GOP counts on their base to be stupid enough to still believe they have a plan to replace Obamacare

Eight years later, and Republican candidates are STILL pretending like they’ll repeal Obamacare, if the base just believes hard enough to elect them again. Never mind that they’ve had the White House and the Congress for nearly two years and have only managed to demonstrate they can wreck all the things that made the law popular.

They have updated the idea from “repeal and replace” to “repeal and bring back the stuff that you like so much in the law,” which is as tricky to run on as it sounds. A lawsuit to declare the whole thing unconstitutional? “Sure, anything that’s going to actually get rid of it, yes,” says Mike Braun, the Republican running for Senate in Indiana. “And then be ready to come back and talk about what you’re ready to do about pre-existing conditions and no limits on coverage. That’s where you don’t hear much conservative

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Trump’s Obamacare sabotage backfires, which means free health care for many!

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How rich of this? Donald Trump’s sabotage of the Affordable Care Act, his work to send premium costs so high no one would sign up, has actually resulted in free health insurance for lower-income people in 98 percent of counties. Premiums aren’t skyrocketing for the very big majority of consumers in the Obamacare markets—they’re shrinking.

Trump’s refusal to pay cost-sharing reduction payments to insurance companies meant those companies had to figure out how to recoup their losses. In doing so, they did the exact opposite of what Trump wanted to happen—they made free health insurance available to people who qualify in 98 percent of counties, according to a analysis by Avalere. Astounding, isn’t it? What that means is this:

“This year, more than ever, it is important for consumers to shop around and compare their options across metal levels,” said Chris Sloan, senior manager at Avalere. “The

Continue reading “Trump’s Obamacare sabotage backfires, which means free health care for many!”

Tom Price is coming after Medicare, Obamacare under the guise of helping doctors

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Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, arguably the most corrupt member of the Trump administration outside of the Trump family, is going after Medicare and the Affordable Care Act and government all in one fell swoop. He’s doing it for his fellow physicians, he says, which is probably true. But there’s no doubt that his toxic anti-government, anti-Medicare ideology is at work here.

It was, on its surface, another of the health secretary’s many meetings with “victims” of Obamacare — this time with some of the conservative physicians who felt the law was hurting their patients and their own bottom lines. An official readout from Price’s staff trumpeted the eight participating physicians as “witnesses” to Obamacare’s failings.
But that wasn’t Price’s only message to the doctors, according to two participants in the meeting. The health secretary also signaled he would protect the doctors from a raft of

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Another day, another threat from the White House to insurance companies

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There’s been a rampant rumor that this was going to be the week that the Trump administration pulled the plug on cost-saving reduction (CSR) payments to insurance companies on Obamacare exchanges. The threats have been coming daily since the Senate failed to pass an Affordable Care Act repeal, and Wednesday is a repeat.

“We said from the very beginning that we would look at that on a month by month basis,” said Office of Management and Budget director Mick Mulvaney on CNN Wednesday. “That has not changed.” […]
However, Mulvaney left open the possibility of ending the subsidies as the White House moves soon to decide on what to do about the CSR payments, which he and the president have called insurance company bailouts.

“The way to fix that is not by bailing out the insurance companies. These cost sharing reduction payments are payments to the insurance

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As new Obamacare rates come in, insurers and state officials point finger at Trump and GOP

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Insurers participating in the Affordable Care Act’s markets are having to file their proposed rate increases for next year, and as they file in, states are seeing 30 percent increases as the norm. There’s one reason for the hikes everyone agrees to: Republicans. Between Congress’s Trumpcare fiasco and popular vote loser Donald Trump’s sabotage, there’s just too much uncertainty and insurers have to hedge their bets by increasing rates.

Big insurers in Idaho, West Virginia, South Carolina, Iowa and Wyoming are seeking to raise premiums by averages close to 30% or more, according to preliminary rate requests published Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Major marketplace players in New Mexico, Tennessee, North Dakota and Hawaii indicated they were looking for average increases of 20% or more. […]
Together the filings show the uncertainty in the health-insurance marketplaces as insurers around the U.S.

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Republican Congress finally showing signs of moving on, beginning work on Obamacare fixes

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The White House is apparently not ready to let Trumpcare die, bringing in Republican governors and this week’s most worthless Senate hacks, Republicans Dean Heller (NV), Lindsey Graham (SC), and Bill Cassidy (LA) to try to keep repeal alive. The rest of the Senate? They’re moving on.

In what could be seen as a not so subtle rebuke of both Trump for his sabotage threats and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for his subversion of Senate norms and traditions in trying to ram through repeal, a powerful committee chairman is actually following regular order to do something to fix the Affordable Care Act.

Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, the influential chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, announced that his panel would begin work in early September on legislation to “stabilize and strengthen the individual health insurance market” for 2018. He publicly urged Mr. Trump

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Remember that dumb lawsuit over Obamacare payments? It’s a big problem for Trump

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Popular vote loser Donald Trump received notice Tuesday that his threats to sabotage Obamacare are going to land him in court. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that states can step in to the administration’s appeal of a lawsuit from the House of Representatives challenging the cost-sharing reduction payments to insurance companies Trump has been threatening.

The court agreed with the state officials that there’s reason to believe the Trump administration isn’t adequately acting on behalf of states. The Trump administration and House Republicans opposed the states’ effort. […]
The Trump administration and House Republicans sought and received several delays from the appeals court this year, arguing in part that the repeal and “replace” effort on Capitol Hill―now stalled―could make the case irrelevant.

But at any time, Trump could drop the appeal or simply order the Treasury to end the payments.

That, coupled

Continue reading “Remember that dumb lawsuit over Obamacare payments? It’s a big problem for Trump”

Idaho turns on Trump in wake of big health insurance premium hikes, demands Congress act

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This is something you don’t see … ever. Idaho’s very Republican insurance commissioner is very pissed at popular vote loser Donald Trump and the Republican over big Affordable Care Act premium increases announced by insurers—an average 38 percent hike, with 50 percent hikes for some silver plans.

Idaho said the proposed increase for silver plans was because of “the potential refusal by the federal government to fund the cost share reduction mechanism.”
Insurers are required under law to lower co-pays and deductibles for lower-income Obamacare customers, with the government reimbursing them. But the Trump administration has not decided if it will make the payments in 2018.

President Trump has repeatedly said he wants to let Obamacare implode as a way to get Democrats on board for repealing the law.

Idaho’s insurance director, Dean Cameron, said the uncertainty is leading to price increases.

“I call on Congress to

Continue reading “Idaho turns on Trump in wake of big health insurance premium hikes, demands Congress act”

Idaho turns on Trump in wake of big health insurance premium hikes, demands Congress act

Campaign Action

This is something you don’t see … ever. Idaho’s very Republican insurance commissioner is very pissed at popular vote loser Donald Trump and the Republican over big Affordable Care Act premium increases announced by insurers—an average 38 percent hike, with 50 percent hikes for some silver plans.

Idaho said the proposed increase for silver plans was because of “the potential refusal by the federal government to fund the cost share reduction mechanism.”
Insurers are required under law to lower co-pays and deductibles for lower-income Obamacare customers, with the government reimbursing them. But the Trump administration has not decided if it will make the payments in 2018.

President Trump has repeatedly said he wants to let Obamacare implode as a way to get Democrats on board for repealing the law.

Idaho’s insurance director, Dean Cameron, said the uncertainty is leading to price increases.

“I call on Congress to

Continue reading “Idaho turns on Trump in wake of big health insurance premium hikes, demands Congress act”

Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again

Petulant popular vote loser Donald Trump does not like losing. At all. He’s on day four of a tear against the Senate for not repealing Obamacare. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that there wouldn’t be any more bailouts for insurance companies OR Congress ever again, and he’s back on that theme Monday morning.

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One of those things he can do—he can seriously destabilize the health insurance markets by refusing to pay cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), payments the government makes to insurers that help reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. The other thing he can’t do—he can’t take away Congress’s health insurance. Only they can do that, and it doesn’t seem too likely that they will,

Continue reading “Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again”

Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again

Petulant popular vote loser Donald Trump does not like losing. At all. He’s on day four of a tear against the Senate for not repealing Obamacare. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that there wouldn’t be any more bailouts for insurance companies OR Congress ever again, and he’s back on that theme Monday morning.

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One of those things he can do—he can seriously destabilize the health insurance markets by refusing to pay cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), payments the government makes to insurers that help reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. The other thing he can’t do—he can’t take away Congress’s health insurance. Only they can do that, and it doesn’t seem too likely that they will,

Continue reading “Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again”

Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again

Petulant popular vote loser Donald Trump does not like losing. At all. He’s on day four of a tear against the Senate for not repealing Obamacare. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that there wouldn’t be any more bailouts for insurance companies OR Congress ever again, and he’s back on that theme Monday morning.

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p class=”is-empty-p”>

One of those things he can do—he can seriously destabilize the health insurance markets by refusing to pay cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), payments the government makes to insurers that help reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. The other thing he can’t do—he can’t take away Congress’s health insurance. Only they can do that, and it doesn’t seem too likely that they will,

Continue reading “Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again”

Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again

Petulant popular vote loser Donald Trump does not like losing. At all. He’s on day four of a tear against the Senate for not repealing Obamacare. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that there wouldn’t be any more bailouts for insurance companies OR Congress ever again, and he’s back on that theme Monday morning.

x

<

p class=”is-empty-p”>

One of those things he can do—he can seriously destabilize the health insurance markets by refusing to pay cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), payments the government makes to insurers that help reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. The other thing he can’t do—he can’t take away Congress’s health insurance. Only they can do that, and it doesn’t seem too likely that they will,

Continue reading “Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again”

Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again

Petulant popular vote loser Donald Trump does not like losing. At all. He’s on day four of a tear against the Senate for not repealing Obamacare. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that there wouldn’t be any more bailouts for insurance companies OR Congress ever again, and he’s back on that theme Monday morning.

x

<

p class=”is-empty-p”>

One of those things he can do—he can seriously destabilize the health insurance markets by refusing to pay cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), payments the government makes to insurers that help reduce deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs for low-income people. The other thing he can’t do—he can’t take away Congress’s health insurance. Only they can do that, and it doesn’t seem too likely that they will,

Continue reading “Trump continues tweeting tirade, threatens Congress and insurers on Trumpcare again”

Trump’s sabotage of Obamacare runs very deep

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The taxpayer dollars you are sending to Washington, D.C., to help people get health insurance coverage are actually being used by the Trump administration to destroy the very program that would achieve that goal. Does that sound like something the federal government should be doing, using funding for a program to destroy that program? No? Well, it’s happening.

The Trump administration has spent taxpayer money meant to encourage enrollment in the Affordable Care Act on a public relations campaign aimed at methodically strangling it.

The effort, which involves a multi-pronged social media push as well as video testimonials designed at damaging public opinion of President Obama’s health care law, is far more robust and sustained than has been publicly revealed or realized.

The strategy has caught the eye of legal experts and Democrats in Congress, who have asked government

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Obamacare is in danger of paving the path for Trumpcare

Many people are under the impression that the GOP agenda is paused because of Donald Trump’s Russia Scandal. But where Republicans are concerned, one should never make that assumption. The truth is Republicans know how to win. Remember how dead Trumpcare was? Then suddenly, they revived it. Members of the House were willing to contort themselves like pretzels to find a reason to change their vote to favor Trumpcare, and it was reborn.

Many Republicans and most Democrats seem sure that Trumpcare is dead in the Senate, but that certainty is misplaced. Republicans will lose in 2018 if they appear to have done nothing and pass no legislation. And they may lose if they pass the draconian Trumpcare bill.

But not so fast.

Obamacare is in trouble in many places, especially as Donald Trump and his administration continue to sabotage the law.

Since Jan. 20, the Trump administration has already acted to depress enrollment in Affordable Care Act

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Washington is not broken

Ruins of Washington in 1976 film, Logan's Run

With enough isolation and security, it’s possible to protect most systems from outside attack. Concerted efforts may overwhelm the system temporarily, and every point of ingress adds vulnerability, but in most instances these issues are solvable. They’re the kind of problem that keeps security and protocol experts in business. Every day, companies from Amazon to Zipcar deal with these issues, and live.

However, protecting a system against an internal threat is much more difficult. Not only do those on the inside have much better access, they also know the rules, know the bottlenecks, know how to exploit weak points to cripple functionality much more effectively than any outside entity. It’s this access and understanding that makes the most trivial internal mole much more frightening to intelligence agencies than the greatest super-spy batting for the other team. It’s what makes betting against your own team the greatest sin in sports. It’s the sort of attack that can permanently damage a system to the point where recovery is difficult or impossible.

It’s what is crippling our nation.

As you watch the same handful of politicians trot between the same round of Sunday morning talk shows, you’ll hear the same mythology put forward again and again: our government is sadly hindered—broken—by intractable issues and rising incivility. Left and right, simple intransigence (if not incompetence) is standing in the way of progress. It’s the common refrain, repeated daily, the assumption against which all stories about our current government are framed.

It’s also completely wrong. The United States is not the victim of a left-right tussle over priorities. It’s not being torn by clashing ideologies.

It’s not a problem; it’s a strategy. It’s not an accident; it’s sabotage. 2013 Republicans are the 1919 Black Sox of politics, and the fix is in.

Read the evidence below the fold.

Obamacare is working—believe Republican naysayers at your peril

For states that have decided to be proactive and work for the wellbeing of all their citizens and small businesses, the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, is being implemented successfully. There will be bumps but it will be successful where politicians start supporting it as opposed to putting obstacles in its way to attempt to cause it to fail for ideological reasons.

A few weeks ago it was reported that California premiums under Obamacare would be lower than predicted. In Oregon after rates were posted insurance companies in the exchange requested or said there would be decreases in their own rates.

Today the New York Times is reporting that health plan costs for individuals in New York are decreasing by 50 percent. It is true that those that are getting employer base health insurance likely will see little change. For the entrepreneur, the stylist, the musician, the sandwich shop owner, this is a financial saving and likely lifesaving. Remember with Obamacare, health screenings are a part of every plan.

This is big for several reasons. For decades innovative individuals were chained to their corporate masters because leaving those chains meant that they likely could not get insurance because of pre-existing conditions or because basic individual insurance plans were simply unaffordable. It is clear that putting the individual on a similar playing field with corporations frees those who want to innovate or go into business for themselves. Obamacare has given them that opportunity, that access to seek success. That is the fear of every Corporation against this program. They will no longer have a monopoly on the innovative ideas of its employees and will either have to pay for their real worth or lose them.

Obamacare is not a panacea. Obamacare is a good start. It is true that health insurance companies in the short term will benefit from all the taxpayer provided government subsidies afforded to those who must buy health insurance from these private insurance companies (a wealth transfer from the many to the few). However, in a system where every politician is bought and owned my moneyed interests, Obamacare was a middle class coup.

Americans must still ultimately fight for a single payer system, “Medicare for all.” This ensures that every able-bodied American pay taxes for healthcare and every American is entitled to good healthcare in the country that claims it has the best health care. Only a single payer system can mitigate the fraud that is our health insurance system. It is the only moral and economically smart solution for the country.