No, it’s not time for the GOP to embrace single-payer

He claims “the people who elected Trump” would support such a plan, then offers a caricature of those people that could have come straight from the New York Times editorial board: “They weren’t right-wing ideologues. They were people who had lost or who feared they’d lose their jobs. Many were but a few steps away from the diseases of despair, social isolation, drug and alcohol poisonings and suicide that Anne Case and her husband, Nobel laureate Sir Angus Deaton, tell us have lowered the life expectancy of white Americans.”

It will no doubt come as a surprise to the tens of millions of middle-class Republican voters who supported Trump that “many” of them “were but a few steps away” from “diseases of despair” like suicide and heroin addiction.

Trump did attract crucial support in parts of the Midwest and Appalachia where the manufacturing economy has been hollowed out and communities have been ravaged by drug abuse and suicide. But the relatively small numbers of rural and suburban voters that helped swing certain counties in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin for Trump hardly make up a powerful political constituency, especially when it comes to something as big and important as health care.

The fact is, Trump’s coalition was made up largely of regular old Republicans, the same voters who have been sending lawmakers to Washington for seven years on promises to repeal and replace Obamacare. The defeat of RyanCare exposed huge problems with GOP House leadership’s grasp of the political moment and what’s expected of them, but it didn’t redraw the national political map.