NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING
DONATE TODAY


  March 13, 2017

Battle Over Health Care Reveals Stark Contrast Between Party Self- Reflection


Republicans are engaged in a fierce debate about the future of their party while the Democratic Party appears uninterested in re-examining its identity, argues Bill Curry
Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here
   


audio

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter



I support the Real News because without The Real News we would have no real news at all. - WWH
Log in and tell us why you support TRNN


biography

Bill Curry was White House counselor to President Clinton and a two-time Democratic nominee for governor of Connecticut. He is at work on a book on President Obama and the politics of populism.


transcript

Battle Over Health Care Reveals Stark Contrast Between Party Self-
ReflectionJAISAL NOOR: Republican lawmakers in the House are falling over each other to repeal, and replace, the Affordable Care Act -- or Obamacare -- with their goal of getting a bill to the senate by the end of the month.

SENATOR: What our problem is, and what we're trying to do, we're going to repeal and replace Obamacare, and we're going to do it with a three-pronged approach. Number one is what we're talking about right now. This is what the Ways and Means Committee have marked up this morning, what the Commerce Committee is in the middle of right now. That's called reconciliation. That's the American Healthcare Act.

There are only so many things you can do in that bill, because of the Senate Floor Rules of Reconciliation. You can't put everything you want in that legislation, because if you did, it would be filibustered, and you couldn't even bring it up for a vote in the Senate.

JAISAL NOOR: The proposal is backed by President Trump, who pushed for it on Friday.

DONALD TRUMP: And this is the time we're going to get it done. We're working together. We have some great results. We have tremendous spirit, and I think it's something that's just going to happen very shortly.

JAISAL NOOR: Critics note the proposal could leave millions without coverage, and give a massive tax break to the wealthy. But it's also exposed rifts within the Right, with some calling the proposal, "Obamacare Light," and demanding a full repeal.

SENATOR: Because I'm not the only voice saying this. And so, what they should do is, clean it up. Get rid of the Obamacare Light stuff. Get rid of the taxes, the subsidies, the mandates, the bailouts, and just do repeal.

JAISAL NOOR: We are joined to discuss this, by Bill Curry. He's a columnist for Salon.com, The Daily Beast. A former White House Counsellor to President Clinton.

So, what interests do you see behind these divisions among the Republicans? Or are their divisions purely ideological? You see the hardline free-marketers versus the more moderate Republicans.

BILL CURRY: We would have thought before the election that whichever party won, would have a period of great unity. And that whatever party lost would be cast into a years-long debate over its fundamental identity. And, instead, the opposite seems to be happening.

The party that won is being cast into a bitter civil war over its fundamental values and meaning. And the civil war is between its President and itself in many ways. And the party that lost, the Democrats, can't seem to still get up a real discussion about what they stand for, or where they're going.

It's been a few months now and the Democrats haven't asked themselves -- how would they fix Obamacare? Here's something the Republicans say that's right, "It's broken. Has been from the beginning." Are they going to really commit to a public option? Are they going to finally embrace single payer? Are they going to put a plan of their own on the table?

JAISAL NOOR: The website The Hill is reporting most of the conservative attacks in the Republican Healthcare Bill are targeted at House Majority Leader, Paul Ryan, not at President Trump. Why do you think that is, after all, Trump says he supports the Bill 100%?

BILL CURRY: In the real extreme among the House Caucus, and we don't know what the numbers are at this point, you know, for sure -- how that Caucus is really going to break down between Ryan and his various critics. I don't think there'll be the numbers to pass a Bill. But how the Caucus breaks down, I'm just not sure.

But again, among the hyper-right they have a sneaking suspicion that somehow somebody is going to get some actual healthcare out of the Bill. And that's just not an acceptable outcome. And so, you know, even the health savings and count subsidies, even the promises to delay the implementation, even the slightest thing that suggests that only nine million, instead of 12 million, people will lose their coverage, has them upset. I don't think, I don't know how big that group is but it won't go along with anything except an absolute Libertarian fantasy, utter privatization, and deregulation, of the market.

JAISAL NOOR: And so, the Republicans have been so focused on demanding Obamacare get repealed and replaced for years now. And now all of a sudden it seems like they are scrambling and disorganized to put something together.

BILL CURRY: Well, you know, part of it is just the descent of all politics into mere message politics. They've been calling for repeal and replace for six years without ever asking themselves, you know, for sure what they really wanted to replace it with. It's a long time to go without asking yourself any searching questions about what it is you're actually proposing.

And so, now they're just coming face-to-face with the fact that they themselves have just treated this as a political football. And they're also coming face-to-face with the fact that their own ideology is so completely bankrupt. There's nothing they have to say about any of these issues. There's nothing they have to propose that would actually be able to put a solution on the table. And so, again the iron here is that they won. They won without any answers. They won without any consensus. And they won also, and this is important, with a man who is mentally unbalanced and extreme in a way no high elected American politician has been in my lifetime and maybe in our history.

And so, they get up every morning wondering if this is the day he's going to be carted out, you know. And you know, this is the day he's going to finally cross the line, in terms of his own behavior, mental health. I mean, they seriously, they don't talk about it but they understand it as well as we do. And so, they're just kind of frozen. I just don't see how they come together on a major issue in the Congress. So, in the Congress they'll be gridlocked within the Republican Party over their own agenda, in part because it doesn't work, and in part because the President opposes it. And then the President will be just tweeting -- and giving out Executive Orders -- and creating international embarrassments on his own.

So, the Trump campaign will continue in the White House and the old Republican order will continue in the Congress, and I don't see much happening. Except whatever, you know, what blows up. I don't see much good happening on purpose.

JAISAL NOOR: The Real News will keep following this story.

-------------------------

END



Comments

Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

latest stories

Growing Discontent with Corruption Brings Thousands of Russians to the Streets
Will Dems Derail Sanders's Push for Public Option?
Arrest of Omar Barghouti Comes Amidst Upsurge in International Support for Boycott of Israel
Baltimore Mayor's Veto of $15/Hr Bill Shows Corporate Wing of Democrats Alive and Well
Military-Industrial Complex Pushes Nuke Modernization, Risking Confrontation with Russia
Empire Files: The Sikh Experience in America
Nebraskan Landowners Resist Keystone XL By Refusing to Sell Their Property to TransCanada
Study Links Extreme Weather Events to Climate Change
Sixth Year of War in Syria Marked by Tremendous Civilian Casualties
The Protest-Resignation of UN Under-Secretary Dr. Rima Khalaf
Climate Catastrophe Is Here: 2016 Hottest Year on Record
Millions for Prisoners Human Rights March in D.C. Set for August
"Wealthcare" Defeated: Health Care For All Back on the Agenda
Defending the Climate in the Age of Trump
Baltimore Public School Funding Pales in Comparison to Private Education Spending
Rattling the Bars: Women and Incarceration
Trump-Republican Alliance in Disarray?
Baltimore Mayor's Veto of $15 Wage Protects Policy of Subsidizing Wealthy, Councilperson Says
The Truth Behind the War on Immigrants
Were Haitian Police Behind Assassination Attempt on Aristide?
New Provisions Eliminate Healthcare From GOP 'Wealthcare' Bill
Why Further Revelations on Trump's Russian Connections Might Fail to Bring Him Down
18 Million U.S. Citizens Exposed to Lead-Contaminated Water Systems
Russia vs. USA: Who is the Threat, Who is the Aggressor? (2/2)
Should Sanders Continue the Fight Outside the Democratic Party?
Fed Inflation Target Keeping Wages Low, People Out of Jobs
Is Trump Dangerous for Russia?
Was the Georgian Conflict Started to Elect John McCain President in 2008? Pt.1
Will the NDP Adopt Pro-BDS Platform?
Massive Cuts to EPA Threaten Communities Already Suffering From Pollution, Climate Change

TheRealNewsNetwork.com, RealNewsNetwork.com, The Real News Network, Real News Network, The Real News, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of Independent World Television inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and The Real News Network.

All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network. Click here for more

Problems with this site? Please let us know

Managed Wordpress Hosting