Most Americans would like to believe that politicians are, more or less, concerned about the well-being of every citizen regardless of their socio-economic status or party affiliation. The idea that any politician would actively pursue preventing every citizen of the United States from having decent healthcare is beyond comprehension, but like their assault on women’s rights, children, senior citizens, and the poor, wanting to keep over 30 million Americans sick is not so out-of–character for Republicans. It has been two years since President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law and the Republicans are still desperately attempting to keep tens-of-millions Americans sick.
The vicious campaign to repeal the ACA is still the primary goal of Republicans and each presidential hopeful has promised to make deleting the health law their first order of business if they win the White House. Representative Paul Ryan’s Heritage Foundation budget promises to save $1.5 trillion from the national debt by defunding the ACA, and Senator Roy Blunt’s amendment to give healthcare providers moral grounds to deny insurance coverage to any person for any health issue are attempts to eliminate the health law in lieu of outright repeal. There are several reasons Republicans hate the concept of a healthy population, and independently they are egregious, but in total they are downright evil.
Besides providing health insurance coverage for over 30 million Americans, one of the key features of the health law is correcting gender discrimination that unfairly targets women. It goes beyond contraception coverage the religious right detests and covers such issues as unfair pricing for women’s coverage and preventative cancer screenings among many others. The argument from Republicans that quality healthcare is a privilege reserved for Americans with good jobs is code for restricting women from the basic right to good health and if the GOP can punish middle and low-income Americans in the process, then they have achieved their goal.
The Republicans cannot come up with one legitimate reason for denying every American healthcare so they resorted to fear-mongering and threats that border on terrorism, and regardless how unbelievable their assertions are, many Americans are certain President Obama imposed Socialized medicine on the population with claims that healthcare reform was “illegal and shoved down Americans’ throats.” Earlier in the week, Willard Romney resorted to his inclination to lie about the health law that closely resembles the healthcare reform he presided over while he was governor of Massachusetts, and as usual, his lies are easy to disprove. One of Romney’s lies is especially interesting because according to him, “Thirty percent of employers said they are going to drop the coverage for their employees when Obamacare is installed.” Disproving Willard’s assertion not only makes him a liar, it proves the health law is a necessity for working Americans as much as it is for the poor, underemployed, and uninsured.
Romney’s assertion that 30% of employers will discontinue coverage was a projection in a report by McKinsey they quickly clarified amid controversy surrounding the report. McKinsey said their report was “not intended as a predictive economic analysis of the impact of the Affordable Care Act. Rather, it captured the attitudes of employers and provided an understanding of the factors that could influence decision making related to employee health benefits.” Despite Romney’s lie, the ACA has nothing to do with employer’s dropping coverage, and according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), they projected that 3 to 5 million employees may lose coverage, but the majority of employers will continue offering coverage when insurance exchanges start up. A report from the National Institute for Health Care Reform found that over the past decade, the number of Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance “dropped from approximately 70% down to nearly 50% and it is not due to an aging population. In a chart on the sources of health insurance for non-elderly Americans, the decline in employer-provided health insurance began before 2001 and will continue unabated well into the future. Many countries around the world choose better, less-expensive, and more universal ways of providing healthcare than depending on capricious employers who may change carriers or coverage depending on what the employer deems necessary and how much profit they can hide in offshore accounts.
The ACA eliminates the necessity of workers to depend on employer-provided health plans besides giving 30-million Americans access to the right of good health. Republicans, and Romney in particular, claim the ACA is prohibitively expensive, but they have little issue with adding trillions to the national deficit with tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations. However, it is reasonable that the real issue is not just the cost or that Republicans want more Americans to suffer from inadequate healthcare.
Republicans hate any successful government program because if government works for the greater good of the population, they will have a more difficult time destroying America’s democracy. If Americans begin trusting in democracy and believe the government can provide quality healthcare, maybe the public will regain faith that the government can do many other things well that help Americans. It is Republican’s worst nightmare and decimates the Reagan-era meme that government is inherently bad, does not work, and is overly intrusive.
There are two wildly popular and extremely successful government healthcare programs that Republicans are on a tear to dismantle. Medicare, the single-payer system, has provided efficient healthcare for senior citizens and low-income Americans since its inception, and its success is the primary reason Republicans want to destroy it. The Veterans Administration healthcare system is true socialized medicine and provides the nation’s veterans with high-quality care free of charge. In Medicare and the VA healthcare system, Americans, through their contributions and tax dollars provide healthcare for seniors, veterans, Native Americans, prisoners, children, and disabled Americans and like the ACA, Republicans have attempted various means to ensure that more Americans suffer from ill-health by defunding or eliminating those programs. They are vile human beings with no humanity or compassion for anyone who is not filthy rich.
The reasons Republicans claim are valid for eliminating the ACA are non-existent, and it boils down to their contempt for the American people who are not wealthy. The Republicans promised to repeal and replace the ACA as soon as they took control of the House in 2011, and true to form, their first act was voting to repeal the law, but over a year later they have offered nothing whatsoever that can be construed as a replacement. The Massachusetts health care law Willard Romney signed has been a great success story, and he cannot distance himself from it fast enough in his attempts to pander to the Republican establishment and teabaggers who still think they will lose their doctors or fall prey to Sarah Palin’s purported “death panels” that have never materialized. Republicans convinced teabaggers that the individual mandate to carry health insurance in the ACA is a form of Obama tyranny, but there is a solution for them. If they feel strongly enough that they can survive without healthcare coverage, then they do not get to accept Medicare or Medicaid when they fall ill and their insurance carrier (if they have any) decides to drop them, because if Republicans have their way, that is what lies in store for all Americans should they repeal the ACA and destroy Medicare and Medicaid. However, Democrats and President Obama have compassion for all Americans and will not allow mean-spirited barbarians like Republicans to take Medicare, Medicaid, and the ACA funding and hand it to the wealthy.
Republicans are just evil and their prime directive is destroying the government to replace it with a corporate-controlled theocracy to guarantee life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to the wealthy and evangelical teabagger fanatics they have convinced the government is out to tyrannize with a universal health law. Working to deny good health to all Americans is the height of depravity and belies Christians’ mandate to care for your neighbor, and is more in line with the Satanist faith supported by Ayn Rand. It is sad really, that two years after the ACA was signed into law, Republicans and their presidential hopefuls still make eliminating the health law their first priority, and for Romney to lie about the law informs the depth of contempt they all have for the American people. However, the people should not be surprised because whether it is jobs, tax cuts for the rich, entitlements for the oil industry, or spending cuts that hurt children, the Republican opposition to good health for all Americans is just another piece of evidence that the only segment of the population Republicans work for are the rich who are “privileged” to afford quality healthcare. The full implementation of the ACA will change that privilege into a right that every American deserves and that may be the biggest insult to Republicans.