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Monday, November 18, 2013

Republicans Howling About Repeal Are About To Run Over A Cliff

Paul Waldman points out today at The American Prospect that in just six weeks, on January 1, millions of Americans are going to be living in a new healthcare reality. Republicans crowing about the fraction of folks on the private insurance market who think they are happy with junk insurance plans so bad they are now illegal will suddenly be proposing "Repeal" of benefits that millions upon millions of Americans will be experiencing first hand. He writes:
  • Millions of people will begin getting coverage through Medicaid. Repeal would mean kicking these people off their insurance.
  • Millions of people will begin getting subsidies to pay for private insurance. Repeal would mean taking away their subsidies, making it unaffordable for them to get insurance.
  • Denials for pre-existing conditions will be officially over. Repeal would mean that once again, insurers could deny people coverage if they've ever been sick.
  • Annual limits on coverage will be outlawed. Repeal would mean that people will once again start being forced to pay huge medical bills, in many cases forcing them into bankruptcy, if they have a serious illness or accident.
Republican ecstasies over the troubled rollout have a curiously manic quality. Bludgeoned by the disastrous Government Shutdown they seem to have experienced the attentional turn back to Obamacare as an unexpected salvation. In their almost spastically ecstatic embrace of this turn of events they have been ratcheting up expectations of total debacle while the Administration has been lowering expectations and biding their time. Republicans are where they are because they have nowhere else to go. The complicity of mainstream media in whomping up the "Game Over" narrative for the Obama Administration as well as their readiness to focus on a small percentage of misinformed citizens on the private insurance market rather than the millions who are on the verge of historically unprecedented healthcare benefits reveals a preference for gossip over substance that should surprise and please no-one -- including the present Republican beneficiaries of this nonsense, since the dramatic narratives all change to their catastrophic cost on January 1st. Get ready for the Obama Comeback and ACA Miracle and Democratic House Prospects Rise stories to usher in the new year.

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