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The Blame Games Begin After the GOP’s First Attempt to Roll Back Obamacare Fails

The Blame Games Begin After the GOP’s First Attempt to Roll Back Obamacare Fails

Maybe next time they’ll get it right

https://petapixel.com/2017/01/21/president-trumps-official-portrait/

Republicans failed to garner enough votes to pass the American Health Care Act (AHCA) Friday. Pulling the bill, the House went into recess.

The Republican’s first attempt to roll back Obamacare failed.

Who’s to blame?

Truthfully, everyone involved.

Paul Ryan

It was a milquetoast bill greeted with a resounding “meh” by everyone excited about the prospect of finally repealing Obamacare.

The AHCA dealt strictly with tenets of Obamacare which could be addressed via budget reconciliation, but public distrust of Congress no longer allows for a three-part promise.

There was no reason for Speaker Ryan not to pass a clean repeal bill, except of course if Senate leadership told him they didn’t have the votes on the other side of the chamber to pass one.

Ryan likely underestimated how difficult it would be to create a plan agreeable to 216 members, especially when the GOP’s election-winning mantra these last seven years has been the repeal of Obamacare.

Republican holdouts had legitimate concerns over the scope of the legislation. The House Freedom Caucus is certainly not to blame. Not this time. By all accounts, they were earnestly negotiating in the hopes of reaching a consensus.

The argument that Republicans had seven years to prepare a cohesive solution is there, and while true, it’s a bit oversimplified. What it doesn’t consider is the administrative changes and priorities of the Trump administration, with Dr. Price at the HHS helm and Trump in the White House.

Is Ryan damaged after losing his first battle? Doubtful. He remains a solid unifier and communicator of Republican policy. He’s also well-liked by his colleagues. In his post-bill fail press conference, he was clearly disappointed, but accepted responsibility and said it was all learning. Unlike Democrats, Republicans don’t vote or think in lock-step with party demands.

The transition from oppositional party to governing party is not an easy one, it would seem.

President Trump

Sources say Trump wasn’t angry about the bill’s failure.

The White House may have trashed Ryan via backchannels, but in a press conference Friday afternoon, Trump was complimentary of Ryan saying “he worked very hard.”

Like Ryan, he chocks the experience up to learning for the next go round.

Both Trump and Ryan reiterated the Obamacare world in which we live is the product of the Democrats. They’re right about that, but blaming the Democrats for Obamacare loses its punch when you’re the governing party poised to rid the regulations of the scourge of the ACA.

What’s next?

It’s back to the drawing board for Obamacare repeal and replace. For now, Congress and the White House will move on to tax reform, circling back to health insurance reform eventually.

President Obama spent a year laying the groundwork for Obamacare, which ultimately passed cleanly along party lines. Democrats paid dealy in the midterm elections as a result.

Trump’s first Executive Order was to chip away at Obamacare, and he likely made its repeal the first item on his policy list because that’s what he promised voters. Shortly after he was elected, he said in an interview it would take up to a year to repeal Obamacare, and he’s right.

Republicans have the time. As long as they’re able to pass something before midterms, it shouldn’t be an electoral blow either.

The health insurance fiasco is too consequential for false choices and rushed shoddy legislation.

Political ramifications aside, we’ll all be better off if Republicans take the time to repeal Obamacare right. The last thing we need is a Frankenstein health insurance bill with nasty policy cocktails, the product of last minute wheeling and dealing. We’ve been down that road before and it’s destroyed our health insurance market.

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye

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Comments

A most excellent analysis, Kemberlee. Thank you!

I think… if I squint a little, I can see a strategy here on the Republican’s side.

IF the Republican first phase outright canceled the ACA, the conservatives would vote for it, but that’s *ALL* they would do. There would be no second phase, no health care plan to cover the preexisting condition people who would lose their coverage, because the conservatives would not vote to allow it and the Dems would withhold their votes out of pure spite.

This would put the moderates in a pickle, because there is *zero* trust on the conservatives side (for good reason) that if they put together a two-part bill, the first to set up the fallback insurance for the vulnerable poor, and the second to unwind and cancel the ACA, that the second bill would ever happen. (because it wouldn’t)

So from here, it would seem the logical and rational choice (ha!) would be to build on this bill so that it contains *both* the full repeal and the guarantees for the poor and sick that would be needed in order to defang the Dem attacks next election and still fulfil the promises the Republicans made.

About right? Or do I need new glasses?

    mrtomsr in reply to georgfelis. | March 25, 2017 at 9:51 am

    I agree that phase one should be outright repeal, period. Phase two would then be bridge coverage for the people who would directly suffer from phase one. Phase two would also include a thorough analysis of what other regulations and the laws those regulations are based on that deter access to, or prevents the giving of care, to all seeking care and remove them. This portion of phase two includes any regulation that tweaks payments to preferred groups or sub industries involved in people’s health. This would include allowing doctors to once again be able to survive as a single practice.

    The replace part of the failed bill was its reason for failure. Prior to ACA, the insurance industry was drowning in regulations that required draconian measures to remain viable. Limit these political regulations on the industry to measures that prevent discrimination and that allow people to financially survive a catastrophic health issue. Then get out of it.

“As long as they’re able to pass something before midterms”

Don’t count on it. I wish I were more optimistic.

why not just pass the bill they passed a couple years ago that got vetoed by Obama?

Oh, well they don’t really want to pass a bill, there’s that.

According to Mssr. Arte d’Deal, now he can’t do anything he was planning. No tax reform. No regulatory reform.

Without T-rumpCare, it’s alllllllllllllllllllll broken.

Purrrrr, purrrrr Mr. Establishment….

    You are the Maxine Waters of this blog.

      Ragspierre in reply to TheFineReport.com. | March 25, 2017 at 3:11 am

      Did he say it or not, you lying sack of excrement?

        sdharms in reply to Ragspierre. | March 25, 2017 at 6:04 am

        I used to read LI just to look for your witty spot on comments. Now you are just ad hominem and cynical. a very unpleasant commenter.

        VaGentleman in reply to Ragspierre. | March 25, 2017 at 12:04 pm

        Funny, I thought the sack of excrement was the coward who voted ‘PRESENT’ on Nov 8. Of course, not having the guts to make a choice does leave you free to ‘save America’ one ‘I told you so’ at a time. But that only works until someone asks: How would Hillary have been better? At that point, all your posturing becomes irrelevant. History clearly shows that Trump WAS and IS the better choice, and all your cute names and foul language can’t change that fact.

        FWIW – tourettes would have been a far more appropriate nom de forum than rags.

Actually, Trump promised much more than simply repeal and replace. He also promised that everyone would have healthcare coverage and that it would be better than what they have now as well as being more affordable. This is simply insane. There is NO WAY that this can be achieved over the long haul. In the short term, it is possible to do all of this IF the government takes over health insurance and healthcare and becomes the dominant payer for healthcare. But, in order for the program to remain viable, price controls would have to be established.

As only 17% of the polled population was in favor of this bill, with 55% being opposed to it, the failure of this bill hardly causes Trump a significant problem. He might have lost a small amount of support from his base, but it is doubtful. Most of those in his base, who are upset about the failure to pass this bill, will most likely blame people other than Trump.

Paul Ryan also did not suffer greatly. He is supported by the politicians, and their backers, who would have benefited from this bill. These same people also benefit if the ACA remains intact. So, he doesn’t really suffer any great loss of power or prestige.

It is also very likely that the passage of this bill would have been the total changes which occurred to tha ACA. If the President really wants to gut Obamacare, his HHS Secretary has the authority to do just that, under the existing law. It is also possible for stand alone bills to defund Planned Parenthood and address specific portions of the ACA. But, everyone involved KNOWS that whether changes are made to the ACA, including repeal, or not, some people are going to lose their insurance coverage, at least in the short run. There is simply no way for everyone to be assured affordable health insurance coverage, unless the federal government becomes, in essence, the single payer. And, then we will see government price controls imposed upon the healthcare industry.

    Ryan is as hated by the base as Boehner.
    He’ll pay.

    snopercod in reply to Mac45. | March 25, 2017 at 7:44 am

    There is NO WAY that this can be achieved over the long haul.

    Isn’t it curious how the free market over the decades has made cynics look like fools?

    …no possible combination of known substances, known forms of machinery, and known forms of force, can be united in a practical machine by which man shall fly long distances through the air…
    – Simon Newcomb (1835-1909), astronomer, head of the U. S. Naval Observatory.

    While theoretically and technically television may be feasible, commercially and financially I consider it an impossibility, a development of which we need waste little time dreaming.
    – Lee DeForest, 1926 (American radio pioneer and inventor of the vacuum tube.)

    There is a young madman proposing to light the streets of London—with what do you suppose—with smoke!
    – Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) [On a proposal to light cities with gaslight.]

    To the extent that we can get the government out of the health care business, it will become widely available and affordable just like TV sets, street lighting and air travel.

    inspectorudy in reply to Mac45. | March 25, 2017 at 10:00 am

    “It is also possible for stand alone bills to defund Planned Parenthood and address specific portions of the ACA.”

    I don’t believe this is true. Any “Stand alone” bill would require 60 votes in the Senate and that would never happen.That is why they can’t simply pass a Repeal obamacare stand alone bill and must be done through reconcilliation.

There is a huge segment of the “base” that sees Ryan as a GOPe stooge who really doesn’t want to repeal Obamacare which is in part a clone of Romneycare. He had strong opposition when ran ala Julius Ceaser. He had a challenge in the fall and still has the animosity of lot of Trump supporters. To me he has the same kind of smell that Democrats have of “I know what’s best of you and I will lie to you to get it done”. If he is lucky this is a wakeup call and he will get a chance to clean up his act.

At the moment, I see the Dems strutting around. The question is whether they are just taking a brief respite to enjoy a needed victory, or they are like a football team losing 50-0 in the final minutes of a game doing their touchdown celebration cause they just scored. To me it seems the later.

I think this may give them the courage to filibuster Gorsuch. Yes, I know Schumer said he would, but until now I thought it would be a “say I’ll filibuster thing then let him quietly get
seated” thing. Now I think they may be more serious about it.

To filibuster, I think would be a mistake, but only if Trump and the Senate make them pay.

At the moment, I see the Dems strutting around. The question is whether they are just taking a brief respite to enjoy a needed victory, or they are like a football team losing 50-0 in the final minutes of a game doing their touchdown celebration cause they just scored. To me it seems the later.

I think this may give them the courage to filibuster Gorsuch. Yes, I know Schumer said he would, but until now I thought it would be a “say I’ll filibuster thing then let him quietly get
seated” thing. Now I think they may be more serious about it.

To filibuster, I think would be a mistake, but only if Trump and the Senate make them pay.

At the moment, I see the Dems strutting around. The question is whether they are just taking a brief respite to enjoy a needed victory, or they are like a football team losing 50-0 in the final minutes of a game doing their touchdown celebration cause they just scored. To me it seems the later.

I think this may give them the courage to filibuster Gorsuch. Yes, I know Schumer said he would, but until now I thought it would be a “say I’ll filibuster thing then let him quietly get
seated” thing. Now I think they may be more serious about it.

To filibuster, I think would be a mistake, but only if Trump and the Senate make them pay.

It wasn’t really THAT good that it needed to be posted thrice. 😉

Rs and Ds in DC uniparty = all want Obamacare. Their donors want it. Trump has to fight the Uniparty. Best of luck …

    We are Trump. And we are the base of the GOP.
    We own this country and the party.

    No luck is needed. Only our relentless efforts and support.
    The other option is failure. That may be an option to the Crying Boehners, but not us.

    Full steam ahead.

I think Trump made a small mistake today. He should have come out and said something like “I said it would take a year. Some people thought we could get it done faster and I gave it a shot. Now we go back and take the long road.”

To me Trump has two more important goals to achieve. The primary campaign platform, ie the four letter word and immigration reform. The other is Gorsuch. I think the Dems will filibuster. If the Senate fails to invoke the nuclear option they will lose. If Trump does not make him a recess appointment he will lose.

    inspectorudy in reply to RodFC. | March 25, 2017 at 10:04 am

    Unfortunately for you and Trump there is this thing called video. There are ample videos of Trump saying that he would repeal and replace in the first days of his term. Some even go so far as to claim in the first few days! Trump meet Congress! Congress is like the “Tar baby” in “Tales of the South” where the more you punch it the harder it is to step away from it.

Full Repeal.

That was the promise.

It appears that it’s too difficult to repeal the ACA, simply not going to happen. The subject is too toxic. So, seems like there are two choices: death by a thousand cuts by having the HHS Sec dismantle it with the powers he is afforded within the law or be bold and lead by proposing a Republican prototype of single payer.

No bigger group of losers than the GOPe.
Hope Trump learned his lesson.

Dump Ryan and move on.

The Donald is a winner. Obama care will be repealed.

http://www.redstate.com/sweetie15/2017/03/24/fact-check-trump-promise-repeal-replace-obamacare-day-one-video/

“We are T-rump”.

LOL.

“We” are lying to ourselves, in that case.

Some of “we” are slavish idiots.

This is 110% on the freedom caucus and their slash and burn accept nothing but 100% of what we want always, ever, if I can’t have her no one will shoot myself in the foot to keep my ideological purity attitude.

    buckeyeminuteman in reply to rdm. | March 25, 2017 at 7:56 am

    What you are describing sounds like a Democrat. Everything we want or nothing at all. Tea Party Conservatives only did what they promised to for 7 years, a total repeal of Obamacare and gov’t run health insurance which is exactly what the RINOcare bill was.

I would like to point out another obvious omission for the dreaded blame game and that omission would be the MSM. The MSM holds extraordinary powers because they determine what is published which means they determine what the public sees. This also means that they determine the context and prejudices for or against whatever they are writing about. No amount of advertising, speech making, or anything else, can begin to compare with this power.
>
The influence wielded by the MSM is so great that there could be only one Democrat in Congress and yet should that one Democrat hold up and stop important legislation from a unified Republican party (I know this cannot happen, this is a straw man so work with me here.), the MSM will ensure that it are Republicans who receive the blame.
>
What this loss in repealing Obamacare does is to reinforce the position of the Democrats because they had the MSM backing. What this means in the future is that tax reform is dead. Tax reform, no matter how well it is done will never receive Democrat support. Instead of accurately portraying the Democrats as the party of “NO!!!!”, the MSM will portray the tax reform proposal as evil and completely bad. The public, in their infinite ignorance, will be easily manipulated by the MSM to believe this message and the Republicans will lose.
>
Worse still, faced with a government shutdown and a completely out of control budget, Trump is going to see Yellen raise interest rates again and again. Each 25 basis point rise will result in another $50 billion increase to service the debt, but the MSM will get the public to believe that raising interest rates is wonderful for the debt and economy. Additionally, the Democrats will refuse to support raising the debt ceiling unless they get everything they want. Fund Planned Parenthood, increase welfare, increase Obamacare support, etc., is all you will hear from the Democrats and, when the Republicans refuse to give the Democrats everything they want, no matter how absurd it might be, the MSM will ensure it is the Republicans who get the blame. Schumer knows this and is wielding this cudgel to ensure the tail is now wagging the dog in our government.
>
Can you now see where this is all going?

    Rick the Curmudgeon in reply to Cleetus. | March 25, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    … the MSM will portray the tax reform proposal as evil and completely bad.

    I fully expect cries of “Tax cuts for the RICH! Tax cuts for the RICH!” from the Usual Suspects in their best Gomer Pyle “Citizen’s ah-RAY-est! Citizen’s ah-RAY-est!” voices.

I believe it took democrats almost TWO years to take over health care and they had a super majority in the senate! Republicans rushed this in some 60 days! Everyone is upset about this?

There is no doubt that with this last minute pulling of the bill by Ryan it shows pathetic leadership on his part! Now, that this is gone, the Republicans know they HAVE to pass a detailed and workable “Repeal and Replace” set of bills! This time, the House, the Senate and the WH better choose to work together no matter their differences! I could never understand why Ryan took the lead with Trump pushing it and the senate be damned?

I believe that though this was a disaster in how this happened, it would have been far worse if it passed.

Now, they take a breather, focus on what can be done in a meaningful way! They must or we may say in 2018 Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Schumer!

buckeyeminuteman | March 25, 2017 at 7:49 am

I blame Squeaker Ryan. He got a total repeal bill on Obama’s desk last January. He can do it again but his testicular fortitude is waning. Don’t worry about the mext election or your big money donors in the pharmaceutical industry. Do the right thing that people voted you to be in Congress for and the next election will take care of itself.

Ryan wanted a repeal and replace bill to satisfy (insert insurance co name here). This is because insurance companies will take a bath without a mandate for their full spectrum product.

they need to take that bath as part of the creative destruction aspect of capitalism.

“It’s no surprise that someone named Obama vetoed a bill repealing Obamacare,” Ryan said in a statement.

“But here’s the thing. The idea that Obamacare is the law of the land for good is a myth. This law will collapse under its own weight, or it will be repealed. Because all those rules and procedures Senate Democrats have used to block us from doing this? That’s all history,” he added. “We have now shown that there is a clear path to repealing Obamacare without 60 votes in the Senate. So, next year, if we’re sending this bill to a Republican president, it will get signed into law.”
–Paul Ryan, 2016

Odd…

https://youtu.be/R-VTbt-i_b4

“My first day in office I’m going to ask Congress to put a bill on my desk getting rid of this disastrous law, and replacing it with reforms that expand choice, freedom, affordability. You’re going to have such great health care at a tiny fraction of the cost, and it’s gonna be so easy.”

Snake oil.

You made the claim, you lying sack of excrement. So you provide the proof.

A YouTube link should suffice.

And the broken comment system fails to put my post in the right place or allow me to edit it. Woohoo!

Is there any reason why Secretary Price cannot begin what was billed as “Phase Two” now?

The bottom line of this mess is that the public NEVER wants to give up a freebie and the MedicAide expansion is a freebie and the “Moderate” Republicans will not vote to change it in any way except to increase it. Never mind that the coverage for these poor people on it is terrible. I personally do not see a way out for the R’s in this mess. Anything they agree on will be obamacare lite because of the blue state Republicans. Red state Dems seem to work lockstep with their liberal leaders but our side has no power over these quizlings.

I completely disagree with the conclusion of this piece. Trump just gave Ryan all the rope he needed to hang himself on his own version of RomBamaCare. Ryan has so little influence over his own conference that Trump had to step in to do the job of Majority Whip and Speaker. It is Trump who allowed the Freedom Caucus into the negotiations in the end. It is Ryan who failed to keep the cats herded across the spectrum as Trump negotiated.

And the WH is already leaking out about how Ryan is no longer trusted to be reliable in furthering Trump’s agenda. Meanwhile, Ryan is talking it up about how this cripples Trump’s chances of passing anything on tax cuts, border control, trade deals and the rest. It’s like my Little League coach used to tell us, “If you expect to lose before the game even starts, the job is already half done.”

This is NOT the guy Trump needs as Speaker. We need a fighter who is on our side, not the guy determined to frustrate the 2018 mandate which he has declared he would do enough already. Paul Ryan MUST resign. Nothing will get done until he does.

Both conservatives and moderates were opposed to the bill. There is not going to be an easy solution. Letting O-care die a natural death and waiting for the dems to propose something is risky, but sometimes that’s how legislation works: You have to wait until there is a crisis before there is a consensus. Especially when the sides are far apart.

http://freebeacon.com/columns/washington-handed-trump-first-defeat/

“The legislation was unpopular with the House Freedom Caucus and outside conservative groups when another D.C. institution, the Congressional Budget Office, began to scare moderates. The coverage losses predicted by CBO forced Republican congressmen to face up to the fact that universal coverage has never been a goal of the conservative movement or the GOP. The potential blowback from reductions in Medicaid rolls worried Republican legislators from Medicaid-heavy districts while the conservatives from safe seats argued that the bill did not go far enough. The parliamentarian and CBO were a left-right combination that knocked the American Health Care Act to the ground. It never recovered.”

Donald J. Trump‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump

Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!

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Yeeeeeeup. He’s just a Progressive demagogue.

Toldja.

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