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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2017 4:49 am 
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*decades

Luckily I will be dead* before they finish quite all of their project.

*After a normal healthy life. If I can get insurance.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:54 pm 
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At least they will now be debating openly, so that they'll have to publicly defend their ideas.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:53 pm 
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Sorry to say, they are not "debating openly" in any reasonable sense of the term. They are gleefully diving down the rabbit-hole. Their plan now is to try to pass tonight the so-called "skinny repeal" which apparently they were planning to draft over lunch today (you can't make this stuff up) which would repeal the individual and employer mandates, and which everyone from the insurance companies to the GOP senators themselves admit would be an utter disaster, on the assumption that the House won't pass it and they can proceed to work on a compromise between that and the bill the House already passed that somehow will then pass both houses (you really, really can't make this stuff up), but some of the GOP senators are balking because they want a guarantee from the House that the House won't just pass it with a conference (you really, really, really can't make this up). At this point, no one has any idea whether this will pass or not. It is the most insane piece legislating I have ever seen in all the time that I have closely watched the U.S. government, and that is saying something given some of the whacko things that have happened in recent years.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:08 pm 
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So at some point today I decided I'd lost the plot. Then I realized that so has everyone else. The insurance lobby is kicking into overdrive. This kind of uncertainty is not good for business.

Meanwhile, Trump decided to teach Murkowski a lesson by bullying Alaska. I doubt this will impress Murkowski (she lost a primary and won a general as a write-in) and I doubt it's going to impress Alaska either.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:39 pm 
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"Donald Trump threatens to protect the environment if Alaska senators don’t back health care bill https://t.co/IMuPcgdtVZ"

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:55 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
"Donald Trump threatens to protect the environment if Alaska senators don’t back health care bill https://t.co/IMuPcgdtVZ"


Well. I mean. You know.

Sigh. You really really really really can't make this stuff up.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:10 am 
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Thank you, Senators Collins, Murkowski, and McCain.

Is this thing finally dead? Or is it still going to lurch around, dribbling slime?

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:40 pm 
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Come on, Frelga, you've seen horror movies. It takes a lot more efforts than this to kill the villain.

In an ideal world (or even just a remotely reasonable one), the GOP would turn towards working with the Dems to stabilize the market and eliminate the obvious imperfections of the ACA that both sides could agree on. In this world ... .

I was happy to see John McCain standing his ground, though. I was sure he was going cave after his buddy Lindsey Graham did.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:18 pm 
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At the very least, they'll make another attempt if they manage to increase their majorities after the midterms. And you can be sure they'll spin their failure as "despite controlling the presidency, both chambers of Congress, and the governorships of 2/3 of the states, we still don't have enough power."


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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:19 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
Thank you, Senators Collins, Murkowski, and McCain.


Yes. Thank you.

Can people call their offices to thank them?

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:34 pm 
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Absolutely. I intend to send postcards to all three.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 5:06 pm 
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Thanks Frelga.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:42 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
Is this thing finally dead? Or is it still going to lurch around, dribbling slime?

They're trapped between their promises, their donors, and the general public. It's going to keep right on lurching.

I was expecting to wake up to a repeal. Didn't have time to get online before leaving for work but when I got in my car and tuned in to NPR they were covering state news. That's when I knew nothing happened - if the Senate passed something it would have been all over NPR's programming. When they got around to what happened in the Senate last night I admit I laughed at the folly of the whole thing. Will bipartisanship break out? Maybe. The GOP has shown it can't work with itself. But they're in a trap of their own making, so who the hell knows.

Thing is, once you take out the emotions and the consequences, it's a game. There are rules, there are strategies, and there are tactics. I was never on the McCain hate train that got going after the vote to open debate because after reading his speech on the floor I had a feeling that he had something up his sleeve. Either he had a plan or he knew of a plan. I didn't have much faith in the putative plan (like I said, I was expecting chaos in the insurance market by the end of the week) but I knew he was playing the game. And so it was. Murkowski and Collins held their ground all week long as allies came and went and then, finally, McCain dropped his bomb. I wonder if they knew.

Anyway, I really really want to fire Gardner.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:51 pm 
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Frelga wrote:
Absolutely. I intend to send postcards to all three.


What about the other 48 Senators that voted down the proposal. Are they not just as entitled to thanks?


Quote:
Is this thing finally dead? Or is it still going to lurch around, dribbling slime?


There already was a meeting today between former rivals Trump and Lindsey Graham in which the latter pushed his repeal plan which would convert federal funds for Medicaid and for subsidies to block grants to the states. I expect that this will be the next cart that the GOP will hitch its hopes to.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:17 pm 
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V, while the Democratic Senators held the line this time, they were not subject to the pressure and coercion from the GOP leadership and the administration. Although I won't try to talk you out of sending them postcards if you wish. ;)

That does raise a point that the Democratic Senators and Representatives felt absolutely no pressure from their constituents and donors to support the repeal, emphasizing just how unpopular it is.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:10 pm 
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To underscore the above point, I now see photos and tweets about Collins getting applause from passengers as she walks through the Bangor (Maine?) airport, and Schumer on Amtrak.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:58 pm 
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I'm so relieved that I can't even try to express it.

My understanding is that they can bring this to a vote under the Byrd rule (51 votes) only once a year, and they blew their one chance last night. Anything they try to pull going forward will require 60 votes. It isn't over, but if we all stay vigilant it is now much less likely to get anywhere.

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:43 pm 
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Trump, this morning.

"Unless the Republican Senators are total quitters, Repeal & Replace is not dead! Demand another vote before voting on any other bill!"

Reminds me of the old Demotivators poster. "Winners never quit. Quitters never win. But people who never quit and never win are idiots."

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2017 1:21 pm 
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One person who is credited with talking McCain into voting no on the skinny repeal bill is former Vice President Joe Biden. Biden and McCain are very long term frenimies who clashed respectfully for many years as their party's respective main voices on foreign relations. But they have a more personal and poignant bond, as Biden's son Beau passed away from the same brain cancer that McCain suffers (otherwise, there would be a good chance that Biden would now be president). It definitely appears that Biden had more sway with McCain than the current VP.

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 Post subject: Re: Health Care Reform
PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:20 pm 
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Primula Baggins wrote:
I'm so relieved that I can't even try to express it.

My understanding is that they can bring this to a vote under the Byrd rule (51 votes) only once a year, and they blew their one chance last night. Anything they try to pull going forward will require 60 votes. It isn't over, but if we all stay vigilant it is now much less likely to get anywhere.


I heard that, with the theories that this is why McCain voted yes to let the vote go forward. I also heard people say that no, it doesn't work like that, and I wasn't able to figure out which is right. Trump, of course, is urging the Republicans to ignore the rules.

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