Conservatives On Health Care — Then And Now

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Obama Care insured 20 million additional Americans. Since Trump has been president, 27 million Americans have lost insurance.

My Facebook page has long been a lively place for discussion where all points of view are welcome. I’ve always had a good number of Republicans and conservatives who post on my page.

One of the interesting features about Facebook is that your memories come back on a daily basis. The most interesting memories and discussions are ones that focused on the many successes of the Obama Administration. We had an especially interesting discussion on Obama Care on May 17, 2015.

My initial post on May 17, 2015: For the first time ever, nine in ten Americans now have health insurance. In 2015, rate of uninsured population in states that didn’t expand Medicaid was nearly twice that of states that did. Armageddon or the end of America hasn’t happened. What will happen first? The end of America or an up or down vote on the long promised GOP ACA replacement plan?

Then I got some responses from both opponents and supporters of the ACA. Here are the highlights.

Con: At what cost to tax payers? Obama care is collapsing of its own weight. Costs to consumers have sky rocketed even with the promise of a $2,500 savings per family. Oh, and that family doctor Obama promised we could keep?

Pro: I am always amazed at the “at what cost” question when the USA is at 18% of GDP.

Con: Obamacare was rammed down the throats of the American people with no discussion. Democrats blindly followed the leader with “You can read the bill when we pass the bill.” It is too expensive, hurts job growth, hasn’t reduced costs, and has raised the cost of healthcare. It is an abject failure of government taking over the healthcare industry.

Pro: I kept all of the excellent doctors I had previously seen through UNMC-Omaha with a BCBS Obamacare plan. Unless you have experienced Obamacare, I don’t think you are able to comment. I see no change from my prior employee based plan. I am very pleased with my plan and have already used it extensively.

Pro: 8 million people lost insurance coverage when George W. Bush was president and the GOP/conservatives did nothing.

Con: Why is healthcare the government’s responsibility? It is only a matter of time before healthcare is used as a political weapon (death squads).
The VA is a perfect example.

Con: “You’ll have to pass it before you can read it.”
There was no negotiation with congress. Not one republican voted for it because they didn’t have access to the bill to read it.

Pro: Zero up or down votes on a replacement plan.

I bumped the thread on May 17, 2020 and added my own observations about developments on health care since that date:

Now this is an interesting thread. 5 years ago, 90% of Americans were insured. Since then, Trump promised to “insure everybody” and “great health care at a tiny fraction of the cost.” The GOP replacement plan in 2017 would have taken away insurance from 20 million Americans and gutted pre-existing condition protections. The bill was so bad that the House GOP voted to exempt themselves from it. Trump and Ricketts have filed a lawsuit aimed at repealing the ACA. If Trump “wins,” 20 million Americans would lose insurance during a pandemic. Pre-existing condition protections would be ended. In the last 60 days, 27 million American have lost insurance coverage.

It looks like there were some process complaints in this thread about the passage of the ACA. In 2017, the Trump Care bill was drafted in top secret by a handful of Republicans and lobbyists. Democrats weren’t included in the negotiations. There were no hearings and no CBO score. The GOP Congressional leadership only allowed a few hours of floor debate. This way back machine is really interesting.

There were lots of complaints about the costs of Obama Care. Since Trump has been in office, the annual deficit has increased from $585 billion to $3.7 trillion.

Former Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer: “The only silver lining to the dark cloud of the Trump era is the daily reminder of how full of shit conservative critics of Obama were.”

I’m a trial lawyer, a Democratic activist and a sports fan.

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