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Republicans have had a number of responses to the Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act.  One of the responses has been to take advantage of the word “tax” as used to describe the mandate in the affordable care act.  The first reason they are in trouble is that Mitt Romney’s campaign refuses to cooperate with this rhetoric.  Since Romney initiated a plan in Massachusetts that is almost identical to the affordable care act, the “tax” meme would hit him as hard as it does President Obama.  Here is a Romney spokesman delivering the bad news to Republicans:

The second reason Republicans are screwed in the health care debate is that they greatly exaggerated how much of a tax increase the Affordable Care Act would cause.  Even if you call it a tax, instead of being the greatest tax increase ever, it is way smaller even than two of the tax increases during Reagan’s term.  See the chart here.

Republican governors have responded to the Supreme Court ruling by saying they will opt out of Medicaid as a way of killing the effectability of the Affordable Care Act.  This leads to a third reason Republicans are screwed. These Republican governors are finding themselves at odds with the Health Care Community in their various states because of the tremendous burden refusing that money would cause. (link)  Ed Schultz explains why here:

Speaker of the House John Boehner has suggested that a counter-plan by Republicans would not bar insurance companies from denying coverage to those with pre-existing conditions.  (link)

This leads to a fourth reason Republicans are screwed, which is that they are trying to cut things that are popular even with Republicans.  Seventy eight percent of Republicans support “banning insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions; 86 percent of Republicans favor “banning insurance companies from cancelling policies because a person becomes ill.”  (link) Upsetting one’s base is never a good idea in politics.

Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell has suggested that universal coverage should not be one of the goals of health care reform.  (link) Reason number five Republicans are screwed in the health care debate is that even Chris Wallace is obviously dumbfounded by this suggestion.  If even a Fox News icon refuses to put lipstick on your suggested Republican policy pig, you are in deep doo-doo. Video here:

McConnell has also said “I don’t think there is any bigger issue in the fall election except for the general effect of the economy.” (link) This leads to reason number six Republicans are screwed in the health care debate.  New Republic articles convincingly show, based on several detailed investigations, that the net economic effect of the Affordable Care Act will probably be positive. (link, link)

The seventh reason Republicans are screwed in the health care debate is that the best Republican ideas are already taken and included in the Affordable Care Act.  Here is what Mark Pauly, the Republican who is credited with originating the mandate idea, had to say about the inclusion of Republican ideas and the options that are left (link):

I have mixed feelings about the mechanics of the current bill. Our idea was to have tax credits and very little additional government control over insurance markets, and the legislation has an awful lot of that. I believe you could achieve almost the same reduction of the uninsured with the subsidies and without the mandate. But CBO says that you leave about 40 percent of the uninsured population without coverage in that scenario. If we want to close that gap, then either we have to have a mandate or make insurance free for everyone and run by the government.

Originally posted to mikepridmore on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:07 PM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Not to mention the rebates! The 80% rule is (17+ / 0-)

    going to drive them out of business one state at a time, to be replaced by expanded medicaid, I hope my home state of CA votes to lead the way.

    "But Brandine, you're supposed to be in Iraq stopping 911!"

    by leftyguitarist on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:24:23 PM PDT

    •  Assuming nobody would be left high and dry (16+ / 0-)

      by the insurance companies closing their doors, this would be a GOOD thing.

      for FAR too long, this nation has been held hostage by the for-profit health-care industry, which doesn't give a SHIT about positive outcomes, just increasing premiums, reducing coverages, soaring profits and executive bonuses.

      For a better America, vote the GOP out of office whenever and wherever possible and as soon (and as often) as possible!

      by dagnome on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:30:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  talk to the doctors, hospitals (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lakehillsliberal, OhioNatureMom

        and other providers who are laughing all the way to the bank. They love it that most people are ignoring the real problems and blaming the insurers.

        I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

        by samddobermann on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 06:07:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They're not separate issues (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          leftyguitarist

          First of all, I don't think the problem, by and large, is greedy doctors.  Doctors make a good living, but if anybody deserves it, they do based on the importance of what they do and the tremendous sacrifices they make to learn their profession.  The problem is pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, and equipment providers.  And, yes, we could probably do with some (very minor) tort reform because malpractice insurance is ridiculously expensive.

          Hospitals, drug companies, and equipment manufacturers can charge as much as they do because they are asking a multitude of deep-pocketed insurance companies for the money.  The insurance companies have tons of cash and not much buying power -> prices get jacked up.  A lean, mean public system with its eye focused on cost savings in the interest of the public good would rein that in considerably.

          In short, a unified system would have incredible buying power and the ability to negotiate better prices right down the line.

          Even with the 80 percent rule, 20 percent off the top is too damn much.  Medicare provides care with about an 8 percent overhead/administrative cost.  

          I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself. I am large. I contain multitudes. - Walt Whitman

          by CharlieHipHop on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 09:23:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  this is the problem (0+ / 0-)

            with demonizing insurance providers.. Not that they're nice or anything, but that it frames the reduction of health care costs as a battle of good-vs-evil.  Chalk that up to America's ridiculous insistence that any problem worth fixing has to have a villain.

            But once we get rid of the insurance companies, costs will still be too high--- because doctors, hospitals and drugmakers are charging too much.  Is it normal that American providers make twice as much as their colleagues in Canada and Germany?  Three times as much as their colleagues in France and Japan?  And that's take-home salary, after all costs.  

            Whether they 'deserve' their salaries is irrelevant---  Because we're still paying it anyways.  

            Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

            by nominalize on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 01:46:29 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  In Massachusetts... (8+ / 0-)

      the MLR for insurers of small businesses is 88% according to
      the rebate letter I got.

  •  The best way to run against them is to just say (25+ / 0-)

    flat out -

    Democrats passed the Republican health care plan - the one that has been promoted over the years by the Heritage Foundation and Bob Dole among numerous other Republicans.

    The ONLY reason Republicans are against it is that it was passed by Democrats and a signed by a Democratic President. They COULD have joined in its passage, but they chose to sit out for the same reason they now want to Repeal it and ridiculously Replace it with nothing because everything that will help is already in the bill.

    The Republicans care more about scoring  political points than lives and covering Americans, they said so right out - Mitch McConnell said covering 30 million Americans WAS NOT THE POINT. And it isn't - to them. When they tell us the truth, that they simply don' t care about Americans who have lost their insurance in this recession, let's believe them and vote Democratic. For the Lives it will save. For the Dollars it will save.

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 01:28:01 PM PDT

  •  Well, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mikepridmore, Shockwave

    1 - If I were a Republican I would write off Romney after that statement. A choice between Romney and the Insidious Plot For The Fascist Domination Of The World? Sorry, Mitt. This argument helps Obama, but not necessarily the ACA. Besides, a supporter of the ACA does not want to mention MA in any discussion where health insurance costs and inflation are possible topics.
    2 - How many American voters were old enough to think when Reagan was President? And how many of those know or/and care about his tax policies? Sorry, this one doesn't fly. Besides, estimates of the cost of Obamacare assume a percentage of continued employer involvement and voluntary price control by hospitals and doctors that are dangerously optimistic.
    3 - This point is quite good. I would , do, worry about price gouging by hospitals and doctors, but that's not Obamacare's fault, and we can respond to it if it happens.
    4 - Again a good point. The benefits of Obamacare are right there, the dangers are worst case scenarios.
    5 - Again good. Universal coverage is both the fiscal and moral high ground.
    6 - As I've hopefully made clear by now I think the ACA will be a failure (opinion, though there is no doubt that it is inferior to single payer) so I don't like this argument.
    7 - I hate ending what should be a positive comment on this note, but really??? Defending the ACA by admitting that it's a Republican idea??? Really??? I can think of no better argument against the thing! Save this argument for after the ACA fails and we're fighting for single payer again rather than simple repeal and a return to the present unacceptable situation.

    •  after ACA fails? as in during a Romney admin? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mikepridmore, rsmpdx, OhioNatureMom

      no chance of single payer / Medicare for all in that situation... and near term that is the only way ACA "Fails"...  unless somehow we get a strong Repub majority in Both houses AND somehow Obama still gets re-elected...  

      Back to square one after a century of fails on universal healthcare? The number of people who will worry, suffer, go bankrupt and die until someday single payer etc is enacted? Too big a price to pay and purist for me.

      Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

      by IreGyre on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 03:34:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  First, thanks for commenting. (7+ / 0-)

      But I disagree with part of your response.  Romneycare doing well with respect to costs and inflation.  While healthcare insurance premiums have gone up in other states, those participating in the state's Health Connector Commonwealth Care program are enjoying a second year of reduced premium payments. Currently, Massachusetts has the highest level of healthcare coverage in the country with more than 98 percent of its residents having healthcare insurance, but ranking as the 48th lowest state in the nation in healthcare expenditures.  The combined saving of last year and this year will save the state approximately $91 million with no benefit reductions or member co-pay increases. (link) So mentioning MA doesn't seem like such a bad idea.  As for mentioning Reagan specifically, he is the supposed gold standard for Republican leaders.  Even if young people don't remember him, invoking him is among the best smackdowns against Republican leaders.

      The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

      by mikepridmore on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 03:37:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I notice Republicans are starting to focus less on (7+ / 0-)

    this. I felt all along Democrats needed to run towards the bill & tout its benefits. After all, it would provide health insurance to about 30 million people. And many other benefits - there's no downside...

    I'm glad it looks like we are finally doing that...This is the best bill that any President passed during my memorable lifetime..

    As a member of Courtesy Kos, I am dedicated to civility and respect for all kossacks, regardless of their opinions, affiliations, or cliques.

    by joedemocrat on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 06:08:35 PM PDT

  •  I'm one of them that this helps immensely (9+ / 0-)

    I saw another diary where they were saying why we should vote for Romney and not Obama, because he didn't follow your Progressive agenda exactly.  So, let me get this straight, this guy gets the really bad guy, gets us out of some of these wars, and is doing his best to get these guys out of Guantanamo but nobody will take them, and has OK'd gays in the military and gay marriage, is for women, and what will Romney give you?  He promises to fire poor people, send jobs to China, raise taxes for the middle class, while lowering his, even though he only pays 15 percent on the money we KNOW about, the rest is not being taxes because he has hidden it in offshore accounts, and we have HEALTH INSURANCE, my god, what else do you want, him to wash your feet?  Please think.  This is a huge deal.  We got it and it will help so much.  I have rheumatoid arthritis and have not been able to get insurance no matter what I want to pay.  This is such a big deal for people like me.  I know, if you are healthy, it doesn't matter, but wait until something happens to someone you love and they cannot get coverage.  They ALL can now.  Obama is so much of a better choice for so many reasons, maybe the best is that he is just a better human being, and he actually cares.   Do you think Romney gives a HOOT about you?  All he cares about is his rich friends and being able to say that he was President.  He would be as bad of a President as W was.  He would have to bring in a bunch of W's people too, so we would be back to hell. We are in a good place.  Give Obama your vote, if for nothing else, for this and for giving gays an equal right for everything in this country.

    "My Momma always taught me to play by the rules, and if you don't that's called cheatin'." - Donna Brazile

    by jjmn on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 06:52:36 PM PDT

  •  Me likey (3+ / 0-)

    Clear writing, to the point, no wasted space ... and a whole lot of insight and good sense.

    I sure hope you are right and I am confident you are substantially so. The GOP disconnect from reality can last only so long. But today's GOP generation is tied to their losing strategy. They couldn't cast off their albatross even if they realized it was there. And they don't realize it.

    You can fool some of the people all of the time...

    Yep, but the Tea Party is dying out.

    you can fool all of the people some of the time...

    Yeah, and America saw what happened in Iraq.

    but you can't fool all the people all of the time.

    I do believe America is entering that phase. Too bad for Republicans they don't listen to their founder. But good news for us going forward.

    Keep your eyes on the prize. And as always,

  •  got so busy reading almost forgot to rec (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    linkage, OhioNatureMom

    The theory that nature is permanently in balance has been largely discredited

    by ban nock on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 08:33:29 PM PDT

  •  Reason 7.5 (5+ / 0-)

    The Republicans have so completely lost control over the event of last Thursday that they have started to blurt out truths about their intentions, everything from the notion that they thought they bought Roberts and are outraged that he is not doing what they want, advertising the phoniness of their activist judiciary argument and a lot of others,  to the fact that they believe health care is a privilege and not a right at all, certainly not a right for the vast majority of Americans who can't afford the fancy new developments with the tens of thousands of dollars price tags, to the matter that they expect their corporate allies to help them by eliminating the existing employer policies before the next election and show Obama to have been wrong on people being able to keep a policy they have, whether ornot they are happy with it, if the corps don't agree, although that has always been so as everyone who has seen what happened to defined benefits pensions knows only too well, to a notion that if the Constitution does not mean what they want it to, they will change it rather than honor and live under it.  Too much talk there. AND VOTERS REMEMBER THAT KIND OF CARELESS TRUTHINESS.

  •  i wouldn't be at all surprised, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, tobendaro, OleHippieChick

    if the republican party did a complete 180, and started claiming, all evidence to the contrary be damned, that the ACA was their baby all along. sure, i know it would be a complete and utter lie, and your point would be?

    trust me, there are enough FOX republicans who would actually suspend rational disbelief to buy into this. at some point, while attempting to explain the polar opposites of their position, republican heads would start exploding. now that's what i'd call good, wholesome, family style entertainment!

  •  uninsured will still show up at ER's and if they (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OhioNatureMom, OleHippieChick

    can't pay, insured and taxpayers will still pay those bills instead of more efficiently through Medicaid. So they're screwing a lot of people to make a point.

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:13:02 AM PDT

  •  It's still not good healthcare reform (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    splashoil

    Regardless of whether conservatives like the ACA or not, the ACA is not a goo dhealthcare reform measure.

    To be sure, the ACA does enact some needed health insurance reform.  But it does not solve the problem of granting access to necessary care for all Americans, while keeping healthcare costs from rising beyond our abilities to pay for it.

    Consider: my healthcare insurance announced a 46% increase in subscriber fees this year, after a 34% increase last year.  My brother, an out of work teacher,  gets healthcare insurance through our state's low income assistance plan.  He needed minor surgery and paid more than $7000 to cover the deductible fees for that one procedure.

    We are both insured, but for how much longer can we afford it?  

    Political partisans love or hate the ACA with equal fervor.  Political realists recognize that the goal of sustainable affordable care for all Americans has not yet been acccomplished.

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 06:14:16 AM PDT

    •  Canada Single Payer (0+ / 0-)

      You pay $60/month for single person health care.  Couple pay $109/month.  Family of three or more pay max. $121/month.  Universal coverage with no one left behind, same standards of care for all regardless of income or class.  Costs are roughly half what is paid here for junk insurance even less when you consider no co-pay, deductibles, etc.
      Drugs cost 1/4 to 1/3 of prices here.  We can't bring them back ("safety"-thanks Barack).
      Obama has set us back so far from what we need it is a shame and a pity.

  •  If the law had been thrown out (3+ / 0-)

    and if Romney won the election, the Republicans probably would have passed something they would call maybe the Health Freedom Act, which would have been 95% of the same policies as the ACA but with a few sweetener kickbacks for corporations and the rich thrown in there. They would have said "Oh, thank god we repealed that terrible Obamacare bill, which would have destroyed the country." They would have cashed in on the ignorance, confusion, and hysteria they created around the Act and banked on media ignorance.

    It was never about policy and it was always about credit. Their biggest fear was that the Act would succeed, people would love the changes in the insurance market, and it would be as popular a Democratic achievement as anything. A successful ACA would undermine their entire anti-government, anti-regulatory platform, which depends on tarnishing the people's confidence in government. A successful ACA would mean a positive legacy for Obama and for the Democratic brand. The one thing they could not stand was to see Obama succeed in implementing the Republican health bill.

  •  Voices of Sanity question smug wonks (0+ / 0-)

    First Look at the Map

    "Two Years of Ugly Race Baiting"

    Over 9 Million at Risk...

    No Funds for Federal Exchanges!

    Clap louder.  But if we had gone with Single Payer this mess would not be on the agenda....

    Even if the law goes into effect as scheduled in 2014, red state governors can vow not to implement its component parts. This covers not only the Medicaid expansion, but the insurance exchanges, the marketplaces where customers can shop on the individual market and compare policies, and reap subsidies for the purchase of coverage at the low end. There was supposed to be a fail-safe in the law; if governors rejected setting up the exchanges, they revert to the federal government, which would set them up for the states. However, there’s one key detail that was left out of that equation. There’s no money to pay for that.

        So why isn’t Jindal reluctantly complying rather than hand a small measure of sovereignty over to the federal government? Because as the result of a drafting oversight, Congress neglected to include automatic appropriations for federally facilitated exchanges (FFEs). That means there’s money on hand to help states that want to set up the exchanges themselves, but the government’s options vis-a-vis states that can’t or won’t act on their own are more limited [...]

        The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) can reallocate money appropriated to HHS’ generic operations account internally, to put more toward establishing FFEs. But in anticipation of the need for greater funding, HHS included a request for $1 billion for program operations in its fiscal year 2013 budget, according to administration and Senate officials. The Senate Appropriations Committee, controlled by Democrats, has recommended just over half a billion for this account. But House Republicans could use their leverage to block providing HHS with any funds they think the administration might need to implement the ACA.

    What could possibly go wrong you ask?

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