medical cartoon - about duct tape and nail clippers What’s wrong with ‘politics as usual’?
When President Obama decided that all Americans should have access to health insurance, the Democrats were enthusiastic and the Republicans were outraged. The Republicans called it a giant step toward socialized medicine and the Democrats were beside themselves with joy. I also remember President Obama saying,

“If you like your plan, you can keep your plan, If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor, too. The only change you’ll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold." President’s Weekly Address, June 6, 2009

"Now, let’s start with the fact that even before the Affordable Care Act fully takes effect, about 85 percent of Americans already have health insurance — either through their job, or through Medicare, or through the individual market. So if you’re one of these folks, it’s reasonable that you might worry whether health care reform is going to create changes that are a problem for you — especially when you’re bombarded with all sorts of fear-mongering. So the first thing you need to know is this: If you already have health care, you don’t have to do anything." Remarks in Largo, Md., Sept. 26, 2013

Source: http://www.politifact.com/obama-like-health-care-keep/

In spite of the many lies told to American citizens, I remember Congress voting on this proposed law. A Democratic President and a majority in both the Senate and House of Representatives ensured that Obamacare became law.

Not one Republican voted in favor of the Affordable Health Care Act. The Republicans believed the law was seriously flawed and chose not to participate in finding and fixing the problems. The Republicans said the Democrats would ‘own’ Obamacare and Republicans didn’t want to have anything to do with it.

After Obamacare was enacted into law, the Republicans gained control of both houses. This was due, in part, to a majority of Americans opposing Obamacare at that time. Republicans sent one or more bill(s) abolishing Obamacare to President Obama for signature. He vetoed the bill(s) and Obamacare became entrenched in America.

Since then, the Republicans have been giving dire predictions that Obamacare subsidies are becoming too expensive and health insurance companies are leaving the program. They are saying that Obamacare is failing. They may be right about the huge federal subsidies because our national debt doubled during President Obama’s eight years in office. (a 10 trillion dollar increase)

It is helpful to remember that Republicans controlled both the House of Representatives and the Senate during at least four years of President Obama’s time in office. They controlled the purse strings and voted to give him everything he wanted.

Fast forward nine years after the passage of Obamacare. We have a Republican President and the Republicans control the Senate and House of Representatives. The first major legislative initiative considered by President Trump and the Republican-controlled House and Senate was to abolish Obamacare and create a better healthcare package.

Six months after President Trump took office, Obamacare has not been abolished and neither House of Representatives nor Senate Republicans can agree on the best way forward.

Meanwhile, the Democrats in the House of Representatives and the Senate are refusing to participate in this legislative process. They are furious that Republicans are trying to “abolish and replace” Obamacare and are united in their opposition to ending Obamacare.

One new problem the Republicans are facing is the fact that many lower income Americans now like Obamacare because of the huge Government subsidies they are receiving. A number of middle and upper income Americans today really hate Obamacare because their insurance premiums are continuing to rise amid really high deductibles. Who wins this contest? Watch the politicians count votes!

I’ve noticed that some Republican senators who voted to abolish Obamacare a few years ago are now refusing to vote to abolish that law. What happened? I think some of their constituents are reaping the benefits of subsidized health insurance and these senators are afraid they will lose votes if they vote to abolish Obamacare.

Members of both political parties have been, are now, and will be voting on healthcare issues to further their political careers. America needs politicians who vote for American citizens and our national interest; not a bunch of cowardly men and women trying to save their cushy jobs. It’s no wonder why the American people hold members of Congress in such low esteem.

Joe R. East, Jr.

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