Barack Obama came into office promising to sign a universal healthcare bill. Despite PolitiFact labeling the Affordable Care Act (aka the ACA, aka Obamacare) bill that was eventually signed by Obama a “compromise,” the fact is he failed in that regard. It’s not a universal healthcare bill, it’s unwieldy, and despite one popular provision resonating with the populace (preexisting conditions no longer being allowed to keep you from getting health insurance), there’s at least six terrible aspects to go along with it. But I’m not really here to talk about Obamacare itself.
Instead, I want to talk about the process.
Obama and the Democrats wasted a solid year on healthcare and ended up with an unpopular bill passed on a party-line vote that cost them the House of Representatives for the rest of Obama’s time in office. Other priorities went by the wayside. Even though there was still time left after passing the ACA, it was an election year. In case you don’t know already, passing big bills in an election year absent a real national crisis is notoriously difficult. Politicians are averse to it, and Washington being what it is, there are numerous ways for enemies to run out the clock.
Unfortunately, the Republicans seem to be headed down the exact same path as early Obama-era Democrats…
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) said House Republicans’ plan to repeal and replace ObamaCare will need a lot of work to be approved in the upper chamber.
“The bill probably can be fixed, but it’s going to take a lot of carpentry on that framework,” Cotton said on ABC’s “This Week.”
Cotton said the bill as it is cannot pass the Senate, adding that it would have “adverse consequences for millions of Americans.”
He then issued a message to members in the House.
“Do not walk the plank and vote for a bill that cannot pass the Senate and then have to face the consequences of that vote,” Cotton said.
He suggested the House take a “pause.”
“I’m afraid that if they vote for this bill, they’re going to put the House majority at risk next year,” he said.
I would be shocked if this bill actually makes it through Congress before January. The whole thing should be scrapped in its entirety while a new plan is worked on for late summer introduction. In the meantime, immigration, infrastructure, and tax reform could all be tackled. Hell, just focusing on immigration would be fine with me, since that’s one of the main reasons Trump got elected president in the first place. Chuck Schumer is already making noise about stopping the wall.
That cannot be allowed to happen.
I’m afraid that if the GOP doesn’t get their act together soon, that’s exactly what’s going to come to pass. I’m not saying drop healthcare reform altogether. That’s not the answer. This current effort needs to be rethought, though. It’s heading for disaster and even if this shitty bill does get passed in the end, most of Trump’s political capital will have been wasted on it.