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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Republicans are sick of people saying they don’t have an alternative to Obamacare.

They have plenty!

And not just, “Don’t get sick! And if you do get sick, die quickly,” as Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) said in 2009.

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives just hasn’t voted on even one Obamacare alternative because it’s hard to fit stuff in when you only work 28 hours a week and have to squeeze in all those Obamacare repeals.

But they’re going to fix that problem in 2014, says Rep. Tom Price (R-GA).

The congressman has introduced his Obamacare alternative — the Empowering Patients First Act — three times since 2009. Price’s bill has never been given a vote, even though it has 50 co-sponsors, including the eminent Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN).

Price told Fox News that after the first of the year, Republican leaders are going to bring forth a bill that will “unite Republicans around health care issues” because “you can’t beat something with nothing.”

This logic runs contrary to Town Hall‘s Conn Carroll, who believes the House GOP won’t coalesce around one plan or, as he calls it, “a villain to run against.”

This has been the GOP strategy since 2010, and don’t expect it to change, despite the assurances the leadership has given to Rep. Price.

Price’s bill has never been scored by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). But a former Republican head of the CBO scored it independently and found that it saves trillions of dollars over 10 years and will reduce the uninsured population by 29 percent by 2016.

If this is true, why haven’t Republicans even put it up for a vote?

A quick look at H.R. 2300, the current version of Price’s bill, shows you why the GOP likely won’t propose an alternative to Obamacare — ever.

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Copyright 2013 The National Memo

    Republican opposition to health care reform was never based on anything but preserving the prerogatives of the health insurance industry, and the multi million dollar salaries of the people who run it. Actual health care, for ordinary Americans, is the last thing in the world they care about.

    • idamag

      You got that right.

  • idamag

    Now, when they are trying to defeat ACA, they claim to have an alternative. I remember the President appointed a bi-partisan committee to come up with healthcare reform. They had several months to do so. They don’t plan on an alternative. They have been against healthcare reform from day one and will stay against it.

  • Patiod

    The ACA *IS* their alternative. It’s the Heritage Foundation-created and Romney-approved creation that they’re fighting because it’s Obama’s.

    • drzaius

      Sorry, I hit enter and then read your post.

    • John Kruger

      Exactly. The liberal alternative is called “single payer”, which was what the Heritage Foundation was trying to avoid when it dreamed up the ACA. They have little choice when they think they have to “out-conservative” a center right president, and the anarchist libertarian stripe known as the tea party is born.

  • drzaius

    The real problem with the GOP coming up with an alternative to the ACA is the fact that the ACA WAS their alternative.

  • Bryan Blake

    The real reason that there will not be a Republican Alternative to the ACA is that they believe that “health care” is a privilege. If you do not have an employer that pays for your health insurance or are fortunate enough to be able to buy it for yourself then you are Shit Out Of Luck! If you are poor it is your fault and you are SOL! If you are unemployed it is your fault and you are SOL! If you are are minority it is your fault and you are SOL! Hungry? SOL! Attended failing public schools? SOL!

    In other words, not a fortunate Republican, one of the chosen few? SOL!

    But take note you cruel bastards. Being SOL is economical. It saves on toilet paper because the sinking Republican economy will continue to shed jobs and leave more and more of us without jobs, food and hope for the future of our children.

    • disqus_ivSI3ByGmh

      The operative term an old co-worker used to use every day at lunch was “Greedy Republican Bastards”.

      • Bryan Blake

        That was the favorite and most polite term my late uncle used to describe them. He was a child of The Great Depression. He grew up in the great aftermath of the very same Republican policies and ideas that not control our politics and economy today. He died a couple of years ago but he was also quoting Yogi the ball player: “De ja vu all over again.”

  • latebloomingrandma

    I could never understand the selling insurance across state lines and how this would decrease cost and improve efficiency. What about all the health systems forming that have their own insurance product? They do this to keep patients in their system. Hospitals often have contracts with insurance carriers. It takes a plethora of business office people to deal with so many insurers when people enter the hospital out of their “area.” Many insurers don’t pay well when out of the area. In big metropolitan areas where many people are going in and out of the city, medical office people have to be so savvy about various insurers and how they pay. It’s a nightmare being on hold all day, just to get a treatment or admission authorized. This issue in itself is a strong reason for single payer—Medicare for all. If big businesses are paying millions of dollars in health care premiums, just make it a tax. Insurance companies will still be in business, as Medicare plans require a supplemental policy to help pay what Medicare doesn’t pay for. I fail to see this as “socialism”. A socialized medical plan would be all Americans being brought into the VA system, where all health care facilities are the property of the gov’t and all the workers are federal employees. All the hospitals I have worked in, I was an employee of that institution, as were the other workers. The hospitals were non-profits. Most doctors had their own practices, some were employed by the hospital. Medicare didn’t change that.

    • johninPCFL

      There are several states that have only one or two health insurance companies. That’s not much competition, and the thinking is that allowing competition across state lines fosters competition and lowers costs. That completely ignores the process insurance companies go through to derive premium costs and that most differences are accounted for in policy differences, not locations. Once comparable policies are compared, the price differences are minimal – meaning that cross-state-line competition doesn’t lower prices.

      • Mama62

        But it makes for good talking points. Insurance companies don’t want to sell across style lines. They want to control what they can charge in individual states based on the actuarial information. Doctors and hospitals then have their own criteria for accepting specific insurance providers. Straw man argument.

  • ObozoMustGo

    Mr. Obozo, that smell in the room is NOT Fox News, it’s your sheet sandwich of a law called Obozodon’tcare.

    • omgamike

      Obozo, it’s gratifying to see you out there still trying to stir the pot. My fondest wish is that your computer will break down so that all of us can get back to having intelligent, on topic, discussions once again. Have a nice day.

      • iamproteus

        omgamike, what possesses you that you are gratified to see dog crap here (or anywhere for that matter) and why in the world would you wish it to have a nice day??? Are you not well?

      • idamag

        The juvenile certainly has not added anything to the discussion. He is more like a mouse in the pantry.

    • Granite Skyline

      Peddle your ClusterFox shizz elsewhere.

      • idamag

        It won’t do you any good to respond to the dipped in. He has been programmed and cannot think.

  • midway54

    Price is a Georgia medical doctor, who is about as politically obnoxious as Broun, also a Georgia physician who reportedly denied the length and details of human evolution. By the way, where is medical doctor Phil Gingrey at this point, who would complement the other two and form a trio of political crackpots from the same State.

    • plc97477

      Some of the states seem to have way more than their fair share of crackpots.

  • Urbane_Gorilla

    Left out of the discussion about is “What about all those people that would once again not qualify for insurance due to age or pre-existing conditions”.. This bill provides for “High Risk Pools”. Unfortunately, those States that already have High Risk Pools can’t fund them adequately. In other words, they’re running out of funding as covered here:

    Special report: Health insurance and high-risk pools

    and here:

    Funds run low for health insurance in state ‘high-risk pools’ – Washington Post

    All the Republicans have to offer is more of the same old BS they’ve been trotting out since Reagan. Their goal is to kill Obamacare, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, employment, our economy and any sense we may still have that the USA is a land of opportunity.

    • irishtap

      All true.

    • plc97477

      They also seem to be trying to kill our democracy.

      • Urbane_Gorilla

        And the ability of our government to even function: Republicans Have Cut Funding So Deeply That Government Employees Can’t Do Their Jobs –

  • irishtap

    This issue perhaps more than any other starkly illustrates the true character of the GOP. Their minds indoctrinated from a history of abject hatred of anything giving the common citizen a fair shake in this nations economy, or even the health care management of our own bodies. It wasn’t until coming across a PBS documentary about a clinic set up by medical volunteers, where thousands of Americans from four states traveled to an abandon farm, that I realized the magnitude of this problem. These people were those whom fell between the cracks of our convoluted and inhumane method of delivering “health care” in this country. Throngs of hurting, ailing folks living with treatable but ‘unaffordable illness’ waited for hours in the cold for a chance to be seen by a doctor in a swept out animal stall. I could not believe my eyes, that here, in this supposedly greatest country on earth, citizens were forced to subject themselves to this. Unfortunately the weekend clinic left many unseen.
    We have a system of healthcare that no longer uses the word cure too often. Most everything is “managable”, these days. We are nothing but a cash cow for unethical, even murderous pharmacuetical and and insurance companies. This form of mass extermination, inflicted on the millions of American victims over many decades by the ‘health insurance industry’, is the poster child for naked capitalism at it’s zenith. ‘Greatest country in the world’ – if true mankind is in serious trouble.

    • idamag

      I remember seeing an ad to contribute to free clinics. Keith Olberman was one of the board members. They showed one of the traveling free clinics in one of our southern areas. It looked like there was as many people in that line as was on the DC Mall for the tree lighting.

      • irishtap

        When I stop to think about all the people – all with hopes and dreams like myself, deemed ‘not worthy of receiving treatment’ due to some corporate actuarial table, it brings me anguish. To know so many languished and died needlessly from treatable illness. Not to mention the greatest cause of bankruptsy in this country, being attributed to costs related to treating an illness. I admit to being ashamed of my own long term ignorance.

        • idamag

          The Bible says “The meek shall inherit the earth.” In the Greek language meek was synonymous with teachable. You are teachable.

          • irishtap

            Thanks idamag…

  • Christopher Fowler

    The biggest problem here is that their plan is worse than no plan. What they want to do would make the system that the ACA replaces, look like a great thing.

    The Conservative traitors have never done anything that have helped this country, only harmed it.

  • howa4x

    They don’t want to offer an alternative simply because it will be like the giant piñata that Obama/Romney care has become for them. There will be competing plans to look at and if seniors feel that Medicare is under attack in any way they will come out in droves. Since they are the only true constituency of the GOP after million/billionaires, the republicans cannot afford to loose them. Seniors are very leery after the Ryan program to voucher Medicare was already floated. Price’s plan has some wishful thinking in it. The entire reason there is a mandate to buy insurance is because the insurance industry would not agree to end the practice of dropping people for pre-existing conditions or denying coverage unless they could make up the lost profit by enrolling healthy people who had to buy insurance but wouldn’t use it. So I think Price has to sit down with them 1st. The selling across state lines means no state regulations and people could end up with what they have now, inferior plans. Maybe republicans should finally say that the ACA was their Idea originally and take credit for any success it has which they should have done from the beginning.

    • jointerjohn

      As soon as the success of ACA begins to show in a way evident to the people of this country, that is exactly what they will do.

  • jointerjohn

    The basis for anything resembling a philosophy the republican party may have is “survival of the fittest”. There is no place for a humanely implemented health care system within that mindset. They despise everything that makes accommodation for the least fortunate. If they were to design a healthcare system it would have the secretary paying more than her CEO boss, just like the tax system they created.

  • itsfun

    Republicans have offered alaternatives. Representative Price from Georgia has for one. He took Obama at his word and called the White House with his ideas and alternatives. He never received a return call.