Unless you’ve been living under a rock these past few weeks, you know that Senate Republicans have resurrected another version of wealth care, better known as Graham-Cassidy that like their previous plans wouldn’t start until the end of 2019.
Because they want to avoid being blamed for massive health insurance rate hikes until after the 2018 midterms were over. And there will be rate hikes next year because of their actions, or more appropriately inaction.
Unlike their past bills, Senate Republicans didn’t include any specific appropriations for Cost Sharing Reduction (CSR) reimbursement payments to insurance carriers on the individual market exchanges in this round of zombie care.
Because there is no specific appropriation of CSR funds for the next two years, some carriers are dropping out, specifically citing uncertainty in being paid. Those who are sticking around are jacking up their rates dramatically to cover themselves with an average increase of fourteen percent to cover potential losses.
And our President has been threatening to pull the plug on CSR’s very month since March. And should this bill pass, unless the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions committee (HELP) can find a way to appropriate them separately, there won’t be any CSR payments in 2018.
So when you hear Republicans talk about how affordable health care needs to be turned over to the states to make it more “cost efficient,” remember which Party has been sabotaging it ever since the ACA’s inception. Like trying to pass it without proper hearings — or a score from the Congressional Budget Office, hoping to pass it via reconciliation with only a simple majority (51) — but reconciliation ends Saturday, the 30th.
Since they can start reconciliation anew in January, with meaner version getting scored by the CBO, with proper hearings and debate, and still pass with a simple majority, why all fuss? Because they just might pass it, even in the face of overwhelming opposition from medical associations and the American people.
Unlike Senator Chuck Grassley, claiming “You know, I could maybe give you 10 reasons why this bill shouldn’t be considered,” along with “But Republicans campaigned on this so often that you have a responsibility to carry out what you said in the campaign. That’s pretty much as much of a reason as the substance of the bill.”
And when that substance is toxic, what does it say about their policy free philosophy? So how should the American people respond to a dysfunctional Party determined to take us back to the days of the Robber Barons, using the “savings” from cutting health care to fulfill their plutocratic master’s desire for more tax breaks?
By Resisting — Persisting — and Insisting in this year’s state and local elections, particularly the 56th District race, where Melissa Dart will represent your interests far better than Peter Farrell — ahem McGuire could.
Editor’s note: This article has been reposted with the author’s permission, and unless you are a paying subscriber to the Central Virginian, it is only available on-line here.