As the clock ticks rapidly toward a vote on the Senate health care reform bill, (Yes, that’s right, it’s no repeal, it’s a reform), another Senator has jumped into the No vote column, Susan Collins (R-ME). The real concern is that the general public has no idea about several issues regarding the bill and why some Republicans do not support it.
Some are firm in what they refuse to vote for. Others are wavering.
Let’s examine who the fairly certain No voters are, their most recent sentiments regarding the Senate draft of the bill, and what they would desire to happen before changing their vote. Also, let’s consider how the House bill has been expanded and could potentially include in the Senate version a definition of who is “legal” and living in the United States.
Because of the backlash that would inevitably result, the population at large has been kept in the dark about what it now really means to be “illegally residing” here. That definition has narrowed significantly.
Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) has clearly stated that he will not vote for any version of a Senate proposal unless there is an opt-out capacity for both states and individuals. In other words, he feels that the federal government should not make health care a forced mandate on anyone, state or person.
With an opt-out no-penalty provision, many states and persons would do so, likely to the point of imploding the federal system. Lee stands strong in his position. It is highly unlikely that the Senate would include such a provision in the bill, so we can count on Mike Lee’s vote to be, NAY.
Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) has repeatedly stated that he will not vote for the Senate proposal unless it puts back the dollars gutted from Medicaid. He represents the state of Nevada, where many people who live at or under the poverty level reside.
He feels the House bill and Senate draft have gone too far to hurt poor families – especially the working poor families who cannot afford health insurance. Any change away from aiding these individuals with subsidies and/or replacing the Medicaid funding would cause him to vote no.
The Democrats also are in his camp. At this point, there could be some compromise in the Senate to replace some of the Medicare cuts, but not likely all of them. It was one of the few differentials from Obamacare, so adding the cuts back would push the plan back toward Obamacare. This is not likely.
Heller’s vote will be a NAY. This will happen in spite of a pro-Trump sponsored PAC, to run a million dollars worth of ads against Heller in his own home state, almost as a threat. He is up for re-election in 2018 in a close race against a Democrat. I find it disgusting to have one’s own party run an ad against him to bully him into a vote that is against his principles and against what his constituents want.
Ted Cruz (R-TX) has made a list of some things that would have to change in the current proposal in order for his vote to change to a yes vote. Cruz and some others who were on the committee to design the new draft were quite angry that they were shut out from actually seeing the draft by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Since Cruz was not allowed to provide any input into the draft until after it was released late last week, he feels that the pressure of so little time to redesign it properly is not fair to the public. He will likely vote NAY on this bill. Yesterday, when a volunteer called his office, she was told that Cruz would not vote for any version short of a full repeal of Obamacare.
Rand Paul (R-KY) stated that the current draft is basically 90 percent Obamacare. He would like to see it drop to 10 percent or even 20 percent Obamacare before he would consider voting yes. Some of his supporters are frustrated that Rand is not calling for a full repeal of Obamacare, but at this late stage, that is not reasonable. It should have been done in January when it was promised by Donald Trump.
Now, Rand Paul is calling for some extreme measures in order to remove another 70 percent of existing law. He wants portability and much more competition. In a recent interview, as an ophthalmologist, he questioned – how is it possible for Lasik surgery to have dropped over 75 percent in costs over the last 15 years, and for contact lens prices to have plummeted, in spite of advanced technology on both fronts? Yet in the medical field, the cost of procedures continues to skyrocket. It’s because the consumer doesn’t set medical prices through competition; the medical field does it. It’s a change he wants to see.
We can count on a NAY vote from Rand Paul.
Susan Collins has just joined the opposition for the same reasons as Dean Heller. Her home state of Maine has many people on Medicaid who would suffer if they lose their coverage. She is voting no on the current draft because it is important to her that she represents her constituents more than sticking with her party.
Collins will vote NAY because all those Medicaid dollars will not be replaced and she will not be convinced otherwise without that stipulation.
Ron Johnson (R-WI) has stated that he is voting no on this version of the bill because he believes the proponents of the bill are not being honest about premium costs coming down. He feels that they will continue to skyrocket and that the Republicans will be blamed for it because they will have replaced Obamacare with this new version. It is highly likely that he will vote NAY. He also feels that the bill was rushed through the Senate to a vote.
So there are six Republicans standing strong against the revised version of Obamacare. Only three NAY votes are needed to trash the whole thing. Yes, it’s a revision, not a repeal.
It also expands the scope of who is covered, because some illegal aliens who came into this country either by entering without documentation and cannot prove that they belong here in any manner, or those who stayed beyond an expired visa, are now included in health care reform under certain conditions.
DACA, the unconstitutional Dreamers ACT signed into law via an Executive Order by Obama and signed again by Trump is an unconstitutional law that not only allows certain people who entered the country illegally to stay legally, but to give them full access to health care, among other things.
Temporary “visitors” who have been here as long as 15 or more years, abusing their temporary status, also qualify. The law has been twisted, taken out of context, and grasped by liberal interpretation to allow hundreds of thousands of people who illegally entered the country or stayed beyond expiration dates to qualify for tax funded health care.
It’s still in the bill. It’s broader than Obamacare. Who is the liberal party?
Oh, and by the way, Planned Parenthood isn’t defunded either. It is supposed to be defunded for a year under the original House version. But it is still funded in the budget for this year. Any temporary defunding is in place until a temporary one year period beginning in 2019.
Unborn children will continue to die until then with tax funding because your President did not remove funding for Planned Parenthood from this year’s budget.
Janice Barlow is a true crime author. Her third book is set for release on July 10th – a fiction story about a greyhound.