Mick Mulvaney, de facto acting president, announced on Fox News Sunday that “you’ll consider a plan here reasonably shortly” from Republican for Trumpcare, adding, “Republicans have better ideas than Democrat. We should not be afraid to talk about that. […] We want to run on this.” That’s kind of a problem for them, since there aren’t any actual Republican actually working on “a plan.”
Sen. Rick Scott, the Florida Republican whose most salient healthcare experience is having been in charge of the company that perpetrated the biggest Medicare fraud to date, was supposed to have been Donald Trump’s go-to guy for coming up with Trumpcare. That’s what the White House said. But Scott says it was news to him when the White House attained that proclamation. The rest of the team Trump supposedly put together–Wyoming’s John Barrasso, Utah’s Mitt Romney( hilariously ), and Louisiana’s Bill Cassidy–all have other things on their mind.
Romney says he and the others have “health care thoughts.” Barrasso won’t say anything about any Republican ideas, uttering simply, “Democrats want to go to the complete government takeover of health care.” Because that type of commentary has worked so well for the past decade. Cassidy, whose plan with Lindsey Graham failed because it couldn’t get Republican support, calls his own proposal “dead.” That’s despite it being featured in the 2020 budget request from the White House. As ever, the problem for Republicans is that there is no plan they can agree on. Trump and the Freedom Caucus want complete and total demolition of anything that has anything to do with the Affordable Care Act; all the other Republican who watched 2018 want to keep their promise to save people with pre-existing conditions.
Most Republicans, like Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas, ranking member on the House Style and Means Committee, say it’s time for a “fresh start on health care.” After which they rehash a bunch of ideas that Republican have been kicking around for a decade. Politico reports that Arkansas Rep. Bruce Westerman has actual legislation. Interestingly, it has zero co-sponsors. More interestingly, it does nothing more than codify all the Trump rules and regulations sabotaging Obamacare. And it has been roundly rejected by fellow Republicans.
Never fear, though, says Sen. Thom Tillis. The North Carolina Republican, up for re-election next year, promises “we’ll have a solution to the problem.” That solution, though, might leave something to be desired. “If you look at the proposals we were cycling through when we were on the brink of repealing Obamacare, it’ll be likely those, and some new ideas.” Bring on 2020.
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