Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Catch of the Day

Kevin Drum:
Republicans are loudly proclaiming right now that they want to eliminate the part of the law that forces everyone to buy insurance. But that's exactly the part of the law that insurance companies like. In fact, they want to see it strengthened. At the same time, they want to get rid of the popular parts of the law that keep insurance companies from figuring out ways to screw patients. But those are the provisions that Republicans say they'll keep if we turn over Congress to them.

And yet, the insurance companies are massively funding Republicans this cycle anyway. Why would that be? It's almost as if they're sure that Republicans are just blowing campaign smoke and will support their agenda once they're safely in office.

Good call.  Meanwhile, as for my prognosticating...I was surprised at how little emphasis the GOP put on the individual mandate before the bill passed.  Since ACA became law, I've expected their opposition to center not on the mandate, but on anything bad that happens to anyone that is in any way related to health care, insurance, doctors, hospitals, whatever.  There's been some of that, but my impression (granted, without any kind of careful study) has been that the emphasis has been on the mandate, and especially on the (bogus, in my view) constitutional arguments against it, along with general anti-government rhetoric.  So if my impression of that is correct, then my earlier prediction is generally wrong, so far.  But I don't know. Those of you who are seeing campaign ads this year -- what arguments are Republicans and their allies using most often against ACA?


  1. Here in Ohio, all adds I've seen against Democrats who voted for ACA have used the "This Democrat voted to gut Medicare and increase the costs of healthcare" line. And there are lots of these adds.

  2. The ad I've seen says "I'm not a witch."

  3. Where I live, in New York, the ads have characterized the ACA as a "government takeover of health care." There's been no talk of the actual effects of the bill one way or the other. BTW - in my district - traditionally Republican but held by Democrat John Hall since the 2006 election - the Republican running against Hall is a doctor.

  4. Yes of course that is the part the insurance companies like, indeed it was a REPUBLICAN idea. So .. of the Dems are smart they will say, "woiks for me!" and let them run with it. .. then watch and wait and see what happens.

    Seriously, the whole healthcare system is such a convoluted mess anyway. As long as you are trying to maintain an outmoded, outdated, nonfunctioning system which offers ZERO to the marketplace ... then fine. Screw 'em. Get rid of the mandate. I mean, I GET why it's there, but clearly other people don't so .. .fine. Let the Dems be heroes riding in on the white horse to save America from the mandate and watch as the insurance companies try to save it.

    Single payer, people. It's the only thing that will work. Get on board.

  5. Republicans seem to be hitting the cutting-Medicare angle really hard. A bit ironic given their otherwise anti-government rhetoric, but it makes sense given the program's popularity, the older slant of midterm electorates, and seniors' general distrust of Obama.

  6. "Single payer, people. It's the only thing that will work. Get on board."

    During the height of the debate last year, the world rankings put the US something like 37th, but Canada wasn't much better, it ranked 30th.
    If changing from the American model, (rather than trying to patch it up), I would have thought one should imitate one of the most successful models.
    Canada was and is constrained in what it can do by proximity to US (ie if we had tried to adopt a system too different from US, doctors could -and some did- migrate to the US).


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