Tuesday, July 23, 2013

No Sense, No ($) Cents

Last week, we examined the growing success of Obamacare (aka the ACA, or Affordable Care Act) in lowering health care costs and covering more Americans. Yet despite this news, Congressional Republicans are still hell-bent on denying Americans the health care they need. And now, they're (yet again) threatening government shutdown if they don't get their way.

Now, other than simply sabotaging the federal health care system, it's not entirely clear what's driving the GOP's obsession with "stopping the individual mandate from going into effect." The individual mandate is, after all, a Republican idea. For that matter, if it doesn't go into effect, the result would be 13.7 million Americans without any health care coverage at all, and by Republicans' own admission, higher premiums and gaps for Americans with pre-existing conditions.

But even if we put the substance aside, note the nature of the political threat: if Democrats refuse to take health care benefits away from 13.7 million Americans, Republicans say they'll shut down the government. Indeed, according to Lee, this idea has the backing of "13 or 14" Senate Republicans and dozens of House Republicans. [...]

To reiterate what we talked about on Friday, there's simply no realistic way Democrats are going to say, "To prevent a government shutdown, we give up -- it took us 100 years of work to get heath care reform done, and it's making a huge difference in the lives of countless American families, but we've decided to trash the whole thing to make the GOP happy." This just isn't going to happen. Even the most unhinged congressional loon must realize, at some level, this is too nutty to take seriously.

Yet they continue manufacturing more crises. Deja vu? Yes, indeed.

Clearly, they still refuse to recognize reality. Most Americans want Congress to give Obamacare a chance to work. And recent federal & state reports detail how Obamacare is succeeding in lowering health insurance rates. Once again, the G-O-TEA is in full denial mode.

And because of this, the usual G-O-TEA suspects in Congress are now demanding more manufactured crises. And ultimately, they're demanding even more austerity. Oh, yes. That's right. They're going there once again.

For all Republicans' trash-talking of Europe, they always demand that we repeat the Eurozone's horrific economic failure. Because of the Eurozone's strong embrace of austerity, those nations have endured extended recession and incredibly high unemployment. And on top of all that, they still have high debt loads! This is why the Eurozone is finally beginning to quit its failed austerity regime.

So if even Europe is beginning to sour on austerity, why do Congressional Republicans keep insisting on bringing even more of it to America? And why are G-O-TEA Congresscritters like Mark Amodei and Joe Heck constantly voting for more of this unnecessary drama?

Obamacare so far has been improving health care across the country. Why would we want to trade it in for less effective health care, more expensive health insurance, and more fiscal austerity? It makes no sense, and it makes no (dollars and) cents.

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