Watch out, Medicare and Medicaid — they’re coming for you

When Reagansaurus roamed the North American continent, he was clear about distinguishing between keeping Social Security and eliminating what he said were the “excesses” of the Great Society. He meant Medicare and Medicaid, which for the GOP represent in the case of the former unearned help for people who can’t pay for their senescence and in the case of the latter free health care for the indolent, worthless, and what the British call the redundant. The lucky include those fortunate enough to use Social Security survivor benefits to pay for copies of The Fountainhead read in college.

With the evisceration of the Affordable Care Act promised by the House GOP plan, the more sinister probability emerges that “the excesses” of the Great Society” are precisely what Ryan and Alabama’s Mo Brooks want to destroy, according to Tierney Sneed’s reporting:

But the bill’s major pay-for, to the tune of nearly a trillion dollars, is its overhaul of Medicaid and that’s where most of its coverage losses come from too. The Congressional Budget Office said this week that 14 million people would lose their coverage due to the legislation’s Medicaid provisions, though it’s unclear how many of those are a result of the phase out of Medicaid’s expanded eligibility versus its transformation of the larger program into a per-enrollee block grant.


With the feds offering a smaller and smaller share of the total costs to cover a state’s Medicaid program, the state will have the choice of either finding new revenue — via tax hikes or cuts elsewhere in their budgets — or making cuts to the program, such as offering fewer benefits or imposing cost-sharing or work requirements (which the Department of Health and Humans Services, under Secretary Tom Price, is already practically begging states to do.

On Chris Hayes’ show last night, Brooks said with the certainty of the converted and the insouciance of the psychopath comfortable in his own skin that he “absolutely” supports rescinding protections for preexisting conditions, supports a lifetime gap in benefits, keep lifetime cap, and would prevent children from remaining on their parents’ plan because in 2009 we had the “best healthcare system in the world.” Brooks’ honesty was refreshing.

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