Paul Ryan Straight Up Lies To People In Shameless Attempt To Sell Trumpcare as a Win After So Much Losing
Donald Trump and his Republican allies don’t care about health care — or anything else. Trump has no policy goals and doesn’t understand health care — he just wants to put his name on something and the GOP is working hard to make it happen, even if they have to lie their butt off to the American people. They just want a “win” after so much losing.
Republicans in Congress are ideologically committed to repealing Obamacare, either out of a genuine antipathy to government-supported health care or simply because they want to shed the law’s tax increases on the wealthy. Trump is too lazy to have an ideology, so he pays others to have one for him.
House Republicans hoped to vote on this bill last March, but they hit a serious roadblock after the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office determined that their health care proposal would strip 24 million people of health coverage by 2026. A few days later, a Trump White House analysis of the bill leaked which showed that it may cause as many as 26 million people to become uninsured over the course of a decade.
The bill faced universal opposition from Democrats, scattered opposition from moderate Republicans who viewed the bill as too harsh, and similar opposition from Republicans who viewed it as not harsh enough, and it failed.
In their desperation, House Republican leadership will tray again to vote on the measure later this week. This time, however, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) has two new weapons in his arsenal: an amendment, favored by the most conservative members of his caucus, that will make the bill even harsher for people with preexisting health conditions; and a completely shameless willingness to mislead people about what this amendment actually does:
Under Obamacare, insurers cannot discriminate against people with preexisting conditions, and they must cover certain “essential health benefits” — such as prescription drugs, pregnancy care, and hospitalization.
The MacArthur Amendment, as Think Progress states, will allow states to “specify their own set of essential health benefits” at a lower level than the requirements set by existing law. And it would also permit states to obtain waivers that would allow insurers to charge more to many people with preexisting conditions.
In other words, the amendment Ryan refers to in his tweet does not “protect” people with preexisting conditions. It raises costs for many people with preexisting conditions, and it permits many insurance plans to exclude benefits that people with preexisting conditions may need. And that’s on top of the harsh cuts to federal health care spending that were already contained in the bill.
If the Democrats had congressional majorities, they might be able to head off Trump simply by passing a bill renaming the ACA as “Trumpcare.” Unfortunately for Republicans — and fortunately for the rest of us, perhaps — their ideology will always lose out to Trump’s ego if he thinks that a new health care bill might result in people saying that the last guy to hold his job did it better.