The LA Times reports on the Senate health care bill:
Congressional Republicans, who for years blasted the Affordable Care Act for disrupting Americans’ healthcare, are now pushing changes that threaten to not only strip health coverage from millions, but also upend insurance markets, cripple state budgets and drive medical clinics and hospitals to the breaking point.
….The cascading effects of such a retrenchment will reach far beyond those who lose coverage, according to doctors, hospital leaders, insurance executives, patient advocates and state officials across the country….Governors and state legislators, facing huge reductions in federal Medicaid funding, may soon have to decide whether to reduce services, limit who can enroll in the healthcare safety net or make cuts to other state programs, such as education or transportation….Those coverage losses, in turn, will put new pressures on doctors, clinics and hospitals as they face growing numbers of patients with no insurance who are unable to pay their medical bills.
….The strain on hospitals and doctors will reach beyond the healthcare system. American employers, which provide health coverage to more than 150 million workers and their families, could see their costs rise as hospitals and physicians try to make up for losses they incur caring for more uninsured patients….It also will probably hit employees, who will see insurance premiums increase and wages stagnate as businesses shift healthcare costs onto workers, as has happened repeatedly in the past.
Republicans have been saying for seven years that they want to repeal Obamacare, so I can hardly pretend to be surprised that they’re doing it after winning the 2016 election. But now that it’s actually happening, I still find it hard to believe. What kind of people do this just so the rich can get a modest tax cut? How cold-blooded do you have to be? Especially when Obamacare’s modest problems could be fixed with nothing more than a few minor changes and additional funding of $5-10 billion or so. Of course, if we did that the millionaires wouldn’t get their tax cut.
This whole thing is just profoundly depressing. What the hell kind of country is this?