In ramming a dangerous healthcare bill through the House without anyone having seen it – including their own congress members – and without the Congressional Budget Office having any time to score it – giving Americans no warning of what’s about to happen to them (…so long insurance…) – Paul Ryan and the Republicans have hit Peak Scum.
Congratulations jerks. I thought maybe Dennis Hastert, the former Republican Speaker of the House who turned out to be a serial child molester, had set the unattainable bar. But boy was I wrong.
House Republicans have scheduled a vote today on a mystery bill that will repeal Obamacare and replace it with…nobody knows. Which, I suggest, is not how anyone interested in public service should behave. Any time millions of people’s lives are at stake (and there’s no doubt about that) you would expect such people to understand their responsibilities and act accordingly.
But that’s not what we’ve got. Instead we’ve got a bunch of grown men and women knowing nothing about healthcare, caring nothing about the consequences of denying it to millions of people, and skulking around like a gang of thugs – a church-going horde of Reagan-n-Randites jacked up on adrenaline and operating by way of late night calls and back room huddles, in between the usual slapping of backs and praying for FREEDOM. And almost every one of them is ‘unable to comment on the bill’ (which would give Americans some warning) because ‘Well, I haven’t seen it’. Which of course is entirely by design.
With only hours to go, a few internet folks have gleaned a few details of what could soon become law. And it’s WORSE than what you’d ever guess. There’s little doubt why AHCA II (The Immiserating) is a more precious secret than our current nuclear missile deployments.
— What’s the Rush? Sarah Kliff tells us that’s it’s all part of a Republican long game where tax cuts are king. They don’t care how much screeching and wailing the American public does after realizing their insurance has been reduced to a smoking crater. Why is that? Because the rich get massive tax cuts! AMERICA WINS.
— You’ve got insurance through your employer? You’re getting screwed, too. You’re white, work hard, and you voted Republican. You think you’re safe? HAH. The Republicans threw in a provision to exempt your boss from having to pay for certain expensive illnesses. If you fall into that category, expect to pay thousands to hundreds of thousands more out of pocket.
— Special Ed kids, too? The developmentally disabled? In order to tally up bigger government savings – meaning bigger tax cuts for the wealthy – Republicans have drastically cut Medicaid expenditures. This means that schools who provide education and therapy to our most vulnerable children will be hard-hit, and will likely abandon services unless the states pick up the rest of the costs. Given that most state legislatures are right-wing batcaves, good luck with that.
Finally, Jonathan Chait:
They are rushing through a chamber of Congress a bill reorganizing one-fifth of the economy, without even cursory attempts to gauge its impact. Its budgetary impact is as yet unknown. The same is true of its social impact, though the broad strokes are clear enough: Millions of Americans will lose access to medical care, and tens of thousands of them will die, and Congress is understandably eager to hasten these results without knowing them more precisely. Their haste and secrecy are a way of distancing the House Republicans from the immorality of their actions.
I will only add that if you ever happen to come across Rep. Paul Ryan, you should free to haul off and punch his face. (Oh I would like to say that but, because I am a decent guy, unlike him, I won’t…)