Obamacare

Will the House GOP Obamacare replacement accelerate the death spiral?

Featured image Sen. Tom Cotton says “I think we’re moving a little bit too quickly on health care reform.” He explains: This is a big issue. This is not like the latest spending bill that gets released on a Monday night, [passed] on Wednesday and everybody goes home for Christmas, and we live with it for nine months. We’re going to live with health care reform that we pass forever, or until »

Is GOP Health Care Bill a Disaster? No

Featured image Peter Nelson, my colleague at Center of the American Experiment, is one of the country’s leading experts on health care policy. On the Center’s web site, he urges conservatives to take a deep breath and understand the constraints that Congressional Republicans are working under. In particular, a full repeal of Obamacare must get through the Senate, which means it must get 60 votes. There are only 52 Republican senators. Therefore, »

Who will own the Obamacare “replacement”?

Featured image If you answered “the Republicans,” you are right. If you answered the Senate parliamentarian, you are crazy. It makes no sense, therefore, for the Senate parliamentarian to have a say in the replacement of Obamacare. Yet, congressional Republicans are effectively granting the parliamentarian a veto. In so doing, they are ensuring that the Obamacare replacement will be sub-optimal at best and, more likely, disastrous. Here’s the background. Republicans won’t have »

House “repeal and replace” legislation gets Medicaid right

Featured image I found this analysis of the proposed House Obamacare repeal and replace legislation to be a useful starting point in understanding the proposal. The author is “Asclepius,” a sensible sounding guy. His verdict: The proposal contains sound and much needed Medicaid reforms; sensible but very modest insurance market reforms; and the entirely misguided creation of new subsidies, in the form of tax credits, for participants in the ACA exchanges. In »

Is the GOP Health Care Bill a Disaster?

Featured image That is what a lot of people are saying: Obamacare Lite, or Obamacare 2.0. Paul Ryan, on the other hand, calls it the most significant entitlement reform in 50 years. Maybe it is. But the Republicans hold power in Washington in considerable part because of popular revulsion against Obamacare. Hasn’t just about every Republican in Congress pledged to repeal Obamacare? Haven’t the House and Senate actually voted to repeal Obamacare? »

Repeal and replace, but take the time to get it right

Featured image Two months into 2017, groups backed by the Koch brothers reportedly have run out of patience with congressional Republicans over their failure to repeal Obamacare. According to the New York Times, the “Koch network,” along with conservative groups like the Club for Growth and FreedomWorks, are demanding repeal and are applying pressure on GOP lawmakers to keep their promise and get it done now. But what’s the rush? When Republicans »

A face in the crowd

Featured image The response to presidential addresses such as President Trump’s address to the joint session of Congress last night is inherently difficult, if not impossible. That may explain why the Democrats turned to former Kentucky governor Steve Beshear to deliver the Democratic response in a diner surrounded by ordinary Kentucky citizens. Governor Beshear’s response recalled Andy Griffith doing his cracker barrel/man of the people shtick as “Lonesome” Rhodes in A Face »

The Obamacare Mess: It’s All the GOP’s

Featured image Donald Trump said in a recent press conference that he had inherited a mess when he became president. This prompted the usual howls of outrage from the liberal press, but I think it is fair to say that every president inherits a mess. It goes with the job. In at least one respect, however, Trump inherited not just a mess, but a steaming pile of dung. In other words, Obamacare. »

At GOP retreat, whodunnit?

Featured image Washington Post reporter Mike DeBonis reveals that someone inside the closed-door meeting of Republican congressmen in Philadelphia this week may have committed a serious crime in the course of the retreat. That’s not the way DeBonis puts it in his story on the cold feet and second thoughts among the GOP congressmen about their commitment to repeal and replace Obamacare, but that’s how I read this statement: “Recordings of closed »

Sick Protesters Stage Cough-In at Trump Restaurant

Featured image Scott has commented a couple of times on the Democrats’ lame “Make America Sick Again” theme. But the Toddler Party isn’t giving up. Yesterday (I think) a group of goofballs staged a “cough-in” in the restaurant at the Trump International Hotel in New York. It was a pro-Obamacare demonstration (“Trump care makes us sick.”) It would be interesting to know who paid these people to make fools of themselves. »

Make America grate again [updated]

Featured image Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi seem to me to challenge the idea that successful politicians generally have to have a modicum of likability. Each has gone a long way displaying personal qualities that repel citizens of average American sensibilities. Adapting the modernist concept of expressive form, their motto might be Make America Grate Again! They have another variation of the Trump motto in mind. »

The Boobytrapped Presidency

Featured image The Democrats are doing all they can to spike Donald Trump’s presidency before it gets off the ground. His path is littered with snares and pitfalls. Among other things, the Obama administration is taking a series of executive actions that the Democrats say Trump can’t undo. I am not sure how that works; as a general rule, one would think that anything a president can order, the next president can »

Podcast: Repeal, Replace, Repeat Until Done

Featured image The Power Line Show podcast has been on extended hiatus because the four of us suffer from a massive collective action problem, being scattered in time zones and with crazy conflicting schedules. But I’ve been trying to keep my chops up to speed, yesterday sitting in for Rob Long on the weekly Ricochet podcast along with Peter Robinson and James Lileks. The show featured as its special guest Avik Roy, »

Schumer talks tough on Obamacare; does he have a good hand?

Featured image Yesterday, I observed that Chuck Schumer’s tough talk on the Supreme Court is backed up by a hand consisting of. . .nothing. Schumer is no Paul Newman, so for him nothing isn’t a cool hand. Schumer is also talking tough about Obamacare. He insists that Democrats will not help Republicans replace the Affordable Care Act. He anticipates, therefore, that repeal will produce a disaster. He intends to call that disaster »

Mike Pence: Trump will hit the ground running fast

Featured image Vice president-elect Pence met this morning with House Republicans. According to what I’ve been told by a member who was present, Pence said that Donald Trump will cut short his inauguration parade so he can go to the Oval Office and rescind many of President Obama’s executive orders. In addition, as I understand it, Trump will take immediate action to begin undoing some of the administration’s regulations. There are limits »

Whole lotta lyin’ goin’ on

Featured image By just about everyone’s reckoning, the so-called signature achievements of the Obama years are the enactment of Obamacare and the Iran nuclear deal. They have a lot in common. Both are ruinous and both were founded on an edifice of bald-faced lies. President Obama is the lyin’ king and these are the lyin’ years. We recall the foundational lies of Obamacare: If you like your insurance plan, you can keep »

A framework for replacing Obamacare

Featured image James Capretta and Scott Gottlieb of AEI lay out the four reforms around which they say the effort to replace Obamacare should center. They are: 1. Provide a path to catastrophic health insurance for all Americans. Obamacare provides all sorts of health care coverage, including lots of coverage the purchaser doesn’t need (e.g. child birthing care for people not capable of having children). Making people pay for coverage they don’t »