Just a few quick thoughts since I’m frantically packing for the long trip back to the US.
The Republicans finally came out with their official Obamacare replacement plan. From what I can tell, it is basically Obamacare with more debt. It eliminates the insurance
mandate tax, replacing it with hiked insurance rate for those who go without coverage — under the logic, I guess, that higher initial premiums will encourage the uninsured to buy insurance. It maintains the coverage mandate, which doesn’t work without a purchase mandate. It keeps the elimination of lifetime caps and coverage for those under 26. It also cuts off funding to Planned Parenthood. It’s basically all the popular stuff about Obamacare without all the unpopular stuff that pays for it.
There’s also no chance it will pass. The Senate is highly skeptical. A number of interest groups and conservative groups are already against it. The proposal is basically DOA.
And frankly, so is the Republican Party if they can’t do better than this. I didn’t think they could come up with something worse than Obamacare but they managed it.
(Note: the response from the Democrats is very illuminating. The overwhelming cry is, “THIS IS A TAX CUT FOR THE RICH!!!!” It’s astonishing how every Democratic policy and every political instinct revolves around soaking those evil rich people.)