House GOP quietly passes bill to expand coverage choices under ObamaCare

posted at 11:21 am on April 7, 2014 by Allahpundit

Well, they tried to do it quietly. It didn’t work out.

dr

Originally, O-Care placed caps on deductibles in plans offered by small businesses, which meant less flexibility for employers in what they could offer their workers. That’s bad news for young and healthy employees who don’t visit the doctor much and would have preferred a plan with low premiums and a higher deductible. It’s also bad news for people who use health savings accounts to make high deductibles more affordable. So, last week, the House leadership agreed to insert a provision in the “doc fix” bill (the one that “passed” via a rigged, bogus voice vote) to eliminate the cap. Business wanted it, Democrats wanted it, the Republican leadership wanted it — but did the House GOP rank and file want it?

Because the vote was so opaque and tainted, we’ll never know.

“Maybe you say it helps (Obamacare), but it really helps the small businessman,” said Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., one of several physician-lawmakers among Republicans and an advocate of repeal…

It is unclear how many members of the House rank and file knew of it because the legislation was passed by a highly unusual voice vote without debate…

Asked if the legislation strengthened the law, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said, “I would hope so. I believe that” it does. He added, “So there are changes being made. But the Republicans have to get over if they hate ‘Obamacare’ and are going to repeal it,” he added.

Rory Cooper, a spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said, “This is another in a series of changes to Obamacare that the House has supported to help save Americans from being harmed by the law, and we’re glad to see the President signed it into law.” Cantor was involved in negotiations on the legislation, which were overseen by Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and Reid.

Lifting the cap is the first time the GOP’s cooperated with Democrats to make it easier for people to get coverage under O-Care. Which raises anew a question the party will be wrestling with until January 2017 (at least): If repeal is momentarily impossible, should Republicans work to improve the law to lighten the burden on Americans (“bide your time”) or should they demand that O-Care be implemented exactly as it was passed so that Americans can render a fully informed verdict on Democratic-led health care (“let it burn”)? Here’s Joel Pollak on the bide-your-time approach in October of last year, after the shutdown:

The problem is that a member of Congress has to face his or her constituents and explain what he or she is doing to help them–not in 2017, when the only realistic possibility for repealing Obamacare will arise, but today. It would be unacceptable for Rubio or Cruz to tell their constituents that the voters have to be taught a lesson. So they have to take some kind of action to “fix” Obamacare, while still pressing for its repeal.

And here’s DrewM in the “let it burn” camp, writing today about the GOP’s new O-Care fix:

The whole idea behind not “fixing” ObamaCare is that in order to do the heavy lifting of repealing it you need as many people angry about it as possible. If you start pealing off repeal supporters, you’re helping eliminate pressure to actually repeal the damn thing. But let’s be honest, “repeal” is just some BS Republicans tell people to win their votes. When push comes to shove, they will tinker with it and call it a day.

The risk in the “bide your time” approach is that the more comfortable you make O-Care for Americans, the harder it is to get people excited about repeal later. The risk in “let it burn” is that the more obstructionist you are, the easier you make it for Democrats to convince people that O-Care would be working just fine if not for Republicans blocking the necessary repairs. Which strategy is better? Back in October, defending the “defund” effort that led to the shutdown, Ted Cruz rejected the “let it burn” crowd’s proposal to get out of the way and let ObamaCare take effect in full, knowing that Republicans would only benefit from the backlash. “Basically inflict a bunch of harm on the American people and hope we benefit politically from it, what a terrible cynical approach,” said Cruz. “I’m not interested in seeing the American people suffer just because my party might benefit politically if they blame the Democrats for the foolish policies that have been imposed.” Here we are six months later and the law’s a political reality. Does that principle — ease the people’s suffering as much as you can — still hold or has the urgency to stop the law now that it’s taken root changed such that the GOP should oppose stabilizing “improvements” at all cost?


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Wow, what’s it take to get banned around here nowadays.

Someone owes SWalker an apology.

Midas on April 7, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Libs seem to be given more slack.

bw222 on April 7, 2014 at 10:53 PM

Yawn, is anybody really surprised? The GOP Congressional leadership is just worthless thrash.

McConnell, Boehner & Co are all patethically useless.

Norwegian on April 7, 2014 at 11:20 PM

I have gotten so sick of the republicans caving to the democrats. It’s like they are flipping us all the bird. Well Frack You, idiots! You will never get any of my support. Our country is going to hell faster every day!

BoomJunkie on April 7, 2014 at 11:26 PM

We are pretty much a one part system. The Republicans are just playing us. They could careless about fiscal responsibility. There is no Small government party. It’s pass time to dump the Republican party. How are they any different from the Dem?

Kjeil on April 8, 2014 at 12:29 AM

We are pretty much a one part system. The Republicans are just playing us. They could careless about fiscal responsibility. There is no Small government party. It’s pass time to dump the Republican party. How are they any different from the Dem?
Kjeil on April 8, 2014 at 12:29 AM

Remember, all this wonderful crap sandwich fixes are a result of the voice vote that guys like Louie Gohmert were bringing to our attention. I was reading an article by Irving Kristol the other day and it struck me that these Neocons are as devious and conniving as these radical libs are under Saul Alinsky. The Kristolites believe that they are better suited to manage our lives through Government and through wars then the old liberal base in the DNC. They actually think they can outlib the left

Brock Robamney on April 8, 2014 at 6:31 AM

Just as Ronaldus Magnus said those 39 years ago, it is time to “let them go their way”.

My take.

kingsjester on April 8, 2014 at 7:23 AM

Frankly, it’s rich that Cruz, the man who was the biggest supporter of wrecking the government from beginning to end, now says that his own method was “a terribly cynical approach.” I wonder if a little self-awareness is creeping into his Teahadi skull.

The next thing to creep into there should be .38 caliber.

BrianJ on April 7, 2014 at 8:21 PM

de·ranged
diˈrānjd/Submit
adjective
adjective: deranged

1.mad; insane.
“a deranged gunman”
synonyms: insane, mad, disturbed, unbalanced, unhinged, unstable, irrational; More
antonyms: rational

lynncgb on April 8, 2014 at 8:57 AM

You guys actually seem to believe that the debt load is a serious danger to the US economy right now, even though not even the smallest forecasted effects of this manufactured debt crisis have ever become reality.

everdiso on April 7, 2014 at 2:09 PM

LOL. I see that English isn’t your thing. The forecasted effects of this debt (and money printing) have ALWAYS become reality. In the present case they haven’t YET become reality. But they will. As they ALWAYS HAVE.

Go back and finish elementary school, moron. Your language skills are at about Barky-level. At least, Barky has an excuse, as he grew up in Jakarta with Bahasa in addition to being an 84 IQ half-wit.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 8, 2014 at 10:54 AM

You guys actually seem to believe that the debt load is a serious danger to the US economy right now, even though not even the smallest forecasted effects of this manufactured debt crisis have ever become reality.
everdiso on April 7, 2014 at 2:09 PM

Didn’t Obozo lash out at Bush for running the debt to 9 trillion? So now that the debt is 17 trillion under President Palpatine it is no longer a concern????

Brock Robamney on April 8, 2014 at 11:43 AM

The language was precise and perfect, and more importantly, was entirely accurate, which is why you could only respond with deflections and insults.

Go on and show here that even one of the debt-crisis predictions has come true. Even one. Inflation, interest rates, investments, savings, sell offs – show me one example of the debt crisis chicken littles being proven right on anything.

With the massive debt load increase of the last decade, it should be easy for you to show your work.

But i’m guessing you’ll use the old doomsday diversion: “it hasn’t happened YET….but just you wait, it’s JUST AROUND THE CORNER!!! After re-reading the tea leaves, the end of the world is NEXT month, not this month. My bad! In the meantine, keep listening to me and giving me money!”

Stop being suckers already.

everdiso on April 8, 2014 at 11:44 AM

You are, simply put, a lying leftist troll. Not a US citizen and not covered under 0Care. No one gives a rats ass what your opinion on anything is. They just enjoy your humiliation. That’s all.

Bmore on April 8, 2014 at 12:22 PM

The language was precise and perfect,

Trying to defend your idiocy with redundancy, now. Now, that’s perfect.

and more importantly, was entirely accurate,

“entirely”? More redundancy … LOL.

which is why you could only respond with deflections and insults.

I directly addressed your poorly-phrased claim. I didn’t expect you to understand that, though. I was just doing it for kicks.

Go on and show here that even one of the debt-crisis predictions has come true. Even one. Inflation, interest rates, investments, savings, sell offs – show me one example of the debt crisis chicken littles being proven right on anything.

I already said that these effects WILL come to be. How stupid are you? Really.

With the massive debt load increase of the last decade, it should be easy for you to show your work.

But i’m guessing you’ll use the old doomsday diversion: “it hasn’t happened YET….but just you wait, it’s JUST AROUND THE CORNER!!! After re-reading the tea leaves, the end of the world is NEXT month, not this month. My bad! In the meantine, keep listening to me and giving me money!”

Stop being suckers already.

everdiso on April 8, 2014 at 11:44 AM

Learn a little bit of history, if you’re able. Sadly, though, with your inability to understand basic English I think that this is a task quite beyond you. I’ll give you a start, though: Name one time in history when gigantic debt and rampant money-printing did NOT lead to all the effects that precede the death of a currency. Just one example would be good enough. I’m not even asking you to find a corresponding case of 8% deficit spending annually to claim 2% “growth” …

Also, tell me what the service on our national debt will be when interest rates return to the historical mean (even giving you the benefit of not having to contemplate interest rates going beyond that). Take a guess for me and write it down. Look up the historical mean interet rates – along with the historical mean debt maturity distribution for the feral government – and go fetch me a pretty number.

LOL. Maybe you should start telling people that you grew up in Jakarta? Give yourself a little intellectual leeway, at least.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on April 8, 2014 at 12:29 PM

Okay, genius… if the budget is never balanced, and our debt keeps climbing, eventually interest paid on the national debt will take up 100% of the revenue… and then what? No credit institution I know will let you pay the interest on your credit card with the same credit card. Unless we stop the deficit spending – not just reduce it, STOP it – we’re headed for default. And if you just print money to throw at it, we’re headed for hyperinflation. Look at Zimbabwe. Look at Germany just before the Nazis came to power. You think $4-per-gallon gas is bad, wait until it’s $4-million-per-gallon.

TMOverbeck on April 9, 2014 at 12:21 AM

We are pretty much a one part system. The Republicans are just playing us. They could careless about fiscal responsibility. There is no Small government party. It’s pass time to dump the Republican party. How are they any different from the Dem?
Kjeil on April 8, 2014 at 12:29 AM

Although I’d love to see a new major political party, let’s face it… unless there’s a mass movement (as in millions) of voters from the GOP to the Whatever Party, those who depart will be shamed into crawling back to the GOP because “OMG you’re splitting the opposition! You’ll guarantee Democrat dominance for decades!”

The only way I’ll know there’s a serious shift to a new political party is when a good number of big-money donors decide to cut off their donations to the GOP and funnel them to the new party instead. The GOP establishment isn’t going to change a damn thing as long as they know they have their loyal sugar daddies.

TMOverbeck on April 9, 2014 at 12:32 AM

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