Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump promised in September 2015 on 60 Minutes that when he got rid of Obamacare, “I am going to take care of everybody. Everybody’s going to be taken care of much better than they’re taken care of now.”
Yet there’s Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s plan in the House of Representatives that won’t cover everyone – and Ryan is just fine with that – as are many members of the Republican caucus fine including Virginia Congresswoman Barbara Comstock – no matter that Ryan is prepared to leave millions behind without health coverage who have been covered under Obamacare.
Asked how many would lose coverage, Speaker Ryan said on CBS’s Face the Nation, “I can’t answer that question.”
Incidentally, Mr. Trump is lobbying Congress to support Speaker Ryan’s plan, to calm the fears of Republican members with a conscience.
Vice President Pence said they need the support of every Republican Member to pass the measure in the House.
Some will die without the health care coverage guaranteed by Obamacare.
Others will find health care unaffordable and do without and suffer for it.
For example, Lovettsville’s Eden Reck, 10 years old, reportedly has had 40 hospitalizations in her life, because of life-threatening genetic conditions. Obamacare assures her family that she will continue to be treated. The lifetime cap eliminated by Obamacare means her three siblings will now be at risk for the $1 Million lifetime cap she might exhaust for her care alone.
Eden lives in the 10th Congressional District, represented by Ms. Comstock who supports a plan that will put Eden and her siblings at risk.
Mr. Trump also said last year, “I’m not going to cut Social Security like every other Republican, and I’m not going to cut Medicare or Medicaid.”
But Ryan’s plan compromises Medicare and cuts Medicaid. And Mr. Trump is leaning on Members to support Ryan’s plan.
The AARP wrote Congress to protest that Obamacare assured Medicare’s solvency through 2028 and Ryan’s plan weakens Medicare’s fiscal outlook, by repealing the .9 percent payroll tax on higher income workers.
Because of Medicaid, millions live healthy though they are relatively poor. Medicare and Medicaid provide services for those who suffer disabilities as well including eating, bathing, dressing, home modifications, nursing home care and other benefits such as hearing aids and eyeglasses. Ryan wants to impose caps on the recipients and AARP said the effect will be, “ultimately harming some of our nation’s most vulnerable citizens.”
Ms. Comstock has registered no objection. She has in fact turned a deaf ear to her constituents’ objections.
We have all grown accustomed to the Pinocchio effect that afflicts Mr. Trump – hardly a day goes by since his Inauguration when Mr. Trump’s campaign promise to do something, that he bragged he’d do for the greater good, better than anyone else could ever do, is replaced by, well, something else. This may, however, be Mr. Trump’s most craven campaign lie.
Congresswoman Comstock has gone to ground, refusing to face the voters in person at a Town Hall, like her mentor, Congressman Frank Wolf once convened, to answer for her wrong-headed support of Ryan’s plan, hiding behind digital conference calls controlled within an inch of her political life.
While Mr. Trump quotes Senator Bernie Sanders when it’s to Trump’s rhetorical advantage, he won’t be quoting what Sanders said on the talking head shows, “What this [Ryan Plan] has everything to do with is a massive shift of wealth from working people and middle-income people to the richest people in this country. It is a 275 billion dollar tax break for the top two percent. Millionaires will get about $50,000 a year in tax breaks, while at the same time 5-10 million people are going to lose their health insurance, premiums are going to soar.”
Mr. Trump has confused the simplicity of his demagogic 140 word tweets with complex policy that requires much more thought and discipline and dialogue, rather than despotic declarations.
We witnessed the unconstitutional debacle that was Mr. Trump’s Muslim ban, and now we see it again in this unfolding health care disaster, to compromise care carelessly, and thus shall it be known as “Trumpcareless.” As he might say, “Sad!”