Medicaid

Three Profiles In Courage: John McCain Of Arizona, Lisa Murkowski Of Alaska, Susan Collins Of Maine

It is appropriate to salute three Republican Senators who stopped the destruction of ObamaCare, due to their feeling that despite the shortcomings of the program, that to just repeal it and leave millions of Americans with no health coverage was intolerable.

Senator John McCain of Arizona, a true independent and maverick, has often exasperated many political observers, and this blogger was upset earlier last week when McCain voted to promote votes on various alternatives, including repeal without replacement, but then voted to kill the idea once there was the opportunity to do so.

We now learn that former Vice President Joe Biden, a good friend, and former Senator Joe Lieberman, the Vice Presidential running mate of Al Gore in 2000, contacted McCain and convinced him that this was the right thing to do.

This kind of bipartisanship is precisely what is needed, and is missing from today’s political scence.

The courage of the two women Senators, who could not have alone stopped the Republican plan to destroy ObamaCare, must also be acknowledged, and sadly, some misogyny was utilized against them by the right wing, but Senator Susan Collins of Maine and Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska showed how principled and decent they were, and deserve great credit.

Both Collins and Murkowksi are tough, and they are not intimidated, with Collins having always been independent oriented, and Murkowski losing the party primary in 2010, running as a write in Independent candidate, and winning over her Republican and Democratic opponents, and then winning in 2016.

The outrage that the Interior Secretary, Ryan Zinke, at Donald Trump’s orders, threatened Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, the other Alaska Senator, with cuts in funding for Alaska in the Department budget did not intimidate Murkowski, as she postponed committee hearings and votes in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which she heads. She knows how to play Hardball, and Trump has met his match in her, as well as Collins.

Disappointing, however, was the third woman Senator thought united with them, Senator Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, but caving in to pressure from Senator Mitch McConnell, the Senate Majority Leader, quite shocking since West Virginia has more people on Medicaid and in poverty than almost all states in America.

Republican Governors John Kasich, Brian Sandoval And Numerous Republican Senators Buck The Party Line On Medicaid, And Trump, Pence, And Republican Leadership Threaten Them!

Republican Party leadership, and President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are using heavy handed tactics to try to force recalcitrant Republicans in the US Senate to vote for a bill that undermines Medicaid dramatically, and ends ObamaCare, even without a replacement.

Up to 33 million people are being told that there is no concern as to what this would do to the health care system, not only to patients, but to hospitals and health professionals affected by these draconian cuts.

This is unconscionable, and will cause the Republicans to suffer at the polls in the midterm Congressional elections in 2018.

But Republican Governors John Kasich of Ohio and Brian Sandoval of Nevada are resisting this, as are Senators such as Rob Portman of Ohio, Dean Heller of Nevada, Susan Collins of Maine, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; Jeff Flake of Arizona and others.

Already, Trump is trying to encourage opponents in primaries against Senators Heller and Flake, the most endangered Republicans in Senate races in 2018.

Trump and Pence playing hardball will end up backfiring on the administration, as there is no morality or ethics in anyone backing the end of ObamaCare and gutting of Medicaid, and Americans are rising up in large number in opposition to this disgraceful action promoted by Trump, Pence, as well as Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell and others who have no concern for the lives and health of millions of Americans!

When Will Trump Supporters Finally Abandon Their “Hero”? When They Are Personally Affected By Trump And GOP Policies!

As we reach the six month mark of the Trump Presidency, we see Trump’s public opinion ratings between 36 and 40 percent, depending on the poll, and mid to high 50s diaapproval.

And yet, the one third of Americans who still support Trump seem unwilling to abandon their “hero”, even though he is doing great damage to the Presidency, and to domestic and foreign policy.

Thankfully, there is no major crisis that has arisen so far, although there are problems, such as North Korea in particular, which could erupt at any time.

But Trump has not had to deal with an economic collapse, as Barack Obama inherited from George W. Bush; or a terrorist attack such as George W. Bush had with September 11 in the first year; or any other major crisis such as John F. Kennedy and the building of the Berlin Wall in his first year.

Of course, the first year is only half over, and one can expect that there will be a crisis that will test Donald Trump sometime soon, a totally terrifying thought.

But the question remains, and to when will Trump supporters finally turn against Donald Trump?

One has to believe only when they are personally affected by Trump and Republican policies, such as the knocking of millions off ObamaCare and Medicaid, with no alternative, will they react.

Many people seem not to be noticing either how Trump is out to fill the government with Wall Street types, the so called “swamp” he said he would drain, but is not doing, and maybe there will eventually be a reaction to that.

The arrogance of the Trump family may also, finally, change people’s minds, as with the Donald Trump Jr and Jared Kushner Russian connection scandal revealed in recent days.

One would like to believe that when Trump supporters realize what a crooked and uncaring man Donald Trump is, and how it affects them personally, that they will rise in outrage, but then again, who knows?

There is the possibility that the Trump voters will never realize how they have been exploited, a sad sign of the lack of knowledge and understanding of what American government is supposed to be all about.

If so, the “experiment” in American democracy may be in trouble, and we may be seeing millions of clueless voters willing to accept authoritarianism as normal!

Mitch McConnell, Corrupt Senate Majority Leader, Who Has No Concern For His Kentucky Constituents

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is certainly a very skilled politician, but he is also extremely corrupt.

McConnell declared war on Barack Obama in 2009, making clear there would be no cooperation with the new President on anything, forcing the President to settle for ObamaCare, only accomplished by united Democratic support, rather than a public option or Medicare for all, which would have been far better a result.

McConnell refused to permit Obama to make a statement about Russian collusion being clearly a problem in 2016, and yet, McConnell knew it was going on, but was cooperating with Donald Trump, even though in many ways, he disliked the Trump behavior and tactics.

Then, his wife, Elaine Chao, former Labor Secretary under George W. Bush, was named Secretary of Transportation for President Trump.

Chao, as Labor Secretary, was very anti labor in policies, and now is working to undermine Amtrak, the only transportation system for many rural communities, the ones who voted for Donald Trump, but now are in danger of losing their link to the outside world by public transportation, helping to harm the rural economy even further.

And McConnell is trying to force through a complete end of ObamaCare, including Medicaid, which benefits so many of his rural white constituents in Kentucky. Fortunately, it seems likely his mission will fail, and he will have to deal with the Democrats on fixing ObamaCare.

McConnell has no principles, no morality, no ethics, and could not concern himself about the poor whites in his state, and this is outrageous and unconscionable.

He is just a power player with no heart, and is, therefore, clearly a very corrupt Majority Leader, who will go down in history in a very negative way, as having undermined the health and economic survival of those who stupidly voted for him six times for the US Senate!

After Seven Years, Republicans Seem Ready To Accept Reforms Of ObamaCare Through BiPartisan Deal With Democrats!

After seven years of constant and vehement opposition of Republicans to Barack Obama’s signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act of 2010, it now seems as if the Republican Party in Congress is about ready to “throw in the towel”, and accept the continuation of ObamaCare with reforms and changes brought about by bipartisan cooperation with Democrats.

The statement of Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader, conceding the likelihood of giving up the fight to obliterate ObamaCare, was a stunning moment of concession, and shows how the Republican Party is well aware of the impact of trying to end health care coverage for 20-30 million under ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion.

The fury of constituents at town halls is very clear, and is a sign that if enough reaction on any injustice can be promoted by those who want to prevent destructive action, it can actually lead to concessions.

But this also makes clear the total panic of the GOP about the upcoming midterm elections in 16 months, which could lead to a Democratic controlled House of Representatives.

There is even concern that the Republicans could lose the Senate, although that still seems a real long shot, as only 8 Republicans, compared to 25 Democrats, face election in 2018.

The only way possible for a Democratic controlled Senate in 2019-2020 would be if all 25 Democrats or their successors retained those seats, highly unlikely, and to win three of the eight GOP seats, but that would mean winning not only Dean Heller’s seat in Nevada and Jeff Flake’s seat in Arizona, but also Ted Cruz’s seat in Texas.

To kick the obnoxious, egotistical, and arrogant Ted Cruz out of the Senate would be a major coup, but to expect it to occur is highly doubtful at this point.

All of the Senate seats will be discussed at the proper time over the next 16 months on this blog, but right now, the emphasis must be on the gaining of the House of Representatives, by winning 24 or more seats, and immediately, the retention of ObamaCare, with necessary reforms!

Strong Likelihood That Three Republican Women Senators Will Block Repeal Of ObamaCare!

The Republican Party is fast learning of vast and vehement opposition by their constituents to the repeal of ObamaCare and the decimation of Hedicaid.

Ordinary citizens are organizing in a manner that stands out as undermining any attempt of Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, and other GOP leaders to destroy all of the good that has been done on health care under Barack Obama.

Americans, overwhelmingly, want Preexisting Conditions to remain being covered, and for no lifetime cap on benefits to be continued, as it benefits the millions of Americans who are disabled, elderly, sick, and poor.

There may have been doubt about ObamaCare due to racism, but now many of those who said they were opposed, have come to realize that the Affordable Care Act, the official name for ObamaCare, a term devised by obstructionist Republicans, actually has worked very well for 20-30 million Americans, including the expansion of Medicaid.

So it now seems that there is a strong likelihood that three Republican women Senator, none of whom face election to their seats until 2020, will save the day, and prevent repeal of ObamaCare.

These three women Senators are considered moderates, and represent poor states, which also have major Opioid addiction troubles, which would also be mostly thrown to the side by cuts in the health Care plan, as devised by the Republicans.

Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia are leagued in their recognition of the issues of how many of their constituents would be harmed if the repeal of ObamaCare goes through.

Expect all three to prevent action, and possibly some male Republican Senators too, including Rob Portman of Ohio, Dean Heller of Nevada, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Jeff Flake of Arizona and others, but the three women alone will be enough to derail the despicable legislation.

It would also be nice if the two other Republican women Senators—Joni Ernst of Iowa and Deb Fischer of Nebraska–two other poor states in the Great Plains-Midwest region, were to do the right thing, and if that happened, we would have all 21 women Senators, the 5 Republicans and 16 Democrats united together on a cause worth being unified around.

But that is unlikely to happen, but Collins, Murkowski, and Capito are likely to kill the bill without any help from any other Republican Senators, and if so, they will be applauded for their courage, ethics, and compassion for their constituents!

Kentucky: Heavily Poor White State With Two Senators Who Wish To Gut Medicaid And Obamacare, Which Benefits Their Struggling Constituents!

Kentucky is an extremely poor state, especially in the eastern Appalachia counties, heavily poor whites, who have high levels of preexisting health problems, and depend on Medicaid and ObaamCare, and are now scared to death that they will lose their lifeline, and all because of the mean spirit, lack of empathy and compassion, and selfishness, of the Republican Party.

Kentucky has 60 percent of people in Appalachia on disability benefits, and overall one third of its people are dependent on government programs.

The Opioid crisis also affects Kentuckians at very high rates, due to depression over horrible job prospects, and high levels of unemployment, caused to be greater by the Great Recession, provoked by Republicans and their lack of concern about regulation of banks and Wall Street before 2008, and now ready again to make the same mistakes and repeal the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 to prevent such future economic disasters.

And in the midst of this issue of struggling constituents, Kentucky has two Republican Senators who do not give a damn about their own population.

Rand Paul, with his crazy libertarian ideas, wants to destroy ObamaCare and gut Medicaid, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is even more the villain, as he undermines his own state, having utilized racism and misogyny to keep his Senate seat and the power of the Majority Leader, and to destroy everything Barack Obama did, which benefited Kentuckians and the nation.

How much more evil could two men be, but also, how ignorant a population, that they would be manipulated and tricked into supporting the reelection of, arguably, the worst two Senators combined in any state of the Union?

The Total Loss Of Humanity, Compassion, And Decency In The Republican Party Unprecedented In Modern American History!

So here we are, a few days away from a Senate vote on the most atrocious possible bill ever devised on health care!

22 million people will be knocked off health care over the next decade, the vast majority in 2018.

Medicaid will be decimated; the disabled will be repudiated, as if they do not have a right to exist; the elderly in nursing homes will lose Medicaid coverage; many rural hospitals will be shut down; millions upon millions of Americans with preexisting conditions will no longer have health care; prescription medications will no longer be covered at a reasonable rate; the poor in Appalachia, the Rust Belt, and in the cities of America will only have inadequate emergency room care, if the hospital near them stays open.

All the major medical associations have come out against the legislation, which it seems clear, will cause thousands upon thousands of premature deaths of people at all ages and racial and ethnic backgrounds.

And why? So that the top one percent can get a massive tax cut that they do not need, and in most cases, have not asked for!

This is greed and selfishness beyond redemption!

It is a total loss of humanity, compassion, and decency by the Republican Party, unprecedented in modern American history!

There is absolutely no justification for this outrage, and is an attack on life, by a so called “pro life” party, that insists that every fetus must be taken to term and born; but once born, if not healthy or if not wealthy, to hell with you, and you are on your own!

If there is karma, then one can say that every single Republican who votes in favor of this obscene legislation will pay a price in the future as one does not tolerate evil without retribution!

So Senators in the Republican Party, think twice and have a conscience before you sign onto such evil, disgraceful legislation, a true crime against humanity!

Senate Republican Health Care Bill Will NOT Reach 50 Votes, As Now Stands!

The newly veiled Senate Republican Health Care legislation, created behind closed doors in great secrecy, is finally unveiled, and it is a total disaster for the poor, disabled, and elderly, and promotes the end of Medicaid, which 20 percent of the nation relies on, including 60 percent in nursing homes, and the millions of disabled people.

It undermines health care for the opioid crisis raging across America, and anyone with pre-existing conditions will no longer be protected.

It is a certainty that tens of thousands of Americans are being given a death warrant by the Republican Party, and its hard hearted, nasty, mean spirited membership, which is more concerned about giving massive tax cuts to the top one percent who do not need it, and have not asked for it, but will, of course, accept what is offered, as after all, does one reject candy offered?

But it is also important to note that this legislation will fall, as there is no way imaginable that 50 Senators out of 52 will support it.

Dean Heller of Nevada is the most endangered Republican Senator in 2018, and has said he cannot support it, and Nevada is one of the states that has more on Medicaid than many other states.

Susan Collins of Maine is, arguably, the most moderate Republican, and has made clear she cannot vote for legislation that decimates Medicaid.

The same can be said for Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Shelly Moore Capito of West Virginia, both states having loads of poor, struggling whites and others, who depend on Medicaid.

Both Collins and Murkowksi also defend Planned Parenthood, which is due to be cut from any government aid under the legislation.

Rob Portman of Ohio is also concerned about the opioid crisis hitting his state.

Jeff Flake of Arizona is the second most endangered Republican Senator coming up for re-election in 2018, so doubtful about his support for the legislation, as well.

Then, there are others who will not support the bill, as it is not harsh enough, imagine that–including Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah, and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin.

And one wonders whether John McCain of Arizona, who has long had a “moderate” image, can actually vote for this legislation.

Also, all major medical associations have condemned the legislation as unacceptable, having a disastrous effect on rural areas, and on the idea that health care should be available for all Americans.

So, as of now, it is highly unlikely that the Senate Health Care bill will reach 50 votes!

Donald Trump’s War On The Poor And Disabled Unprecedented In Modern American History!

Donald Trump clearly has no conscience, as he is moving ahead in a war on the poor and disabled, unprecedented in American history.

The Native Americans of such areas as the Pine Ridge Sioux Reservation of South Dakota; the poverty stricken areas of the major cities; the white working class of states such as West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio and Pennsylvania that is in desperation due to the decline of coal mining; the rural Southern and Midwest towns that have seen the close of factories and decline of agricultural prosperity; and the growing number of elderly and disabled people of all ages, all of which count on such government programs as Medicaid, Food Stamps, and Supplemental Security Income, now face massive cuts in programs, which these groups cannot afford to lose.

They will be unable to have proper nutrition; will be unable to afford visits to doctors or hospitals except in dire emergencies; and will face living out of cars or in homeless shelters; and doing without basic needs met, including dental care, winter heating and summer air conditioning, and ability to plan to send their children to college. They will have no opportunity to plan for a retirement when they are no longer able to work, particularly those with physical jobs, which will render them in a dire financial position in their twilight years.

But to Donald Trump, what really matters is not these “disposable” people, many of whom will most certainly die before their time due to neglect, but rather the additional wealth that will be gained by the elite wealthy from massive tax cuts at the expense of their fellow Americans, and will cause the moral and ethical decline of American society, as the evil aspects of capitalism will run rampant. Excessive greed and emphasis on profits is the priority over basic humanity!