The Killing of Obamacare

As the Republicans in Congress launch yet another attack on Obamacare, I wonder what they think they would achieve. Why deliberately deprive millions of their health care? Why sabotage Medicaid?

What do they think they would gain from inflicting such widespread suffering?

The latest proposal would let the states control health insurance, and this would be a welcome development to states rights fans.

But it would spawn a web of wildly different health care systems across America. I’ll leave it to your imagination to picture the chaos this could cause.

I think the plan is intended to head off a nationwide single-payer program.  Cobbling together so many divergent health insurance programs would be a Herculean task.

But if the Republicans succeed in passing this latest abomination, it would surely backfire. Some states will opt for their own government run program, and when the rest of the country sees how well it works, the idea will spread to other states.

That’s what happened in Canada. Saskatchewan went first with government provided health insurance, and the rest of the country followed.

This kind of evolution takes time of course, and the suffering that would ensue in the meantime is too tragic to contemplate.

Obamacare opponents are vehement, but they represent less than a third of the electorate. Polls show the rest of America would prefer to keep the program – warts and all. The Republicans would get thrashed in the midterm elections if they kill it.

If they know what’s best for them, they will concede the inevitability of federally provided health insurance, either competing with or replacing the private insurers. That’s the way it is in the rest of the developed world.

I would advise the GOP to try working out a compromise with the Democrats. It’s their only sensible option. But I know they won’t take my advice. They never do.

What’s in the latest bill

What happened in Canada

gwgraeme

I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for Jamaicans.com

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