Tag: Obamacare

Don’t Blame Trump for Obamacare’s Collapse

 

Sarah Kliff loves Obamacare. Despite being a journalist for the Washington Post and now Vox, Kliff boosted the program harder than anyone not on the DNC payroll. For years she pushed headlines assuring voters that the ACA was on the brink of success:

Alas, the longer we live with the Byzantine legislation, the harder it is to cheerlead for it. Since November, Kliff has abandoned her PR duties, unable to spin the increasingly dire news:

In the past week, the number of counties with zero health plans signed up to sell Obamacare has doubled. There are now 38,000 Obamacare enrollees scattered across 47 counties where no insurers want to participate in the marketplaces.

Recorded on May 25, 2017
As far as the fate of Obamacare goes, the ball’s in the Senate’s court: to alter the House’s plan or develop a prescription of its own. Dr. Scott Atlas, the Hoover Institution’s David and Joan Traitel Senior Fellow and a frequent author on Obamacare, discusses the most commonsense path for Congress to take, the chances of a repeal/replacement law emerging in the near future, and California’s ill-advised flirtation with adopting a single-payer universal health care system.

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An original article to be featured on The Millennial Review.  Opinion-The House of Representatives recently passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the first phase in the GOP replacement for Obamacare, with only 217 votes. That means 20 Republicans voted against repealing President Obama’s signature legislation. Preview Open

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No Exit on Health Care

 

As the proposed American Health Care Act (AHCA) moves to the Senate, the Republican agenda to “repeal and replace” Obamacare faces major obstacles. Two of the knottiest provisions in the GOP’s complex legislative package deal with how insurance carriers may set premiums for their customers. As a general matter, the cost of health care rises with age: older people cost more to insure than younger people, often a lot more. Are insurance carriers entitled to take those differences into account in setting rates? The second question involves the supply of insurance for persons who have preexisting conditions—a trait that makes them more expensive to insure.

Everyone agrees that the Affordable Care Act is under stress as major insurers continue to exit the individual market because of an inability to cover their costs. But there is widespread disagreement about what, if anything, to do next. As is so often the case, it is easy for legislation to impose new regulations on the insurance markets. It is a lot harder to figure out how, if at all, to undo the mess.

The House bill faces rough sledding in the Senate, and the prognosis for sensible reform is bleak. To see why, it is necessary to go back to first principles. Under a competitive market system for individual insurance, all individuals have to pay the full freight to get coverage for their potential risks, because cross-subsidies between different classes of customers can never survive. In order to give some individuals lower rates, other individuals have to be charged amounts that exceed the accurate estimated costs of their conditions. Since other alternative insurers are by definition available, these overcharged individuals will migrate to another insurer that does not impose the subsidy surcharge. Any insurer that persists in undercharging their high-risk patients will therefore be on the rapid road to bankruptcy.

Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for May 9, 2017, it’s the Profiles in Leftism edition of the show brought to you by ZipRecruiter and SimpliSafe. This week the GOP is celebrating the passage, through one house of Congress, a repeal, only not really a repeal of the People’s Healthcare bill, AKA: ACA, AKA Obamacare. (Just an aside, but why is the conservative press trying to run away from the rumor that our Representatives drank beer after the victory? Isn’t that a good thing? Beer?).

Anyway, every liberal in America with a megaphone is screaming bloody murder. And even some conservatives are screaming that socialized medicine is now cast in concrete. I mean, lighten up folks. We take issue, however, with one Poli. Sci. Professor from Duke who somehow got the august editors of The Hill to publish one of the most shallow (and at the same time pompous) diatribes on any subject I have ever read in my life. I really do recommend you read it and comment on it on Ricochet (if you *are* haha, a *member*).

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud President Trump for what appears to be a very solid slate of nominees to fill federal appeals and district court judicial vacancies.  Their jaws hit the floor as Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber blames Trump for skyrocketing health care premiums and for insurers getting out of the individual marketplace.  And they scratch their heads as gun control advocates claim a fatal stabbing at the University of Texas is a strong argument against allowing students to carry guns on campus.

Obamacare expert Phil Klein–who literally wrote the book on Obamacare repeal–says there’s plenty in the House-passed replacement bill for conservatives to love…and hate.

Economics Reporter Joe Lawyer on a key financial reform victory by Republicans that you may have missed.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America devote their martinis to House passage of the updated American Health Care Act.  They explain how the bill is not as good as it could be but is far better than the original version for conservatives.  They also explain the uncertain future the legislation faces in the U.S. Senate and the GOP’s narrow margin for error.  And they scratch their heads as Republicans hold a victory rally for a bill that is not yet law.

The Washington Examiner’s Senior Health Reporter Kimberly Leonard on big story of the day—the GOP House passes an Obamacare repeal and replace bill. So now what?

White House Correspondent Sarah Westwood has President Trump’s reaction to the win, and she also reports on the details of a new executive order protecting religious liberty.

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America groan as Aetna announces it will pull out of Virginia and Iowa’s last insurer is leaving most of the state for the individual marketplace.  They’re stunned as more Republicans tell pollsters they trust the government to do the right thing more than Democrats do.  And they react as an MSNBC contributor declares that anyone who doesn’t rely on government is elitist.

On the last of this week’s podcasts, Noah Rothman and John Podhoretz (Abe Greenwald is out) try to explain what on earth happened to make it possible for the House to pass a health-care bill and whether this is good news for Republicans or terrible news. (Answer: Both! Neither! Who knows!) Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton reemerges to take full responsibility for losing the election and then turns around and blames James Comey, misogyny, the media Russia, and blue cheese (John made up that last one). Give a listen.

Good and Evil

 

Is there something in the human condition that makes us yearn for epic battles between good and evil? Are we as a species driven to ignore obvious facts if they contradict the narrative that our political choices are between heaven and hell rather than about picking the least bad option from a lot of less than stellar choices?

I ask this because a dear friend who is otherwise thoughtful and rational became extremely upset over Congressman Mo Brooks’ statement regarding pre-existing conditions during an interview with Jake Tapper. He said, “…we need to take into consideration all those people who have lived good lives, they’re healthy and they’ve done the things to keep their bodies healthy. Those are the people who have done the things the right way and they’re having their costs skyrocket and it’s not fair…”

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to Elizabeth Warren criticizing former Pres. Obama for leaving millions of Americans feeling like they’ve been “kicked in the teeth” in the current economy.  They also groan at reports that up to 50 House Republicans really don’t want to repeal Obamacare and many of those are even wobbly on giving states more flexibility.  And they discuss the ouster of Jim DeMint at the Heritage Foundation and address speculation that Steve Bannon might replace him.

Ian Tuttle of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are cautiously optimistic as an amendment to the GOP health care bill gives more power to the states and brings more conservatives on board.  They also discuss President Trump’s willingness to renegotiate NAFTA, and Ian explains why he’s concerned about Trump’s approach.  And they dive into the effort by Democrats in California to bar businesses from future state contracts if they help to build a border wall.

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Titled Repeal and Piecemeal: A Better Obamacare Strategy, Dan MacLaughlin’s guide at National Review for addressing the problems of Obamacare takes the basic strategy many of us have demanded for years and lays out it out in better detail.  I’m particularly fond of MacLaughlin’s call to legislative humility.  Preview Open

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Seriously. The American public hates uncertainty, and they hate trying to figure out what to do in a new system of insurance, providers, regulation, etc. And who can blame them? Health insurance is a headache at its very best. So any reforms should keep Obamacare. But just as the government distinguishes between firms with more […]

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Why is it taking so long for the Republicans to repeal and replace Obamacare?  It turns out that many Republicans like key Obamacare provisions, such as the Medicaid expansion and the restrictions on how insurance companies can factor in the health of their clients. Obamacare Republicans Preview Open

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In a post about Justice Gorsuch, @ JcTPatriot noted in passing that many conservatives not only disagree with the main Obamacare decision, but consider it a betrayal by a justice who was “supposed” to be conservative, but went rogue and turned traitor. What nonsense (from those who take that view, not @jctpatriot, who rejects it). The […]

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