Leon Troutsky

"Repealing" Obamacare...campaign rhetoric meets political reality.

1,286 posts in this topic

Republicans have for years said they would repeal Obamacare.  Romney and Trump both said "on day one" they would repeal it.  The party leadership has promoted a "stem and root" approach that involves wholesale repeal.  Now that they're in power, they are confronting the political reality that doing it will be far more difficult than saying they will do it on the campaign trail.

So let's look at the political reality.  To start with, in the Senate, there are as many as nine Republicans who are insisting on a replacement plan before repealing Obamacare.  It's unlikely that a full repeal can pass the Senate at this point unless there is a detailed plan to replace it.  It only takes three GOP senators voting against the bill for it to fail.  And again, nine have openly expressed skepticism at the notion of a repeal without replacement.

Why would GOP senators not support a full repeal plan?  Aside from the chaos it would create, there's also the political reality that their campaign rhetoric has never squared with the beliefs of the American public.  

First, the law itself is not as unpopular as they think and, in fact, support for Obamacare is about equally divided.

http://pollingreport.com/health.htm

Kaiser's most recent poll shows the split to be 43% favorable and 46% unfavorable.  CBS and Pew ask if people "approve" of the law and the law is slightly more popular here.  CBS shows 47% approve and 41% disapprove.  Pew has it as 48% approve and 47% disapprove.  All of the polls show similar splits in support/opposition to the ACA.  

Second, the notion of repealing the law has never been popular.  Kaiser poll has 49% of people supporting repeal and 46% opposed.  But, among that 49% who favor "repeal", only 20% favor repealing immediately while 28% favor a replacement.  CBS polls asked a similar questions - should Congress keep the law, change the law, or repeal the law entirely.  10% said keep the law, 62% said change the law, and only 24% said repeal entirely.  Pew has a similar breakdown with 39% supporting expanding the law, 15% support keeping it as-is, and 39% support repealing it.  Though again, the last response also includes people who want to replace the law.  

Moreover, Kaiser has been asking a question about repealing, expanding, keeping as-is, and scaling it back for several years.  Repeal was never popular in their poll, with support ranging from 27-35%.  Expanding was almost as popular as repeal while support for keeping the ACA "as-is" ranged from 15-23%, and scaling back stayed in the low to mid-teens.  

Third, where Republicans have benefited is the very low support for keeping the law "as-is" or not doing anything with the law.  The vast majority of people want to see changes to the law, but about the same number want to see MORE government involvement (e.g., "expanding") as want to see less ("repeal entirely").  And the overwhelming majority of people want to see some changes to the law versus no change or complete repeal without a replacement.  

So the political reality is the public has never supported the "repeal on day one" and "pull it out root and stem" rhetoric by Republicans over the years.  Support for the law is evenly divided and there's no significant trends in either direction.  Precisely because support for the law is evenly divided, the notion of entirely repealing the law has never been popular with the public.  The Republicans do not even have a solid majority of the public supporting the basic ideological notion underlying their repeal rhetoric...a slight majority say that providing health care to Americans is a responsibility of the federal government.  Both Gallup and Pew showed 51-52% of the public saying it's the federal government's responsibility.  And Gallup has asked that question for at least the past 16 years and the numbers have bounced around considerably, but the lowest percentage saying that healthcare is a government responsibility was 42% in 2013 and that number has climbed every year since (it's not at 52%).  

This is the political reality that is crashing into the GOP's "repeal on day one" rhetoric and it's why they almost immediately abandoned that rhetoric after the election.  It's also why their new "repeal and delay' approach is going to have a hard time passing in the Senate.  They are trapped right now between needing at least a symbolic vote to "repeal" the law in the next month or so and the reality that an actual repeal (or delay) is going to be unpopular with the American public.  And if they abandon the symbolic vote early and spend the first several months working on a viable replacement, they risk angering their base supporters who were promised repeal on "day one" by the GOP leaders and Trump himself.  

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1 minute ago, lostone said:

Obama said he'd close gitmo day 1...

Ah, gotcha.  Yep, it's very much like that.  It still amazes me that politicians make these sweeping promises that they either know they can't keep or should know they can't keep.  And this election, Trump made a helluva lot of them.  

Look how much time and energy is going into trying to get a repeal bill together.  Repeal has been a centerpiece of the GOP's policy for years and they're scrambling to find some type of plan that can pass the Senate.  Now consider how much more is going to be required for legislation to build a "great wall", cut taxes, suspend immigration from certain countries, renegotiate NAFTA, impose tariffs and redo trade deals with countries like China, and so forth.  

And Trump is likely to start out with the lowest approval ratings of any president in modern history.  That's going to make passing sweeping (and largley unpopular) policies even more difficult.

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There has been a post where a R asked why the D's are not volunteering to help with the ACA repeal. Why would the D's work against their own product. I know some R's are ignorant but this guy was brain dead.

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1 minute ago, big_dog said:

There has been a post where a R asked why the D's are not volunteering to help with the ACA repeal. Why would the D's work against their own product. I know some R's are ignorant but this guy was brain dead.

Who said that?  I agree that it's silly for Democrats to help Republicans repeal their signature legislation.  They should work on ideas to improve it.  But let Republicans repeal it and suffer the consequences of their dumb decision.  

That's probably why Republicans are scrambling to come up with a plan that will appease their base and not create public backlash against it.

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1 minute ago, Leon Troutsky said:

Who said that?  I agree that it's silly for Democrats to help Republicans repeal their signature legislation.  They should work on ideas to improve it.  But let Republicans repeal it and suffer the consequences of their dumb decision.  

 

I'll dig back and find it. It was a couple days ago and not from the 3 stooges we usually argue with.

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Just now, big_dog said:

I'll dig back and find it. It was a couple days ago and not from the 3 stooges we usually argue with.

Thanks.

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24 minutes ago, Leon Troutsky said:

Thanks.

Posted by Doozer on 1/09/17  "why can't the democrats help"

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1 hour ago, Leon Troutsky said:

Ah, gotcha.  Yep, it's very much like that.  It still amazes me that politicians make these sweeping promises that they either know they can't keep or should know they can't keep.  And this election, Trump made a helluva lot of them.  

Why wouldn't they?  Their fanboys consistently reward them for it, and independents seem to only punish them ever 8 years or so.

There is literally no downside to lying. That's our fault, not theirs.

kicker, capologist and mdrake34 like this

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Just now, big_dog said:

action.jpg  What else?

:lol:

Okay, can we get away from talking about other posters?  The point is that Republicans own the consequences of their policies and actions now.  They have to walk a tightrope between appeasing their base and passing policies that won't cause backlash by the broader public, which is not supportive of the positions they campaigned on.  I think the ACA repeal efforts are a great illustration of something that is going to be an ongoing problem for Republicans.

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Bob Corker on repealing efforts and Trump's alleged view that he wants a replacement simultaneous with repeal:

“If it is his view, it would be really good if he would consider tweeting it out very clearly,” said Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), who supports having a replacement in hand alongside repeal. 

Corker said he will offer legislation to delay the current date of an Obamacare repeal bill via the budget reconciliation procedure from Jan. 27 until March 3, to give the party more time to craft a health care plan. 

“There’s more and more concerns about not doing it simultaneously,” Corker said. “You would think after six years we would have a pretty good sense of what we would like to do.”

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Just now, mdrake34 said:

I'm counting down until we build the wall and make Mexico pay for it. 

Let me tell you its gonna be tremendous.

mdrake34 likes this

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5 hours ago, Leon Troutsky said:

Republicans have for years said they would repeal Obamacare.  Romney and Trump both said "on day one" they would repeal it.  

Every new POTUS says on day one they're going to do something and it never gets done...stop being so nit-picky and don't get your panties in a wad all over this.  Give the man a chance.  

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2 minutes ago, WhenFalconsWin said:

Every new POTUS says on day one they're going to do something and it never gets done...stop being so nit-picky and don't get your panties in a wad all over this.  Give the man a chance.  

..........................................................

I need more dots!

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1 minute ago, lostone said:

..........................................................

I need more dots!

Just like you need to your own research...let's cal it a wash ;)

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Just now, WhenFalconsWin said:

Just like you need to your own research...let's cal it a wash ;)

I ask you to back up your claims and you tell me to do my own research.  That is the responsibility of the person making the argument

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31 minutes ago, Forever Julian said:

Let me tell you its gonna be tremendous.

Hopefully it will have the TRUMP lettering taken down from his hotels at each border crossing.

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5 minutes ago, lostone said:

I ask you to back up your claims and you tell me to do my own research.  That is the responsibility of the person making the argument

You already had the info and you wanted more.  I'll give it the first time, if you need more after that, that's on you.  

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