Grahamcracker: Yesterday I mentioned that the Republicans were going to try and take another crack at repealing the ACA, because apparently they haven’t gotten the message that we want them to preserve it yet. Enter Lindsey Graham, Senator from South Carolina. Claiming that his party should be “politically horse whipped” if they were to give up trying to repeal Obamacare, he begged the President to keep the pressure on Republicans and released his own amendment towards that end. He’s apparently waiting to see how McConnell’s own re-draft of Trumpcare is received, which we should be hearing about soon, but we don’t know if Graham’s amendment would pass the 50-vote threshold because it doesn’t address the Moderate Republicans’ concerns about Medicare.
They Won’t Ever Stop: I have now been wrong about the Republicans twice. I’ve said on two separate occasions that something or other had ultimately killed the Republican health care repeal “for good”, and that we could move on to other issues. Maybe it was my own relief at such improbable victories that let my excitement get the better of me? Whatever it was, I can’t in good conscience say that kind of thing anymore. We must assume that the Republicans are never going to stop trying to strip away our health care- not if McConnell’s new draft fails, not if Graham’s amendment fails, not ever. The only real safeguard we could build is if we take back the House in 2018, putting a hard stop on any Senate repeal efforts.
Don’t Just Be Against Something: It is key that as we continue to fight each ACA repeal, we must demonstrate that we are for something as well as against something, lest we become the same amoral obstructionists that the Republicans were under Obama. There are policies and plans out there, of which we must remind both Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike. In the House, there’s the Medicare for All bill, HR 676. In the Senate, Bernie Sanders (surprise) is planning his own health care bill, and has introduced a separate plan that would allow Americans to buy medicine from other countries, which would save us billions, both as private citizens and as taxpayers.
We must remind our elected officials of our support for plans like these because it lets them know that we’re not just plugging our ears and stomping our feet in a temper tantrum of opposition; we are resisting as well-informed adults who’ve made decisions based on the projected impacts to ourselves and our communities.