Hold the phone, everybody! Stop the presses! John McCain, inescapable creature of the Sunday morning talk shows, has had an idea!!!
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said Wednesday that he would introduce a bill to repeal Obamacare and replace it with his own set of reforms.
… It is composed of conservative pet policies, such as tax credits for individuals and tort reform to stem medical malpractice lawsuits.
Well, isn’t that special. President Obama and the Democrats fight and fight and fight for reform. They barely manage to get a bill through an unfriendly Congress. They endure five-plus years of constant, relentless attack from the right. They barely survive a Supreme Court challenge, and then prevail in a 2012 election that was, at least in part, a referendum on health care reform. They beat back Republican attempts to tie Obamacare repeal to lifting the debt ceiling. And they take us most of the way down the road to Obamacare implementation.
And now, after all of that, John McCain has the colossal nerve to try to reopen the issue.
A little frickin’ late, isn’t it?
Does he really believe the President and the Democrats are going to dismantle their signature accomplishment just because he’s unrolling… er… a five-year-old leftover casserole from his unappetizing Presidential bid?
The central tenet, tax credits for purchasing health coverage, was also included in McCain’s 2008 presidential platform.
Normally I wouldn’t go to the trouble of posting a GMD diary about this absurd bit of political Kabuki. Except that it’s echoed by one of Vermont’s own, Republican Senate Minority leader Joe Benning. In a recent opinion piece posted by VTDigger and also published by God knows how many of our content-starved newspapers, Benning calls for setting aside partisan labels and taking a fresh look at our health care system.
After “objectively” assessing the pros and cons of the government and free-market approaches, Benning grandly offers:
Perhaps it is time to consider a hybrid system built on the best attributes of both sides.
Er, Joe. A couple of points:
— Obamacare already IS a hybrid system. It actually includes some of the best AND worst attributes of both sides, but that’s because of all the contortions and compromises needed to get reform through Congress. But Obamacare, while providing a structure of government oversight and regulation, leaves a whole lot of room for the free market to work its alleged magic.
— Benning writes as if we are only just now approaching the health care reform issue for the first time. The fact is, for those just tuning in, we’ve been fighting this battle for the last five-plus years. There have been endless debates, proposals and counter-proposals, and Our Side Won.
— Okay, three points. We’ve already spent a whole lot of money, time and toil on trying to implement a new system. Surely Joe Benning, being the good fiscal conservative that he is, wouldn’t want us to just throw all that away, would he?
Benning is a complete dunce if he really thinks he’s offering a serious proposal. What it really is, is yet another last-ditch Republican attempt to undo their string of defeats on health care reform. They’re desperately trying to get to the front of a parade that has already ended.
Furthermore, look at what he offers as a model for “hybrid” reform:
Take, for instance, our interstate highway system. Competition, with government-set parameters and monitoring, has built what is arguably the world’s best road system.
What the frak????? Our interstate highway system is a model of a hybrid approach? What planet does Joe Benning live on? The interstate highway system is far, far more centrallized and government-controlled than Obamacare. It’s actually much closer to Governor Shumlin’s single-payer model. Because in the interstate highway system, the federal government is the single payer.
Generally speaking, Joe Benning is one of the better Republicans in Vermont. But this? A Godawful, irrelevant mess, delivered much too late. Just like John McCain’s “new” plan.