Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Trump and Republicans are determined to kill off health care for the poor

By SJ Otto
Once again President Donald Trump and his minions are attempting to gut and render useless the Affordable Care Act (known by most as Obamacare). The Republicans are coming up with changes to their own health care plan that will make Obamacare seem more and more like the system we had before Obamacare was passed. In other words, no system of helping poor and lower working class people to get the insurance they need to prevent them from dying of disease. The plan probably does not get rid of all the protections, but it will make them far too inadequate to do any good.
The latest glitch is a Republican plan to roll back the rules to force insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions, such as cancer. They already plan to eliminate coverage for some of the poorest Americans. Once they eliminate protection for pre-existing conditions, they really have no health care plan at all. We are back with the status quo before Obamacare was passed.
According to CNN:

“The bill would also significantly curtail federal support for Medicaid and allow states to require able-bodied adults to work. After 2020, states that expanded Medicaid would no longer receive enhanced federal funding to cover low-income adults, and those that hadn't expanded would be immediately barred from doing so.
And it would allow states to relax some key Obamacare protections of those with pre-existing conditions, which are among the health reform law's most popular provisions. States could apply for waivers to allow insurers to offer skimpier policies that don't cover the 10 essential health benefits mandated by Obamacare. Also, insurers would be able to charge higher premiums to those with medical issues if they let their coverage lapse. States requesting waivers would have to set up programs -- such as high-risk pools -- to protect insurers from high-cost patients.” 

While this new action takes a lot away from poor Americans it showers generous benefits on America’s wealthiest people and businesses. The Republicans have let everyone know whose side they are on. Money puts them in power and they take care of those moneyed interests:

“The GOP health care bill would eliminate Obamacare taxes on the wealthy, insurers and others, and get rid of the individual mandate imposed by Obamacare, officially known as the Affordable Care Act. Instead of the Obamacare subsidies that are tied to income and premiums, the GOP plan would provide Americans with refundable tax credits based mainly on age to purchase health insurance.”

One important factor in all of this is the so called Freedom Caucus. This group of Republicans is blatant in their attacks on the rights of poor people. The name “Freedom Caucus” seems more like a sick joke. The only freedom they care about is the freedom for rich people and businesses not to have to pay for any taxes or suffer any inconveniences from our government. For poor people, especially the working poor, they want no freedom at all, unless they believe the poor have freedom do die early and freedom from health care.
They talk about people’s choices, but for the less wealthy there is no freedom. A better name would be the Fascist Caucus.
It amazes me how nasty these Republicans are towards our poorest citizens. Many of these poor people work full time, or more. They contribute to the economy and yet they don’t have the basic rights to health care. Their lives are meaningless to the Republican Party, especially the so called Freedom Caucus.
The rest of the civilized western world provides health care to their citizens. Many nations consider health care a human right—but not here in the US. Here in this country the right of profiteers—insurance companies that profit off of the suffering of the sick and dying, are the only ones the government cares about. The Republicans are running a pogrom to kill off poor people in this country. Each day we watch the Republicans on TV finding new ways to help insurance companies make money at the expense of our less wealthy citizens and each day they find new ways to kill off poor people.
Each day the drama goes on. The bill should be called “The Republicans Don’t Care!”

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