Mind and Destiny

“I make no pretension to patriotism. So long as my voice can be heard ... I will hold up America to the lightning scorn of moral indignation. In doing this, I shall feel myself discharging the duty of a true patriot; for he is a lover of his country who rebukes and does not excuse its sins. It is righteousness that exalteth a nation while sin is a reproach to any people.”- Frederick Douglass

Location: Delhi, N.Y., United States

The author and his webmaster, summer of 1965.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Grave Concerns

Congressional Republicans met behind closed doors to expressed grave concerns about dismantling the Affordable Care Act on the timetable demanded by President Trump.

An audio recording of a session at their annual retreat, obtained by The New York Times, shows Republicans in disarray, far from agreement on health policy, and still searching for something to replace former President Obama’s health care law.  While their leaders called for swift action to rescue consumers from the Affordable Care Act, some Republicans worry about potential pitfalls.

Representative Tom McClintock of California warned: “We had better be sure that we are prepared to live with the market being created, because “that’s going to be called Trumpcare.”  He added: “Republicans will own it lock, stock and barrel, and we’ll be judged on that.”

Congressional Democrats formulated the Affordable Care Act seven years ago.  Their primary goal was to provide health insurance to more people, and the Obama administration went to great lengths to enrolled millions of people in Medicaid or private health plans.

Congressional Republicans promised that none of the 20 million people who gained coverage through “Obamacare” will lose it if the law is repealed, even as they lift its mandates and penalties, pull back the tax increases that pay for it and pledge to enact a new program that will be cheaper for taxpayers and consumers.

In their private session, the recording of which was first reported on by The Washington Post, Republicans revealed that they understood the predicament they had largely created for themselves.

Republicans say they can get the same results for less money and without a statutory mandate that most Americans have insurance.  But without that requirement, budget analysts say, it will be difficult for Republicans to achieve coverage gains as large as those achieved under the Affordable Care Act.


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