Friday, February 21, 2020

Kaiser Confirms Trump’s Own HHS. Finds NO Evidence Obamacare Collapsing. On Track For Its...

Just recently Donald Trump’s own Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that Obamacare is 'working as intended' and 'stabilizing’, exposing the big Trump Republican lie that the markets are collapsing. This has to be one of the biggest...
U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr mitch mcconnell...

Mitch McConnell is a sad, sad turtle

Mitch McConnell clearly did not have a speech ready for this moment. McConnell was carrying only the “happy” envelope as Republicans called Mike Pence down to the Senate fully expecting that they had the votes they needed to pass the “skinny repeal.”...
DonkeyHotey / Flickr trump mcconnell ryan caricature...

Trump says that "Obamacare is dead." So, why is McConnell learning CPR?

You know, this would be sad if it wasn't so funny. Since the day that the federal government gave out the first freebie to the public the rule has been...

The heroic Senator with severe cancer who interrupted treatment to vote… NO

She got no standing ovation.  She got no mainstream media lauds for...
Gage Skidmore / Flickr donald trump arm up...

Donald Trump Proudly Tweets He’s Destroying Health Care Economy, That Employs Millions Of Americans

Yes, he did.  We already know Donald Trump’s executive order to cripple and eventually destroy the health care markets is going to cost millions of Americans huge premium rate hikes and their health care. “So-called American President” is...

After the midterms, remember when I spoke of “incremental change?” Here’s what it could...

In the euphoric days following the Democratic steamroller in the US House, the conversation quickly turned, since as Democrats we’re actually concerned with governing, The Democratic challengers had made quite a few rather concrete promises, and the question was how to actually get anything done in a split congress. One possible solution was to pass promises made through the House, and then let Yertl the Turtle scuttle them in the Senate, enabling the Democrats to put more pressure on flipping the Senate to get those measures passed.That’s a perfectly valid strategy, since it shows that we’re doing our part, and it’s McConnell and the Senate that are stifling popular measures. My personal suggestion was that we consider using incremental steps on big issue legislation. Medicare-for-all was a perfect example. It’s popularity in polling is now well over 50%. and a lot of candidates touted it in their campaigns, but it’s not something that could be passed in this congress , Or even in a Democratic Senate that lacked 60 votes to break a filibuster. So don’t even try. Remember, a walk scores the same run as a homer if you can get all the way around the bases. My suggestion was to break Medicare-for-all into smaller, incremental pieces, each one of which itself is popular, and yet sets the table for future incremental steps. The example I chose was prescription drug prices. Medicare and Medicaid combined are the largest purchasers of prescription drugs in the United States. And yet they are at the mercy of the big pharma companies, forced to pay the “going freight.” Pass a bill that allows Medicare and Medicaid to negotiate directly with the drug companies for lower, bulk prices. And if they refuse, then threaten to negotiate directly with Canadian drug companies for FDA approved alternates. Since the GOP base is largely made up of older, lower income, white Americans that are currently on either Medicare of Medicaid, good luck killing that bill in the Senate, and see what it gets you.The next increment would be to allow Medicare and Medicaid to negotiate directly with insurance company medical “groups” of hospitals and physicians for lower rates. See how it goes? Well, one of the candidates currently running for President on the Democratic side is proposing to do exactly that, but writ large, and on a much sneakier (which I of course love) level. In her televised town hall in Michigan on MSNBC Monday night, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand floated her own vision of Medicare-for-all, on an incremental level. One possibility that has been floated was for anybody over the age of 50 or 55 to be able to voluntarily “buy in” to Medicare. This is a totally sensible plan, since it allows those most likely to be uncovered by private or company provided insurance access to healthcare, and it also minimized the “high risk” pool for insurance companies. Gillibrand’s plan is subtly different, but that subtle difference make all the difference in the world. Her plan would allow anybody not covered by private insurance to “guy into” Medicare, regardless of their age. It would leave people already covered by private or company provided medical insurance the option to keep their coverage if they wished. In my humble opinion, if this bill passed, it would lead to Medicare-for-all […]
DonkeyHotey / Flickr trump drump major clown caricature...

World’s best pretend deal maker sabotages real world Trumpcare deal

Donald Trump summoned all Republican Senators to the White House yesterday so he could use his Extreme Deal-making Power to bring the Republican health care bill to a successful close. Only … not one word of that is true. First, Mitch McConnell set...
Screencapture / CNN cnn obamacare repeal fails...

Watch and listen to the audible gasps as McCain gives the thumbs down next...

Like thieves in the night, Mitch McConnell and his health care raiders were set to vote on a “skinny repeal” of the Affordable Care Act. McConnell scheduled a vote on the "Health Care Freedom Act" (which would serve as a way to free tens of millions...
CNN / YouTube Did Hillary Clinton lie to Congress...

A Tale Of Two Bills

This is my favorite time of the year. After spending three years basically sitting around, using their thumbs to conduct self colonoscopies, members of both chambers of congress, the House and the Senate, remove the aforementioned thumbs, wipe them off, and desperately try to get something, anything done, so that they have at least one positive accomplishment to show the voters when they scurry back home net year to beg for another round of suckling at the public teat. It’s official. Both the US House and the US Senate are working separately on drug pricing bills, with Trump keeping an eagle eye on the process from the White House. Yeah, right. I think we all pretty well know by now that the only thing that His Lowness keeps an eagle eye on is the driveway of the White House, waiting for the Grubhub truck to pull up. But this is important. It’s important not only because of the actual subject of the bill, and its importance to millions of Americans, but even more so, it is critically important because of the process that is being used to craft this particular piece of legislation. And as with all things in Washington DC, the devil is in the details. Normally, legislation originates in the House. They write the bill, whine about it, tack all kinds of unnecessary shit onto it, whine about it some more, and then vote to pass it. If it passes, it moves on to the Senate, where, if things are working properly (ha, ha), the Majority leader calls it to the floor for debate and a vote. If it passes, it goes to the President’s desk for his signature. If the Senate tinkers with it and passes it, it goes back to the House for another vote on the amended bill. It’s all a very dignified, slow motion waltz, with all of the attendant pomp and circumstance. But this time is different, because this time, each chamber is working on a separate bill on the same issue. Even the rocket rangers in congress realize that it’s stupid and self defeating to sit there and pass two different bills on the same subject back and forth to each other to vote on, so there’s a completely separate process for handling this kind of congressional kerfuffle. And that process is called reconciliation. Here’s how it works. Each chamber will craft, debate, and pass its own version of the bill. Once both bills are passed in their respective chambers, the majority and minority leaders in both chambers will appoint a team of crack negotiators, usually the ones with the cleanest thumbs, who will then sit down in a conference room, and hammer out a final bill made up of a dogs breakfast of the two original bills. Once the unified bill is completed, it goes to each chamber for debate and an up or down, vote, with no changes allowed by either chamber. Here’s why the process is so critical. Normally, when the House passes a bill, McConnell just wipes his ass with it and sends it to a committee to die, it never comes up for a vote. And f he does call it up for a “show” vote, that requires a “cloture” vote to end debate and have a final vote, which requires 60 votes. This is where a party can filibuster a vote, […]
Wil C. Fry / Flickr trump is evil sign...

Trump Threatens Blackmail If Murderous Republican "Health Care" Scam Is Not Passed.

It’s no surprise that threatening the lives of Americans comes remarkably easy to an Administration knee deep in an FBI investigation of its own criminality. With its willing Republican allies in the U.S. Congress, apparently it comes even easier: ...

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