Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Bipartisanship: Is He Crazy?

As mentioned on this blog, RinoCare was doomed to failure because it was released as a liberal-compromise bill where (a) leverage was not established by leading with a conservative offer and (b) there were no liberals to compromise with. They all voted no. They didn't care what was in the bill. They were going to vote no to anything the Republicans put forth.

As this whole thing settles it increasingly appears that Trump is not leading the issue well. Why was he so supportive of the bill? Some hoped it was a political coup to oust the traitorous Ryan. Yet Trump is now defending Ryan. What should happen seems obvious: pass the conservative legislation. In fact one Alabama Congressman has proposed a one-sentence bill to do just that. Instead, Trump is now suggesting that the answer is bipartisanship. Is he out of his mind? They already proposed a very liberal-friendly compromise bill and got zero votes for. He has Republican majorities in both houses and the answer is bipartisanship? Let's see how much the liberals like it, keeping in mind that the more they support it the worse it probably is.

From NPR's article Reality Check On Trump Calling For Bipartisanship On Health Care:
The fallout from Friday's Republican health care bill collapse is still trying to be understood.
That's what passes for an opener when you write in the politics section of a left-wing news org. An ability to even open with a coherent sentence is not so important as being a mindless ideologue. The fallout is trying to be understood? Like an angsty teenager?
Right after the bill was pulled, President Trump teased that he wanted to work with Democrats and believed a bipartisan bill would be possible. But it wasn't clear if that was just talk. On Tuesday night, he may have taken the first step to trying to reach across the aisle. "I know that we're all going to make a deal on health care, that's such an easy one," Trump told a bipartisan group of senators gathered at the White House. "I have no doubt that's going to happen very quickly."

Speed is relative. The Trump-Paul Ryan health care bill was fast-tracked and collapsed in 17 days. It took President Obama more than a year to pass the Affordable Care Act, with more members of his own party in the Senate than Republicans have now.
Obama didn't get his bill passed with bipartisanship. Not one Republican voted for it. He had more senators and, most importantly, they passed it in an overnight session on Christmas Eve when most had gone home for Christmas. The lesson is don't rely on bipartisanship, and don't play fair!
It was a staple of every Tea Party rally through that election cycle, so it is unlikely the GOP base shrugs its collective shoulders and moves on the way Trump promised to do Thursday and Friday — and wait for Obamacare to "explode."

Waiting for the law to fall apart puts Republicans in a terrible bind. Trump could get it left, right and center. If the Trump administration doesn't work as hard as it can to implement and administer the law, and you start seeing reporting from unnamed career officials verifying that, it very well could mean the Trump administration is blamed for harming real people's lives.

That would enrage not just Democrats, but independents and some Republicans.
Hey it's a clue. They're advising Trump shouldn't just let Obamacare die under it's own weight, which is a strong hint that he should. Also note that he might be blamed for harming "real people's lives." So they're willing to actually admit that the core of Obama's legacy is a pile of garbage just so long as they can blame it on Trump. Remember the foremost objective of the left is to weaken Trump at all costs, even if they have to sacrifice some of their own to do so.

Next up is the Washington Post with Trump says coming up with a bipartisan health-care bill will be ‘so easy.’ It won’t be. At least we can agree on the title.
If Trump does make a real effort to come up with bipartisan legislation, it would have to look very different from the Paul D. Ryan-designed American Health Care Act to stand any chance of passing. And is Trump really likely to move that far away from what congressional leaders in his own party want?
The bi-partisan bill would have to look very different from RinoCare. That's funny, because the whole problem with RinoCare was that it looked a lot like Obamacare. So are they saying the replacement shouldn't look anything like Obamacare? Just what are they advocating for here?
It’s hard to say what Trump’s endgame is here. It’s possible he could come up with a plan that satisfies moderates in both parties, even enough to pass a bill. That would be a big step forward for a president who has found it difficult to work with Congress so far — and has an outright hostile relationship with Democrats.
A hostile relationship with Democrats who have been calling him Hitler and worse for over a year and are calling for his impeachment because of a fake Russia narrative -- go figure. But the point is valid. There is no way Trump can get a single Democrat vote out of them with anything short of single-payer healthcare.

Time ran with the headline President Trump Wants Democrats Help With Health Reform.
Schumer said Sunday that Trump must be willing to drop attempts to repeal his predecessor's signature achievement, warning that Trump was destined to "lose again" on other parts of his agenda if he remained beholden to conservative Republicans.
Well there you go. The only way to get Democrat votes will be to continue the Democrat policies untouched. But that's no surprise. The Republicans already offered Repeal In Name Only and the Democrats balked. They won't support anything even nominally in the vein of repeal. Only if Trump reneges on major campaign promise will these guys come to the table. And he expects votes from them? And spare us on the threats that they won't support the other parts of Trump's agenda if they can't agree on healthcare. They aren't going to support anything he does ever! Look at how they're trying to block Gorsuch, the same guy the Democrats unanimously (including Schumer himself, and Obama, Clinton & Biden) approved to the federal circuit a decade or so ago. They will obstruct everything Trump tries to do no matter what it is.

The Tribune ran with Bipartisan health care plan could be road to redemption for Trump, the last article we'll look at and also the stupidest.
In an ideal world, Donald Trump would realize that Republicans did him a favor by failing to pass that health care bill.
Yeah and in an ideal world Democrats would realize Ryan did them a favor by offering up the most liberal-friendly deal they're going to get with both houses held by Republicans.
No president in modern history is more suited to bring the parties together than he, a political neophyte who fits into neither party's mold and who has nothing to lose by trying on both suits and figuring out which one fits.
Sure if the media wasn't running 24/7 hit pieces on Trump. There's no way anyone could bring unity in this hysterical environment. If half the public didn't think he was a treasonous Russian puppet then I would agree with her assessment: he is the most qualified for the task.
The smart thing to do would be to try to recruit the powerless Democrats and make them allies. If you really think about it, many Trump voters want the same things in a health care bill that the Democrats are pushing for. But they would never admit having anything in common with the party of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.
The smart thing is to recruit powerless Democrats who despise him as allies? Wow. And no, I know you live in a bubble, but I promise you we don't want the same things the Democrats are pushing for. They want maximum government involvement in healthcare. We want minimal. We want the exact opposite of what you want. I suppose we'd agree that we want cheaper healthcare that isn't tied to employment. That sounds like a place for common ground. But the high costs and employment dependency were caused by government interference in the first place, and only exacerbated by Obamacare. They insist on more of the poison that has made us sick.
If Trump invited Democrats to the table along with most Republicans, he could basically sidestep the ultra-conservative Freedom Caucus, which will only be happy if health care is offered in a free marketplace with no public financial assistance.
It sounds so easy. Except that Schmuck Schumer already told us that to accept the invitation to the table means not repealing Obamacare. So they're going to lose a lot more Republicans than just the Freedom Caucus. The article concludes:
In order to step up and be a great leader, Trump would have to put his pride aside. He would have to acknowledge his unpopularity and embrace it.

The American people might never forget the bigotry that he has helped to cultivate in our country. But if he came through for us and fixed the health care system, we could move past the hatred.
"Trump needs to unite the country by putting aside his pride and embrace his unpopularity and damn I've tried to hold back but he and his supporters are just nothing but hateful bigots." This is how they call for unity!

Frankly, the more I see of the healthcare debacle the less I give a shit about it. We aren't going to get the government out of healthcare, and we aren't going to get single-payer socialism with Republicans in charge. We're stuck in some sort of pareto minimum at the intersection of corporate charitibility and government efficiency. In the big picture this is a disaster that probably can't be saved. Healthcare costs in the US are nearing $10,000 dollars per person per year, or $40,000 a year for a family of four. The average tells a different story than the median here, but from the perspective of funding the average is what's important. The problem is the cost. It doesn't matter how you shuffle it around. There aren't enough billionaires to pay for it. And we're entering into a very perverse system where the only people who can afford healthcare are the very rich or the poor who are getting it for free. The people actually paying for it, the middle class families, have such steep premiums and deductibles that they are, in practicality, the sector of society without healthcare. How long can it last that the people paying for it are the ones not benefiting from it? Not long, I'd wager. At this point our best bet is to let Obamacare run its course, let the government bankrupt itself, and hope we don't bankrupt ourselves because nearly any disease diagnosis in the family will be monumentally expensive.

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