Showing posts with label Obamacare. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Obamacare. Show all posts

Sunday, January 15, 2017


If you have health insurance under the ACA or the Affordable Care Act, which is the same thing, you are covered by Obamacare. If Republicans succeed in repealing Obamacare, you will lose your coverage under the ACA.

Friday, January 6, 2017


Paul Ryan blathers on about Obamacare...we'll repeal it this year, blah, blah, blah...we'll have a plan, blah, blah, blah....  Maybe they will, and maybe they won't, but ask yourself if the continuing conversation about Obamacare is perhaps a distraction from what the members of the GOP are actually doing in the House.  Remember this from early December?
Donald Trump’s transition team has issued a list of 74 questions for the Energy Department, asking agency officials to identify which employees and contractors have worked on forging an international climate pact as well as domestic efforts to cut the nation’s carbon output.

The questionnaire requests a list of those individuals who have taken part in international climate talks over the past five years and “which programs within DOE are essential to meeting the goals of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan.”  (My emphasis)
And then this from yesterday while Ryan was blathering about Obamacare.
House Republicans this week reinstated a procedural rule created in 1876 that allows lawmakers to cut the pay of individual federal workers down to $1, The Washington Post reported Thursday.

The Holman Rule allows members of Congress to propose amendments to appropriations bills that target specific government employees or programs in an effort to cut spending.
One wonders if the Trump transition team wanted the present Energy Department to name names and then later Congress will use the old procedural rule from 1876 to cut the salaries of the employees to $1 per year, under cover of cutting spending.  That would be the same as firing them.  Of course, once Trump is inaugurated, he will have access to all the information on the employees and contractors.

Will all efforts to reduce carbon output and lessen effects on the climate from fossil fuels both domestically and internationally come to an end?  The mischief we will see from the present unrestrained GOP Congress will go far beyond repealing Obamacare, which seems to be making its way to the back burner, because there is no plan to replace the ACA, and some Republican members are getting jittery.

As you listen to what Trump and the GOP say, watch what they do, because what they make the most noise about is sometimes no more than a distraction from the mischief the Republican Congress is already making.
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told reporters this week that the Holman Rule gives Congress a chance to change how government works, something voters asked for when they voted for Trump.

"This is a big rule change inside there that allows people to get at places they hadn’t before,” he told reporters.
Indeed it is.  To paraphrase Dr Seuss, oh, the places they'll go.

Friday, October 17, 2014


From an excellent letter to the Advocate newspaper by David Hood, former secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Baton Rouge.
Several Louisiana health insurance companies have announced that they want to raise premium rates for some policies next year. Opponents of the Affordable Care Act are using this to again attack the law and its impacts on health insurance. But consumers — and voters — should keep a clear head and ask some basic questions.

The ACA requires companies to publicly justify rate increases of over 10 percent, and requires 80 percent of premium dollars be spent on health care, not administrative “overhead.” Consumers are better off because of those provisions, though some states like Louisiana have not allowed the law’s full benefits to be implemented.

Given that Louisiana has the third-highest rate of uninsured people in the nation, and that we rate 49th in poor health outcomes, we should support “Obamacare,” not fight it.
David Hood replaced Bobby Jindal as head of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals during the administration of Gov. Mike Foster, when Jindal was drafted by the Clinton administration as a bipartisan showpiece to serve as Assistant Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services.  Hood serves as Senior Healthcare Analyst for the Public Affairs Research Council and knows whereof he speaks.

Here's the link to a video of David Hood speaking great good sense about Jindal's refusal to accept federal funds for Medicaid expansion, which would provide health insurance for up to 400,000 uninsured citizens of Louisiana.  "What are we waiting for?" The funds that Jindal refuses go to other states.

Photo from Louisiana Public Square.

Friday, March 28, 2014


Fox News and friends, including Sen David Vitter (R-LA), are freaking out over President Obama's extension by a few days of the deadline for the sign-up period for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. Once again, Republicans demonstrate signs of impaired memory about the rollout of Medicare Part D under President George W Bush.

Below is the text of my letter to Sen David Vitter in response to his recent email suggesting that I send him my ideas on Obamacare.

Dear Sen. Vitter,

Your recent email on Obamacare is nothing but a load of malarkey.  If you see those words as acceptable, you must really think I'm stupid.  After a bad start, Obamacare is doing exactly what it's supposed to be doing.  Perhaps your memory is not entirely clear about the rocky beginning and the extension of the deadline in the rollout of Medicare Part D under President George W. Bush.
'In May of 2006, just days before the end of open enrollment, President Bush took administrative action to waive “penalty fees for very low-income seniors and people with disabilities who sign up late” and allowed “the same impoverished beneficiaries to sign up for Medicare drug coverage until Dec. 31.”

“In other words, you can apply after May 15th without penalty,” Bush told seniors during an event in Florida. “And that’s important for low-income seniors to understand.”
Republicans seem to have selective memory recall about the periods in recent history when they were running the show.  Why not spend your time and our tax dollars doing something useful, such as helping the uninsured in Louisiana obtain health insurance, rather than repeatedly harping on the evils of the Obama administration?  The constant reiteration of the same old, same old is beyond tiresome.

Thank you for your attention.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


"Americans for Prosperity", the well-funded conservative group that has been attacking Democrats in battleground states over the health care reform law, put out TV ads Monday against Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Mark Udall (D-CO).

"But what's notable about the ads is what they aren't: A personalized story of someone who's been negatively affected by Obamacare, the kind of verifiable set of facts that can be checked -- and rebutted, as happened with a recent AFP ad that led to significant backlash from the fact-checking community."
Watch the ad. I've seen it more times than I can count. The new tactic for anti-Democratic campaign ads by AFP (think Koch brothers) is to include no facts that can be checked. When I saw the video for the first time, I was caught off guard until the very end, when the woman instructs viewers to call Sen. Mary Landrieu's office to tell her about the horrors of Obamacare. My counter-suggestion to people in Louisiana is to call Landrieu's office and tell her you approve of Obamacare as a stopgap until we adopt a single-payer health plan for the entire country.

The amount of money being spent by the Koch brothers and their ilk is incredible this early in the election game. I hope viewers will become bored and weary of the ads and tune out.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Only until the weak are born. If parents in Louisiana need help for the child after birth, well good luck with that. Gov. Jindal will not implement Medicaid Expansion, though it would not cost the state one cent for 9 years, and thereafter only 10% of the expenses of the programs.

The group that awarded Louisiana the "prize",  Americans United for Life, apparently does not follow up on the care given to the "weakest and most vulnerable among us" after they're born, or they would remind Gov. Jindal that babies, indeed all vulnerable human beings among us, need care throughout their lives after they're brought into the world.

At least one Louisiana state senator is trying to provide health insurance for low income people in Louisiana. 
State Sen. Ben Nevers said Tuesday that he would propose two constitutional amendments aimed at guaranteeing that low income Louisiana adults get basic health care coverage.

Nevers, D-Bogalusa, said he wants Louisiana voters to either authorize expansion of the state Medicaid program called for in the federal health care revamp or to provide health care coverage for residents whose income falls below the federal poverty level.

The Kaiser Commission estimates 242,000 Louisiana residents, who make too much for Medicaid but too little to purchase adequate insurance, would qualify for Medicaid coverage through the expansion. For an individual, 100 percent of the federal poverty level is $11,490. For a family of four, it’s $23,550. At 138 percent for an individual it’s $15,856 and family of four $32,499.

Nevers said people are ending up in hospital emergency rooms with serious illnesses because of lack of health care and that “cost all of us millions.”
There's no such thing as free emergency room care; someone pays.  I hope other legislators take note and support Sen. Nevers in his efforts to provide health insurance for those who cannot afford the premiums, since the governor refuses to address the problem.

And further, if you click the link, you will read about two success stories from people who were able to buy affordable health insurance through - Gasp! - the Affordable Health Care Act, aka Obamacare.
'Tierney Brinkman, a New Orleans server and bartender, said she went without insurance for 10 years. “It’s not that I didn’t want it. I had a pre-existing condition,” said Brinkman, explaining she had lumps in her breast and breast cancer in her family. She said either no company would insure her or the monthly premiums were “well beyond my means.” That 10 years without coverage was “terrifying,” she said.

Because of the Affordable Care Act, Brinkman said she now has a quality plan with a low deductible: $108 a month.
Despite the horror stories, the ACA is working as it should to provide health insurance for those who previously could not obtain coverage or who paid very high premiums because of preexisting conditions.  Insurance, any insurance, is about spreading the risk throughout a large number of people.  For the young and healthy who say they don't need health insurance, I remind them that even among their age group, even if only a small number, some will be diagnosed with a medical condition that requires expensive treatment.  Further, no one is able to predict an accidental injury that would require long-term medical treatment.  

Monday, November 18, 2013


When Republican Rodney Alexander resigned from Congress a few months ago, there wasn’t any real doubt that his Louisiana district would remain in GOP hands. The only question was which Republican would replace him in Louisiana’s ruby-red 5th district.
State Sen. Neil Riser (R) looked like he’d win easily – he received endorsements from Alexander, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the NRA, and nearly all of Louisiana’s Republican congressional delegation. But then the votes were tallied in Saturday’s run-off election, and Vance McAllister (R), a first-time candidate, crushed Riser by nearly 20 points.
Take that Neil Riser, Bobby Jindal, and Eric Cantor!  Follow Gov. Jindal's advice and stop being the stupid party.   Of course, it's quite likely that none of you has any idea how to change direction.

As reported in the Times-Picayune, McAllister favored implementation of the Medicaid expansion section of Obamacare.  The expansion is a no-brainer for Louisiana. The federal program would cover about 400,000 low-income people who have no health insurance, and would not cost the state one cent for 9 years, when the state would assume only 10% of the cost. The good news is the extremist Republican didn't win.  Gov. Bobby Jindal's approval ratings were at 28% in August of this year, and McAllister's election confirms that many citizens in Louisiana do not approve of Jindal's extremist policies.  Keep in mind that the area in which McAllister was elected is conservative, but the extremist candidate was too much for the voters to swallow.
In fairness, it’s worth emphasizing that Rep.-elect McAllister didn’t exactly run as a progressive on health care – the Republican said he’d prefer to repeal the Affordable Care Act. But he nevertheless stuck to a fairly pragmatic line and told the far-right what it didn’t want to hear – repealing the entirety of the law is unrealistic and Medicaid expansion in Louisiana is a sensible move, even if Bobby Jindal pretends otherwise.
In this district, that was a risky move, and it led Riser and his allies to make the race a referendum over health care. And then McAllister won by about 20 points anyway.
National Republicans would be wise to take note. For many in the party, grunting “Obamacare bad!” is a sure-fire recipe for electoral success. Indeed, GOP leaders have started to think it’ll be easy – tie rival candidates to the controversial health care law, watch voters recoil, and wait for the landslide victories to commence.
Republicans may find that they have to dredge up other issues besides Obamacare if they want to win elections. Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi!?  Also, Republicans out there who think Bobby Jindal's support is an asset might want to think again.  If Jindal and his friends and advisers still live in the fantasy world that sees him as having a chance of being nominated or elected to a national office, it's time for them to wake up and take their places in the real world.  

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


[Sen.] Reid, D-Nev., said Vitter and other Republicans must stop trying to prevent the Affordable Care Act from being implemented and that they need to “grow up” and “stop denying reality.”

Dear Sen. Vitter (R):

Please stop playing the fool in the US Senate. You are an embarrassment.


Disloyal Constituent

U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-Baton Rouge, also announced that he will support a House version of Vitter’s Obamacare proposal.
Dear Rep: Cassidy (R):

Do not make the mistake of asking me for a contribution to your campaign for the US Senate. One Louisiana senator acting the fool is one too many.


Disloyal Constituent

Friday, October 26, 2012



Yes, Bobby Jindal said "Obamneycare" in a slip of the tongue.

The picture also serves as a reminder that people will lose their health care coverage if Mitt Romney is elected president.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


Sometime before the election in November, I hope to have not only Bobby Jindal say Obamneycare but Romney himself say Obamneycare.

Friday, June 29, 2012


UPDATE: Or as Gov Bobby Jindal of the Gret Stet of Loosiana succinctly puts it - "Obamneycare".
In a brief slip of the tongue while discussing the Supreme Court’s health-care ruling, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal invoked the term “Obomney’’ care, a phrase that does Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney no favors.

“There’s only one candidate, Gov. Romney, who has committed that he will repeal the Obomney, uh, the Obamacare tax increase,’’ Mr. Jindal said.

H/T to David A on Facebook.