Skip to comments.A GOP Plan for Health Care? Donít Bet on It: The Republicans won't unify on a plan
Posted on 01/10/2014 5:06:54 AM PST by SeekAndFind
Is it time for the GOP to graduate from bashing Obamacare to embracing a solution of its own?
Republicans on Capitol Hill are increasingly eying the possibility, even as conservative voices push against the idea of a single, comprehensive bill.
When do we add to our arsenal, not just attacking Obamacare, which deserves to be attacked and exposed for its own weaknesses, but when do we add to that discussion a way to resolve the health-care issues that we face in the nation? asks Representative Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina.
In the spring, GOP whip Kevin McCarthy established a working group called the House Obamacare Accountability Project, which sources say has quietly discussed the possibility of adapting health-care principles for the party to embrace.
The groups work complements the efforts of individual members such as Representative Tom Price of Georgia, who has championed his own health-care bill, and Republican Study Committee chairman Steve Scalise, who worked with Representative Phil Roe to craft an RSC bill the group unveiled in September.
On December 3, at the height of the HealthCare.gov failures, President Obama challenged opponents: I will work with anybody to implement this law effectively. Now, you got good ideas? Bring em to me. Lets go.
Days later, the RSC sent its bill to the president. The group now has a clock on its website documenting the time that has elapsed without response from the president.
Mulvaney says the hardest question he gets back home when Obamacare comes up is, well, what do the Republicans want to do about health care? The trouble isnt that the GOP doesnt have ideas, he says. Weve got them! We all know about the bills and so forth. But we havent, sort of rallied behind them yet and driven that message as a party. So when do we start to do that? he asks. But thats easier said than done: Republicans have had difficulty agreeing on health care in the past. In April, majority leader Eric Cantor had to pull a bill to support federally funded high-risk pools, one element of some GOP plans, for lack of GOP support. The resulting headlines were brutal: Ross Douthat took the kerfuffle to lament the Republican health policy trainwreck. Some opponents of Cantors proposal were simply worried that funding the program, established by Obamacare, would muddle GOP attacks on the law, but many others were primarily concerned with funding a federal health program at all.
Health-care-reform legislation at the federal level is something of a minefield for Republican officials, who run into criticisms from the right that the conservative solutions are creating new federal programs, increasing spending, or taking power from state governments.
Grace-Marie Turner, the president of the Galen Institute, a conservative health-care think tank, says she has been pushing GOP officials to present solutions, but not in a single, comprehensive bill that would quickly create political problems of its own.
I actually worry conservatives play into hands of liberals if they try to get behind one bill, she says.
As Turner sees it, a single bill to deal with the many problems of the health-care market would need to be long reminiscent of Obamacares 2,000-plus pages cumbersome, and a good way to open Republicans to new political attacks.
Instead, she wants the GOP to rebuild trust with the public by selling the principles of conservative reform, which she outlines as choice, security, portability, and accessibility.
Any conservative reform bill, she says, has to recognize that the current health-care marketplace, even before Obamacare, doesnt resemble the market for a normal consumer good at all, because of overwhelming government regulations and other factors. Another key issue: How to provide security for individuals with preexisting conditions, whom Obamacare now protects high-risk pools are the traditional GOP solution to the problem.
Legislation to tackle these problems would necessarily force tough choices: One of the biggest distortions conservatives have to remove from the marketplace, experts say, is the tax exemption for employer-provided health insurance, which could make the bill an easy target for the Left.
On its face, the idea that opponents of current law or a proposed bill should have their own solution seems reasonable, but in D.C.s trench warfare, its not unusual for strategic politicians to avoid giving their opponents the avenue for an attack.
At a 2012 event to celebrate her 25th year in Congress, for example, Democratic minority leader Nancy Pelosi explained that the key to defeating conservative proposals to reform Social Security was for Democrats not to embrace their own reform plan (despite the programs disastrous finances).
Republicans are heading to a closed-door retreat at the end of the month, where Mulvaney hopes the issue will be discussed. But no matter how Obamacare goes, the GOP may not unify on an approach to health care anytime before at least 2017 the first time they could have a chance to actually implement their ideas.
Jonathan Strong is a political reporter for National Review Online.
But what's the alternative for replacing it?
If the answer is "Don't replace it"
Well, that's an argument for the status quo -- A SURE LOSER.
Here’s the general Republican idea ( details to be ironed out ):
Republicans are a bunch of individuals with a full spread of opinions and goals. Democrats are stamped from a mold and have carefully crafted, university focus group tested theory’s. It’s truly astonishing that with the likes of Olympia Snow and John McCain that there were zero Republican votes for the ACA.
It is government interference that has caused all the problems to begin with.
The reason the Democrats want the GOP to present a plan of their own is so they can attack it-pure and simple. If the GOP presented a plan tomorrow, does anyone think that the media wouldn’t nick pick it apart? Complaints would be front page news next to Christie’s traffic jam and Obamacare failures would be relegated to page 6.
The GOP option is to keep hammering away at Obamacare until the Democrats toss in the towel-which they will do. They are losing this fight and they know it.
Simple, right? Let the states do their thing. If something is working well, great. If something isn't working well, too bad. At least it is only a fraction of the population, and it will be easier to correct because the failing state system will (hopefully) have several successful state systems to look to as examples. The feds should stay out of it though, we do not need to put all our eggs in one policy basket.
Absolutely. Since Obamacare is much worse than what existed before, repealing it would be an improvement. Or the Democrats can just wait and watch it (and their electoral prospects) burn. (I favor the "Don't shoot, let them burn." approach by the Republicans.) There is no simple solution to a health care fiasco in the US that has taken over 70 years to evolve.
RE: Was there room for improvement? Of course.
There you go, you just argued for a plan.
My point is this -— arguing that we must repeal Obamacare and then simultaneously saying we don’t need to change anything is a LOSER.
This the democrat’s red herring. They must defer blame somewhere over Obamacare. So naturally they castigate republicans for a lack of plan.
There are plenty of plans. In fact there’s a whole industry of makers of plans behind the Beltway.
I think the American people have had enough of federal plans. The states are doing just fine without federal involvement.
You and I must define "plan" differently.I could use a new pair of pants.But I needn't hire 3,000 lawyers to draw up a 2,500 page plan regarding my wardrobe.All I have to do is drive to Macy's,spend ten minutes in their men's department and then pull out my MasterCard.
First. ObamaCare must be repealed.
This is too much a liberal canard to not repeal.
Its like the Amnesty Liberals who whine “you can’t deport all the illegals”. Another Liberal Canard to do nothing
First Repeal ObamaCare. We automatically revert to previous system. Then, conservatives can create a real free market approach to health care
IMO, a general framework is sufficient. Frame the debate...’government has spent 75 years tinkering in healthcare and the result is higher costs and a complicated system for patients and doctors. Obamacare caused more of that on steroids.’
Then, identify a few key objectives...which a pretty consistently included across the spectrum on the right....open up competition across state lines, give consumers more choice, give individuals the same tax benefits as business so families can make their own choices and not be tied to their employer if they choose not to.
The RINOs have already pronounced that they want to *keep* the damned thing, just make it *less* onerous to business.
And screw the public. Speaking on behalf of the public, screw them!
“Chamber of Commerce vows to fight ObamaCare *employer* mandate”
“We’re not going to get rid of [the Affordable Care Act] so we’re going to have to find ways to make it work.” — Chamber Of Commerce President and CEO Thomas Donohue
The health care of the USA will be significantly improved just by getting rid of Obamacare! Billions of dollars will be saved, that is, we will stop the wasteful expenditure of billions if not trillions of dollars!
Millions of citizens will have their health care restored. Our health care system will be restored to what it was before this awful law wrecked the industry, if that is possible.
Fix Obamacare? Easy. I think Shakespeare said it best.
This is why I don’t like to wake up in the morning - let’s gather around the great American bonfire and discuss what solutions Washington has to offer. Middle East need Democracy? Someone is uninsured? Illegals need a path to citizenship? Africa starving and riddled with AIDS? Children being shot? Blacks being incarcerated and failing in school? Banks need free cash? IMF need a hug? Tim Geitner need a job? Ted Kennedy need roses on his grave? Aaaargh!!!!!!
This is a HUGE problem for the GOP.
The only reason we have Obamacare, is the GOP is out to lunch of the subject.
Step up GOP. Now. The GOP needs to present an opposing proposal.
Simply saying we are against something isn’t an option.
PRESENT SOMETHING GOP.
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