Today’s GOP: Repealing America

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Just a few short comments on yesterday’s House vote to repeal health care reform

This comment from Alex Pareene suggests a few Blue Dogs may have learned the lesson that siding with the GOP won’t necessarily help you win re-election:

Three Democrats voted to repeal: Dan Boren of Oklahoma, Mike McIntyre of North Carolina, and Mike Ross of Arkansas. Even Heath Shuler voted against repeal. As Suzy Khimm notes, this means “10 House Democrats who voted against the original health reform bill refused to repeal it today.” Now I guess the House will move on to repealing the president, and the Senate.

Nate Silver goes into a deeper analysis of what the 10 House Democrats were thinking. Much condensed version: They think that in 2012, a record of voting against Republicans will help them win re-election.

The following is to be filed under why do Republicans hate America — yesterday afternoon, Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) mocked people who are uninsurable because of pre-existing conditions:

As with other wingnuts, the representative from Georgia (not Texas, as misidentified in the video) doesn’t grasp why this is a problem. And this is all the more disgusting because Rep. Gingrey is a physician. Republicans like to show contempt for government, but this is contempt for the American people, not to mention human intelligence.

Think Progress:

As Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, explained yesterday, while many of the 129 million Americans already have insurance, they would have a hard time finding coverage if the law were repealed and they were to lose their job. “A number of people are in jobs with large employers where people can’t be underwritten because of their health condition, that’s good news. But those folks frankly can’t look at leaving that jobs, can’t start their own business, can’t have the freedom to retiring early before they have qualify for Medicare because they are terrified they will lose that insurance coverage,” Sebelius said, pointing out that insurers deny coverage to 1 out of every 7 who apply for it in the individual market.

And while Gingrey’s “hang nail” comments are certainly ridiculous, insurance companies are not above denying coverage for fairly elementary ailments. Insurers will disqualify you for just taking certain medicines because of the possibility of future costs, including common drugs as Lipitor and Nexium and often deny coverage to individuals in high risk occupations, such as firefighting, lumber work, telecom installation, and anything more dangerous than office work.

Ezra Klein points out that Republicans campaigned last year on the slogan “repeal and replace.” They’ve dropped the “replace” part. But look — Speaker John Boehner says they’re going to introduce a resolution calling for committees to come up with a replacement. So, yes, all those sheafs of paper they were waving around last year and calling “plans” were just props.

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6 Comments

  1. jugheadjack  •  Jan 20, 2011 @11:34 am

    If Boehner wants a replacement, why can’t him and his party craft a good replacement? Answer: Too stupid.

  2. c u n d gulag  •  Jan 20, 2011 @11:43 am

    OK, then Dr. Rep. Gingrey, then I’m sure you’ll be happy TODAY to prove to everyone how easy all of this is, when you quit your great Congressional Health Care policy to go onto the ‘free market.’
    I sure hope you don’t find out that you or some family member now has cancer, and at one time had zit’s, because you see, the free market companies could as easily deny you for acne as for a “hangnail,” as for high blood pressure, or a C-section, etc, – and already have.
    Look, Rep. Gingrey, at what I found after just one Google search:
    http://www.startribune.com/business/37356659.html
    And this is just ONE state.
    Now, Rep. Gingrey, I wouldn’t wish denial of coverage on anyone. But, I’d sure as hell wish it on you before I’d wish it on others. You’re a Congressman and a Doctor, and you should know better than the ignorant lemmings you’re trying to posture in front of.
    Shame.
    But then, you don’t know what that is now, do you? Have you no sense of decency, Sir. Shame…

  3. biggerbox  •  Jan 20, 2011 @11:48 am

    House Republicans have a great gig. Since they aren’t actually interested in governance, and they have no real policy proposals, they can eagerly spend their time on ridiculous bills like this as pure political exercise. It allows them to spend hours spewing nonsense and lies, at least some of which will be robotically repeated by “news” programs (who allow themselves to be used because it’s an easy way to fill air time between commercials), and no matter what crazy stuff the House passes, they know it won’t get through the Senate or signed by Obama. So the House GOP doesn’t have to worry about even writing bills that make sense. Plus, they’ll be able to accuse “partisans” in the Senate and the White House of oppressing them by blocking all their legislation. Win-win for them.

    It’s only a issue for people who are old-fashioned enough to think the House has some responsibility for serious work to govern the country and solve our problems (which leaves most GOP Representatives out.)

    Just wait until even the slow ones figure this out and instead of the “Repeal the Job-Killing yaddeh-yaddeh” bill they’re holding hearings on the cost of dog food for Bo the White House dog, and passing the “Defense of Gun Rights for Unborn Children Act”, full of righteous claims about how armed fetuses would have prevented what happened in Philadelphia.

  4. Felicity  •  Jan 20, 2011 @12:34 pm

    Of course, You can buy health insurance and therefore afford to go to the doctor if your’re NOT sick. If you ARE sick, you can’t buy health insurance and therefore you can’t go to the doctor because you can’t afford it. People don’t usually, unless for a check-up, go to the doctor if they’re not sick, which is exactly the way the health insurance corporations want it.

  5. goatherd  •  Jan 20, 2011 @2:59 pm

    Just among the few neighbors who have shared their stories with me, there is a family who can no longer afford coverage after a sudden rate hike combined with the recession. The parents are fiftyish and about as clean living as you can imagine, no smoking, no drinking, daily exercise, fit as fiddles. They got slapped with a 30%+ rate hike. They never had any sort of medical problem, just approaching the age when they might. I have another neighbor dying of a cancer that would have been very treatable if only she had seen a doctor sooner. Now, most of my neighbors don’t really believe in regular checkups, they like to leave things in “God’s hands” so universal healthcare may not have made a difference in her case. But, she’s a wonderful woman and I just wish her life didn’t have to end this way.

    I have another neighbor who had a stroke at a young age and is on disability. He has been for many years. If there were a plebicite regarding healthcare, they would probably all vote for repeal.– Only in America.

    I think it was a Harvard study that estimated 45,000 Americans die each year for lack of healthcare. There are also a couple of hundred thousand bankruptcies due to medical expenses. 60% of these had medical insurance which turned out to be inadequate or they were the victims of recission. (From “Sicko”) How does it come to be that the Republicans don’t see this as a problem?

    I imagine someone could collect countless stories. I used to work with people with disabilities that resulted from traumatic injuries. Most were young and never gave a thought to having a medical problem. They would have hated to buy healthcare insurance. They thought they were immortal. That was one day. The next day they woke up in a hospital bed and they were contemplating a whole new way of life. The costs to taxpayers over the course of their lives would be in the millions for care and equipment. Letting them go without care is unthinkable because of a thing called civilization. (Even the Gauls/Celts had a means to care for those who couldn’t care for themselves, see: Terry Jones, “Barbarians”– yeah the guy from Monty P)

    Years ago, a Greek friend of mine whose area of expertise was medical ethics put it about as simply as could be, “The problem with your healthcare system is that you have to turn everything into a business.” I think that should be obvious to the third grader now. One problem is that it is not.

  6. Rick Massimo  •  Jan 20, 2011 @5:27 pm

    None of this has anything to do with health care. They just can’t call it the That N!%%@r Is Not the Boss of Us Act because you can’t say that on TV.

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