By all accounts the Graham-Cassidy+Heller version of health care destruction would yield a net coverage reduction for 243,000 Nevadans. Overall it would mean a 31% cut in Medicaid for children — that’s right — children. There’s another 15% cut for services for people with disabilities. And what’s the rationale for this atrocity?
(1) Because we promised! This is probably the silliest reason to do anything ever. I may have promised to offer someone a ride to go shopping, but if there’s a blizzard on the way then it’s downright stupid to “keep the promise.”
(2) Because Obamacare is failing! And why would that be? Because Republicans refused to make some simple fixes (risk corridors, risk sharing, and reinsurance) and the individual health insurance is unstable. It’s a classic case of tossing the baby out with the bathwater. Or, of finding some perfectly “fixable” problems with a law and using those to rationalize pitching the entire thing. Head UP: They’ll try this same approach with the financial sector reforms in the Dodd Frank Act.
And then there’s the part the Republicans aren’t talking about.
(3) Because they’ve wanted to get rid of Medicaid, Medicare, and to privatize Social Security from time out of mind.
This comment sums up the situation:
“The two keys to the Republican attitude are money and ideology. If you view the modern G.O.P. as basically a mechanism to protect the wealthy, Medicaid is an obvious target for the Party. The program caters to low- and middle-income people, and its recent expansion was financed partly by an increase in taxes on the richest households in the country.”
The concept can’t be articulated more simply or directly.
Then there are the sputtered talking points, common among Republican politicians and supporters to hike around the obvious but unspoken issues they have with the Affordable Care Act.
If we don’t pass this we’ll have socialized medicine. Please. Even Single Payer (or Medicare for all) isn’t socialized medicine. Medicare insurance is used to pay PRIVATE providers for medical treatment. This obviously isn’t a nationalized medical service plan. Only by artificially conflating medical insurance with medical services can anyone assert that this is “socialism.”
There are no guarantees in life. So if a family in Minnesota who has a child with muscular dystrophy may be required to pay higher premiums that’s the way the markets work. It doesn’t get more morally bankrupt than this — especially since the current system does guarantee coverage for families with chronically ill children.
This issue is long past being a public policy issue, it has devolved into pure politics in which ‘points’ are scored by a party desperately hoping to cut taxes for its most generous donors at the cost of Americans’ health care.
So, every few weeks we’ll have to call our Senators to beg them not to destroy the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid for ourselves, our families, our friends, our neighbors, and our fellow citizens.
Call Senator Heller at his Las Vegas Office 702-388-6605; his Reno Office 775-686-5770; or his DC Office 202-224-6244.
You may also want to call Senator Cortez-Masto to thank her for her support of health care access for Nevadans. 202-224-3542; 702-388-5020; 775-686-5750.