It began in the fall of 2009 as the 2010 election cycle was revving up, and it continued right through November of 2016. From one rally to the next Republican incumbents and challengers for the U.S. House and Senate alike lined up in front of their constituents to denounce the Affordable Care Act; aka Obamacare. At pricey private fundraisers the rhetoric against Obamacare grew even sharper and more deliberate. Show votes were regularly held in the U.S. House under Speaker Boehner repealing Obamacare. Conservative surrogates and non-profit think tank leaders joined in on the rhetorical show bravely exclaiming their intentions to dump Obamacare and return the health insurance business back to the power of markets.
I know. I was there. I was a lead candidate for North Carolina’s 4th district in 2010. After redistricting I was a lead candidate for North Carolina’s 2nd district in 2014, and again for a second time in 2016.
During the 2010 election cycle Republican doctor and nursing candidates came out of the woodwork and were all the rage on the campaign trail. They hated Obamacare, and they knew best because they were doctors and nurses. It made no matter that these doctors and nurses typically didn’t have a clue about the economics of health insurance and medical care, they were medical experts who knew best. Renee Ellmers (NC-2) was one of the best examples of these. Nothing stopped the Obamacare train from rolling.
During the 2012 election cycle Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan didn’t go a day without denouncing Obamacare and promising to repeal and replace the disastrous program. Incumbents in the House complained about their soft brethren in the Senate who wouldn’t take on Harry Reid and his fellow Democrats aggressively enough. Nothing stopped the Obamacare train from rolling.
During the 2014 election cycle the rhetoric against Obamacare continued apace and the prospects for control by the GOP in the both the House and the Senate encouraged promises of repeal and replace with an emphasis and certainty that had thus far been unmatched. Nothing stopped the Obamacare train from rolling.
During the 2016 election cycle cracks began to show in the united front put up by the GOP to take down Obamacare as the prospect to actual get rid of the program became increasingly real. Leaders began to balk, hesitate, second guess the wisdom of ending the program; it could be to costly. What? Nothing stopped the Obamacare train from rolling.
Obamacare has proven to be the failure I said it would be in 2010, 2014, and 2016. The evidence is now clear for all to see. The growth in premiums, the rise in deductibles, and excessive cost burden on the Medicaid system, the ongoing ruin of health insurer’s balance sheets and income statements, and crushing financial impact on tens of millions of families are our best indicators of the failure of this socialist utopian policy prescription.
Voters have given the GOP the power they need to repeal and replace Obamacare. They’ve given them the nod to do so recognizing there are short-term costs voters are ready to bear to get rid of the program. What does the GOP do? Go soft; second guess; whinge and cringe, and hesitate while American families struggle and individual insurers get absolutely crushed under the unfair cost burdens of the program.
The GOP has had more than six years to prepare to do what they said they would. What does it mean that they are not prepared to act? They are liars, and they are afraid. They are compromised Americans caught up in business as usual of helping those with access and ignoring those without. The program is dying under its own weight and still the leaders of the GOP, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell wait and fuss. They’re interests don’t align with the average American’s interest.
All those lying GOP incumbents should be repealed and replaced in 2018. Until then, get rid of this dam program beginning with eliminating the legal mandate to buy health insurance under penalty of the law.
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