Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Republicans can't decide what to call their health plan. It doesn't matter; it will never become law.

The Republican's long-anticipated "replacement" for Obamacare has finally been released;  and, frankly, they needn't have bothered.   It will never become law.

There are various Republican factions who hate it, for different reasons.   No one praises it or even sorta, maybe likes it a little bit.

It does keep the pre-existing conditions rule, and it lets kids stay on their parents' plan until 26.   On the other hand, it ends subsidies in favor of tax credits.   That's not gonna work.

It includes billions in tax cuts for the wealthy, partly offset by increasing premiums for those 50 and over.   It gives a tip of the hat to ending Medicaid expansion, but it's not clear exactly how bad that is.

Here's the biggest reason it will never pass:    the Congressional Budget Office has not yet analyzed the plan to estimate (1) how many people will lose coverage (a lot) and (2) how much it will cost.

Those are the most critical issues, and everything suggests that each will be enough to make the bill untenable -- and both together will make it political suicide.

That's what I think.


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