Republican Health Care Bill Shows Why You Can't Work With Republicans

Republican House Minority Leader John Boehner released his party's health care reform “alternative” on Tuesday. The bill is a cruel sick joke. It does not ban insurance companies from refusing to cover pre-existing conditions. It guts state health insurance regulations, and lets insurance companies charge sicker people more.

Now the CBO is out with their analysis. They conclude it would only increase the number of Americans with insurance by three million, and it would reduce the deficit over ten years by $68 billion. Besides not coming close to universal coverage, the bill has several other negative consequences:
Many individuals and families would experience changes in premiums that differed from the changes in average premiums in their insurance market. As explained below, some provisions of the legislation would tend to decrease the premiums paid by all insurance enrollees, while other provisions would tend to increase the premiums paid by less healthy enrollees.

That is right. Republicans health care reform plan is to make insurance even more expensive for those who most need health insurance, because they have medical problems.
Provisions in the amendment that would reduce insurance premiums by affecting the amount of coverage purchased include the State Innovations program, which would encourage states to reduce the number and extent of benefit mandates that they impose, and provisions that would allow individuals or affiliated groups to purchase insurance policies in other states that have less stringent mandates.

The Republican bill would work to make sure health insurance got worse by covering fewer conditions and medical problems. The result would be that many Americans would find their health insurance does not cover what they have once they got sick. Sounds like a recipe for a huge expansion in the number of underinsured.
[T]he State Innovations program would induce states to take some actions affecting the average health status of people with insurance and people without insurance. For example, states that loosened rating rules in the market for individually purchased insurance to allow premiums to vary more on the basis of age would cause premiums for older people to increase and premiums for younger people to decrease. With other factors held equal, fewer older people (who tend to have higher health care costs) and more young people (who tend to have lower health care costs) would then sign up for coverage, and the improved average health status of insured people would lower average premiums; at the same time, the pool of people without health insurance would end up being less healthy, on average, than under current law.

The Republican plan would increase the premiums for people over 45 and therefore drive them out of the health insurance market. Their plan would make the uninsured population in the country even less healthy. This will increase medical bankruptcy and cost-shifting from uncompensated care.

It is clear that the Republican “alternative” isn't going anywhere, and I don't blame for Republican appearing to not put much thought into it, but their alternative bill does do one thing extremely well. It shows the complete futility of Democrats even trying to reach across the aisle on an issue like health care reform. There is no Republican solution to the problem of 45 million uninsured people in this country, nor for the spiraling out of control cost of health care. The fact that Republicans don't even try to solve these problems shows they don't really believe there is a problem at all. This is why there can't be a "meet in the middle," bipartisan compromise. The Republicans don't see a problem that should be and/or can be solved. There can't be a compromise between wanting to do something to fix a problem and an insistence on doing nothing.

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