Thursday, March 23, 2017

Republicans Caught on the Horns of a Dilemma

What will they do today? More specifically, what will Virginia Foxx do? (We know. We just love to ask.)

Either Republicans will pass the Ryan-Trumpcare bill that will wreak havoc with their own voters and impact their own re-election prospects.

Or they will vote it down, undermining President Steve Bannon's agenda.

If the bill fails, “How do we have any momentum to do anything else?” asked Representative Richard Hudson, Republican of North Carolina. “Without this bill, I don’t know how you do tax reform,” he said. If the bill fails, “it’s going to have negative repercussions for all of us.”

But what if it succeeds? (And of course Foxx will vote for it, because she's a company suck.) For true right-wingers, success for this bill means abject failure for the promise to repeal Obamacare: “The bill maintains Obamacare’s overall structure and approach, an approach that cements the federal government’s role in health insurance” -- Rep. Rick Crawford (R-Ark.).

For more moderate Republicans (you mean, there are still some of those left on this earth?!), success for this bill will mean more hardship for their constituents. Doctors, nurses, and hospitals have come out strongly against the measure, and insurance companies have been largely "skeptical," to put it mildly.

"Much has changed in the years since the Affordable Care Act passed, with millions of Americans, many in red states, now getting health insurance as a result of the law, as well as treatment for the prescription drug addictions that have plagued scores of communities" (Jennifer Steinhauer).

Spending money to help people is exactly what the Republican "Freedom Caucus" intends to stamp out. Ordinarily, Virginia Foxx would be right there with them, but she owes Paul Ryan for her committee chairmanship. So "Obamacare Lite" is fine with her.

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