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Can you blame Senate Republicans for keeping their health care bill secret?

Can you blame Senate Republicans for keeping their health care bill secret?

The media only have themselves to blame

Senate Republicans are under constant media bombardment for having the gall to keep mum about the details of the latest version of Obamacare repeal.

Take this article from NBC:

The Senate is closing in on a health care bill that could affect coverage for tens of millions of Americans and overhaul an industry that makes up one-sixth of the economy.

Only one problem: Almost no one knows what’s in it.

In a striking break from how Congress normally crafts legislation, including Obamacare, the Senate is conducting its negotiations behind closed doors. The process began five weeks ago, after the House passed its version of health care reform, with a small working group of 13 senators that included no women.

The opaque process makes it impossible to evaluate whether there are any significant changes coming to health care. There are no hearings with health experts, industry leaders, and patient advocacy groups to weigh in where the public can watch their testimony or where Democrats can offer amendments.

“We’ll let you see the bill when we finally release it,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told reporters on Tuesday. He added that “nobody is hiding the ball here” and that people were “free to ask anybody anything.”

That this is even a point of contention proves one thing — ignorance of the legislative process. Legislation is not passed in secret, away from the public eye, neither are bills signed into law without substantial public oversight.

Everyone will get a chance to gripe, complain, throw tomatoes, and trot out a child who will most certainly die if Republicans don’t act!™ once the bill is finished and finally introduced.

But the media uproar isn’t about everyone, it’s about the media. They’ve been shunned the opportunity to intentionally mischaracterize components of a bill before its introduction. The dynamics are so out of kilter, the political press corps believes itself entitled to not merely observe, but to participate in the legislative process.

And that’s exactly why they haven’t been invited to the party.

Despite what major outlets are reporting, nothing nefarious is happening. No one is being blocked out of any normal process. There is no “stonewalling” (since that’s the latest fashionable Beltway complaint lodged at those not bending to media will). The media only have themselves to blame.

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye

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Comments

NBC can go pound sand until they defecate a glass bottle.

WGAF what they have to say about anything? it’s all #FakeNews, all the time.

All at once we will know what’s in it…No, been there. Pass it to see what’s in it? No, been done. Behold his mighty hand…nope, Charlton Heston said that. If the media is po’d at the moment, I’m happy.

Here is some good news from OMB – https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/omb/memoranda/2017/M-17-26.pdf

The pdf is a 12 page memo starting to eliminate or modify OMB memos about reporting from the various departments to OMB. The oldest memo eliminated was from 1997. There were many related to the Y2K response.

Hope this work reduction keeps moving on…

Blatant hypocrisy strike again. They were all for keeping Obamacare a huge secret, so us deplorables could not put our two cents.

    Granny in reply to Stan25. | June 15, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Obamacare was kept a secret even from Republican members of Congress, who were not allowed to even see the bill – kept under lock and key – never mind have any input.

Well, it does smell a lot like the secretive process the Dems used to pass ObamaCare, and we criticized them for it at the time.

Also, if they were actually planning to repeal, there would be no need for secrecy.

    clintack in reply to Same Same. | June 15, 2017 at 3:56 pm

    If I recall correctly, the criticism then was that the vote was scheduled before any of the Republicans would have a chance to read the bill.

    That hasn’t happened here. There isn’t a final bill yet, and the vote hasn’t been scheduled.

There is nothing wrong with crafting a bill through confidential negotiations while keeping the particulars of a bill confidential until it is finalized. In fact, many legislative actions are not publicized nor the particulars released until the bill is filed or an action is placed on the calender. What the Dems did with the ACA was to keep it hidden until it went to the floor for discussion and a vote. It was so huge and unwieldy, at that point, that there was simply not enough time left to critically analyze it.

We’ll have to see how the Republicans handle the Senate healthcare bill.

A heads-up here. There will be NO repeal of the ACA. It will be essentially modified by the Republicans, but the most popular parts of the ACA will not be repealed.

    There’s also nothing wrong with keeping the good and popular sections of the ACA while totally repealing it. All they need to do there is to start the bill off with a version of “On Date X, the ACA is hereby repealed” and follow it up with “After Date X, the following regulations will hereby be imposed by the ABC bill”

    The ability to keep young adults on parent’s medical insurance until they graduate from college has been a godsend for us, as well as quite a few other Republican voters. Even though the Dems will lie like rugs about it, some sections of the ACA deserve to be kept. Just not buried in the existing corrupt maze of weasel words and lies.

    Full ACA repeal. Put whatever good parts deserve to survive into the replacement bill and burn the rest.

Subotai Bahadur | June 15, 2017 at 4:24 pm

Granting that anything that NBC says can be assumed on its face to be a deliberate lie and deception; there is another problem.

The GOPe has absolutely no credibility about wanting to get rid of Obamacare at all, and there are a lot of indications that they want the increased State control over the individual. And they are willing and eager to lose both Houses to get it.

There are nothing but enemies in charge of Congress.

Narrative, this is all about narrative.

Stan25: They were all for keeping Obamacare a huge secret

Granny: Obamacare was kept a secret even from Republican members of Congress, who were not allowed to even see the bill – kept under lock and key – never mind have any input.

clintack: If I recall correctly, the criticism then was that the vote was scheduled before any of the Republicans would have a chance to read the bill.

Mac45: What the Dems did with the ACA was to keep it hidden until it went to the floor for discussion and a vote.

Romey: Narrative, this is all about narrative.

There were multiple public hearings during the crafting of the Affordable Care Act, including a roundtable hearing with the President. There were protests over single payer. CBO scores were provided several times during the process. The text of the bill was published weeks in advance of the vote.

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