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Old 07-18-2017, 05:30 AM
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Default Old Truth Trips Up G.O.P. on Health Law: A Benefit Is Hard to Retract

How's that "repeal and replace" act going for you, cons?

Not so good, I hear. I wonder why?

You've had nearly eight years to come up with something better.

There's only one word for your agenda:

FAIL

Old Truth Trips Up G.O.P. on Health Law: A Benefit Is Hard to Retract

Quote:
WASHINGTON — In the end, Republicans relearned a lesson that has bedeviled them since the New Deal: An American entitlement, once established, can almost never be retracted.

Since the day the Affordable Care Act passed Congress, Republicans have vowed to overturn it. In the beginning, many voters were with them, handing the Republican Party some of the tools: a sweeping rejection of House Democrats in 2010 — a rejection of government reach — followed by the Senate in 2014.

But in the intervening years, as millions of Americans have become insured under the law that was derisively tagged with President Barack Obama’s name, the health care program has become more and more popular, even with Republican governors.

In red states where Mr. Obama and Democrats remain highly unpopular, the law’s reach into American lives could not be denied. This was true for communities ravaged by the opioid crisis, which health care money helped treat; for rural states where hospitals had become all but dependent on increased Medicaid payments that covered the bulk of their patients; and for poor constituents with chronic medical conditions who had come to take it as an article of faith that their insurance companies could not deny them coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Senator Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, said she was besieged by constituents who urged her to oppose the Republican plan: a conservative Republican who was worried about the impact on her grandson, who has cystic fibrosis; a small-business owner in a town where the hospital depends on Medicaid for more than 60 percent of its revenues and is the second-largest employer; a working single mother and her 9-year-old daughter who, for the first time in the girl’s life, were both able to get affordable insurance.
Continue reading the main story

Congressional Republicans, emboldened by their narrow majority, pushed their luck from Day 1. Not content simply to pull apart the health care law, they took the repeal efforts as a license to make broad-based changes to Medicaid, with provisions that would have capped spending annually and ended the open-ended entitlement for the poor after 50 years, without so much as a public hearing. This was a bridge too far for moderate Republicans and those from states where the party commands fierce loyalty but where poor residents benefit in some form from the law.
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