Entitlement mentality hurts chance for reform
Health insurance entitlements have become the new third rail of politics. Many members of Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, are so worried about alienating millions of voters that they are unwilling to tinker with the massive government takeover of health insurance — even if they might improve the system.
President Donald Trump is renewing his campaign to repeal the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as Obamacare. He promises something better will be enacted in its place.
Clearly, Obamacare is flawed deeply. It has driven up health insurance costs for millions of Americans. It has restricted or even eliminating insurance options for many.
Some Democrat leaders insist the solution to that is for government to establish a “Medicare for all” system. It would virtually ban any private insurance and, beyond any reasonable doubt, would make the health care mess worse.
Many in Congress do not want to even consider Trump’s plan. Democrats want more government control, not less.
Republicans fear their opponents will accuse them of attempting to roll back Obamacare’s expansion of the Medicaid system. Under that plan, about 14 million Americans who previously did not qualify have been enrolled in Medicaid. About three-fourths of the states participate in expanded Medicaid, which is funded partially by the states. Medicaid and the related Children’s Health Insurance Program provide coverage to about 75.5 million Americans. The system –including the expansion — has become an entitlement.
Another consideration is the claim by liberals that Republicans are out to make it difficult or impossible for those with pre-existing health conditions to get affordable insurance. By some estimates, about half the people in the country have pre-existing conditions, though many have little or no effect on insurance availability.
It all comes down to liberals attempting to convince voters any adjustments will be harmful to their health insurance.
But no one outside the White House knows precisely what the president proposes to install in place of Obamacare. Does refusing to even consider it make any sense? Of course not.