trump must be doing something right.

The nation’s paper of record wasn’t content to rest there. As if to codify the right-wing stereotype of effete coastal elites out of touch with salt-of-the-earth “heartland” Americans,

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Obamacare rate hikes are coming, and insurers point finger squarely at Trump

Obamacare, still not failed but definitely under siege, will be facing another obstacle should Republicans not manage to repeal and “replace” it. Insurers are projecting steep premium hikes for 2018 and are laying the blame squarely on the Trump regime’s mismanagement and sabotage.

Health insurers across the country are making plans to dramatically raise Obamacare premiums or exit marketplaces amid growing exasperation with the Trump administration’s erratic management, inconsistent guidance and seeming lack of understanding of basic healthcare issues.
At the same time, state insurance regulators—both Democrat and Republican—have increasingly concluded they cannot count on the Trump administration to help them ensure that consumers will have access to a health plan next year.

The growing frustration with the Trump administration’s management—reflected in letters to state regulators and in interviews with more than two dozen senior industry and government officials nationwide—undercuts a key White House claim that Obamacare insurance marketplaces are collapsing on

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