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Packed by weight, not volume

Just in case the Supreme Court strikes down Obamacare’s subsidies for people who bought health insurance on the federal exchange, three Republican senators have written an important Op-Ed in the Washington Post to reassure Americans that “We have a plan for fixing health care.” It’s a pretty impressive plan that should allay the worries of the 6 million Americans who signed up through the federal marketplace that they’ll suddenly be unable to afford decent insurance. Again.

Now don’t you go making fun of Orrin Hatch, Lamar Alexander and John Barrasso about the perceived inadequacies of the old Republican alternative to the ACA, which looked like this:

1. Repeal Obamacare
2. ????
3. We win!

This new plan is completely different. Just look:

1. Hope The Supreme Court rules against Obamacare
2. ????
3. We win!

That’s 33% new content right there! Plus, just take a gander at these specifics for a “bridge away from Obamacare”:

First and most important: We would provide financial assistance to help Americans keep the coverage they picked for a transitional period. It would be unfair to allow families to lose their coverage, particularly in the middle of the year.

See? They’re not monsters — they won’t cut you off right in the middle of the year. They’ll help you out for six months, give or take one to twenty-six weeks. Besides, they know what trials Americans have suffered through already:

Most of these people have gone through the wringer to get this insurance. Millions lost their previous health-care plans because those plans didn’t meet Obamacare’s requirements; others no longer have access to the doctors or hospitals they were accustomed to; millions spent weeks trying to purchase insurance on the flawed Web site rolled out by the administration; and many have seen their out-of-pocket health costs or premiums skyrocket.

And for millions more, it was very traumatic to go from the certainty that they had no coverage at all to the strange new world of “not being rejected for preexisting conditions,” of “going to the doctor” and “not being bankrupted by a health emergency.” The GOP plan will return us to the clarity of the old system: no money, no care.

In addition, the Republican plan will “give states the freedom and flexibility to create better, more competitive health insurance markets offering more options and different choices.” In other words, it’s not so much a “plan” as a promise to “let the states figure it out somehow.” And even better, they also promise that

People who live in states that have state exchanges will continue to be subject to Obamacare’s costly mandates and rules, along with the subsidies. But their states could also have the benefit of our solution. Every state would have the ability to create better markets suited to the needs of their citizens.

This is pretty generous — soon, Kentuckians, whose state exchange has been remarkably successful at getting more people insured, could look forward to having the same freedom from healthcare as Mississippi!

And that’s the plan! Promise a brief period of transitional assistance, let the states do what they want, and encourage the dismantling of the state exchanges that are up and running. Thank God — with just a few simple tweaks, like allowing people to buy junk insurance policies across state lines and letting insurance companies go back to denying coverage whenever they want, America may soon reclaim its status as the 37th best healthcare system in the world. So yes, the GOP does indeed have a bridge away from Obamacare — and it’s a Bridge to Nowhere.

[WaPo]

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  • Nounverb911

    Does the republican’s plan bring back “Death Panels”? And will they make it a Cabinet position?

    • Since it no doubt puts healthcare decisions back into the hands of insurance company underwriters, I’ll go with “yes”.

  • memzilla

    This will pair perfectly with the Rethuglican replacement for food stamps: a coooolwater sammich on a Sunday go-to-meetin’ bun.

    • HogeyeGrex

      Bow bow bow…

    • Msgr_Moment

      More like a ricochet biscuit.

  • Oblios_Cap

    single payer or GTFO

    • Blank Ron

      Why do you hate America?

  • JustPixelz

    “Most of these people have gone through the wringer to get this insurance.”

    I did it. It was easy. Perhaps the Senators have never had to personally check a “select plan” box before.

    • freakishlystrong

      Nor pay for it.

    • chicken thief

      My oldest also too did it. It did take him some time since he isn’t all that savvy regarding coverages, options, etc. and the shear volume of options (NJ) was pretty overwhelming. But with Mrs CT’s help, he was able to extricate himself from the wringer in a couple of hours.

    • Guest

      Like many people, I have insurance through my employer. I didn’t have to do anything. That was such a wringer!

    • jmk

      The hardest part was deciding which of the many affordable (less than I paid through an employer) options to choose.

      My GOPSpeak is not fluent – does that count as “the wringer”?

  • Toomush_Infer

    Our new plan is to rename it Bonercare!….

    • Nounverb911

      Viagra cures everything?

      • Toomush_Infer

        Slogan: It’s not just for Men!…

  • Steverino247

    The current Republican Party fantasizes about writing “Big Government Cannot Help You” in the concrete around the feet of the nation’s uninsured as that concrete hardens.

  • deanbooth

    This makes me sick!

    • Logic of Color

      Too…many…comebacks…must focus…

  • JustPixelz

    “People who live in states that have state exchanges will continue to be subject to Obamacare’s costly mandates and rules, along with the subsidies.”

    Also, those people will continue to have health insurance.

    • Tallmutha

      I got insurance on the New York state exchange and its costly rules and mandates saved me $14,000 in 2014.

      • Manhattan123

        I’m in NY too. My plan went from $560/month under the old system to $286/month under the ACA. Good luck, Mississippi and the rest of Red State America. Suckers.

    • The subsidies which pay for the costly mandates and rules.

  • memzilla

    All these people with Government-guaranteed health care, trying to deny the rest of us Government-guaranteed health care. I look forward to the day we can cure asshatitis.

    • Blank Ron

      There is a cure. I believe it involves pitchforks.

      • sohadicouldsplit

        Until the guillotines are assembled. Damn you Ikea!

        • david green

          You didn’t get all the parts either?

        • david green

          You didn’t get all the parts either?

  • Logic of Color

    All the replacement plan needs is a snappy new name. How ’bout Freedom care! or maybe Boehner care!

    • PubOption

      Freedomcare. Once again we can quote the philosopher Kristofferson.

    • JustPixelz

      Jeebus Health Systems
      Because heaven can’t wait

    • cousin itt

      Orange Care is the new despair.

      • John Boehner does not represent the color Orange, nor Orange people or Orange pixels. He, like George Hamilton before him, merely adopted the color Orange in an effort to look super cool.

        Orangecare, for the record, would rock your socks off.

        • PubOption

          But, if he caves in to the Teabaggers and libertarians, will we have the Orange Free State?

        • SterWonk

          Orangecare, for the record, would rock your socks off.

          That’s what she said. (And by “she”, I mean Trix. On account of you guys being happily married with a kid on the way.)

          (Can you tell I’m trying to make up from my previous aspersions on your asparagus? Please don’t banhammer me!)

          ;-)

  • JustPixelz

    “We would provide financial assistance to help Americans keep the coverage they picked for a transitional period.”

    The GOP plan will pay for (off-peak) bus fare to the hospital waiting room. That’s as close to health care as uninsured people will get.

  • SnarkOff

    So their plan is: 1. No birth control of any kind, but also no abortions, and we will not take care of any unwanted babies that result from the no birth control and no abortions. 2. When you get cancer from the environmental pollution we totally condone, our healthcare plan will not pay for that either. 3. Ditto obesity, heart disease and/or diabetes from the unregulated crap we believe the fast food industry should have the freedom to relentlessly market to you.

    • Nounverb911

      Items 2 & 3 are headcount reduction programs to make room for item 1.

  • stankbait

    Boehner looks juandiced. Does that have something to do with your liver?

    • sohadicouldsplit

      His liver took a powder decades ago. He replaced it with a tanning bed.

  • formerChild

    I say turn it all over to the House Committee on Space, Science & Technology. They’re the only guys in the room with the expertise to fix this mess.

    • willi0000000

      re: ‘the mess’

      “it doesn’t exist, it never existed in the past and it will never exist in the future!!!!! . . . or maybe it always existed . . . because SHUTUP!!!!!”
      – HCoSS&T

  • AngryBlakGuy

    …their revised Obama-care replacement is based on “Go Fund Me”

    • Logic of Color

      Didn’t Dilbert’s company replace their health plan with Google once?

      • Spotts1701

        They also replaced the company nurse with a vending machine full of bandages and gauze. Then came the memo to increase vending machine sales…

        • AngryBlakGuy

          …now that is what I call grade “A” FREEDOM!!!

  • MrBlobfish

    Translation: we don’t care.

  • Spotts1701

    Something tells me they didn’t quite think this plan through.

    • Nounverb911

      Thinking and republicans are contradictory terms.

    • willi0000000

      they’ve thought about this for a long time . . . nothing else they could come up with has the potential for causing more deaths, pain and suffering . . . except that modest proposal thing and the camps with the ovens . . . so they’re going with this.

      [the other two were just too obvious]

  • SigDeFlyinMonky

    It, as always, is back to government by sloganeering. Just repeat this phrase until we get an acceptable answer (And “No, we don’t.” Is an acceptable answer.); Do the Republicans have a practical policy to implement addressing this issue?”

    • sohadicouldsplit

      “The answer is money. Yours. Now what’s your fucking question?”

  • JustPixelz

    I invite all those who voted to repeal the ACA to give up their government health insurance and go into the market. If they have the metaphorical balls.

  • orygoon

    GoFundMeCare.

    • GDleftyPart2

      Sheriff Richard Mack’s new healthcare plan, relabeled FreedomCareAZ, where you’re free of health care…

      No co-pays, no rate increases, no paperwork.
      Die quietly please, we don’t want to upset the others…

    • sohadicouldsplit

      GOPFukdMe

      Fixed?

  • FauxAntocles

    Rethuglican theme song:

    We’re on a ride to nowhere
    Come on inside
    Takin’ that ride to nowhere
    We’ll take that ride

    Maybe you wonder where you are
    I don’t care
    Here is where time is on our side
    Take you there, take you there

    We’re on a road to nowhere
    We’re on a road to nowhere
    We’re on a road to nowhere

  • freakishlystrong

    As awful as this is going to be, it may amusing, (but not funny haha), to watch Mitch and Rand writhe about and explain to all those newly insured right wing Kentuckians, why they can no longer afford their “Kynect”. Serves them right.

    • JustPixelz

      State exchange customers should be OK. Amirite?

      • freakishlystrong

        Oh yeah. D Governor. I think I especially want Mitch to squirm. I forgot about their exchange.

    • sohadicouldsplit

      Mitch only writhes when he passes Aaron Schock in the hall.

      And this would indeed be a golden opportunity to ask short-n-squirrley: “Who is Ann O’Connor”?

  • Bureaucrap

    AFFORDABLE HEALTH CARE IS SLAVERY!!!! IT’S THE HOLOCAUST!!! IT’S HITLER AND STALIN COMBINED!! GOD HATES AFFORDABILITY!!

    • JustPixelz

      As Jesus said after curing Aaron the Leper, “Your co-pay is $25.”

      • cousin itt

        And ex-lepers still beg for alms.

        • JeffWest

          is there really anything left when a leper becomes an ex-leper?

          • Mehmeisterjr

            I just don’t want to share a bathroom with a trans-ex-leper.

      • Reddishrabbit

        Didn’t he have to start a gofundme page?

  • JustPixelz

    Maybe one of the smart people on wonket knows what will happen if subsidies for non-state-exchange policies are dropped. I assume (or hope, because I live in CT with its own exchange), those state plans will continue to be subsidized. Doesn’t that set up a system where taxpayers in all states are footing the bill for the benefit of people like me? That sounds pretty socialist.

    • MrBlobfish

      Sorry. Me not smart.

    • chicken thief

      That is correct. Those redominantly red states will fuck their own out of coverage assistance while still assisting those in the states that did set up exchanges – BRILLIANT!

      • laineypc

        This is a false flag operation by the dems to make everyone throw up their arms and call for single payer.

  • Callyson

    I went to the WaPo op-ed, thinking there had to be something more there. Nope–for those who can’t click the link, Dok’s summary tells the whole GOP plan.

    I guess Alan Grayson nailed it after all:

    Don’t get sick.

    /FFS

  • Manhattan123

    Where’s the guy with the snowball? I’d like to hear his thoughts on this matter.

  • whatwhomever

    I wouldn’t trust those assholes to fix a buttlug. And that has no moving parts. And it’s something they like!

  • Joshua Norton

    “We have a plan for fixing health care.”

    You know what they say. If it ain’t broke, break it!

  • Bitter Scribe

    “give states the freedom and flexibility to create better, more competitive health insurance markets offering more options and different choices.”

    In other words, let the insurance companies flock to the state (singular) with the most bribeable government.

    • NationalGalleryofClipArt

      This is GOOD NEWS for Walker & Kleefisch & Vos.

  • Poly_Ester

    Ya know, if access to your current doctor is important to you, you might have thought to ask the doctor which networks he or she participates in, instead of buying the cheapest insurance on the exchange. Butthen the GOP base isn’t very into thinking.

    • SuspectedDemocrat

      This has always been true. It was fun watching the GOP balk at actually fixing provider networks, after all the complaining they did.

  • JeffWest

    Yes, you lost your overpriced insurance policy that evaporated if you actually needed to use it, but fear not, the GOP will make sure your new policy is as insanely expensive as it is completely useless.

  • Shorter article: “We’ll just treat healthcare insurance like credit cards. That’ll get you the best coverage for the lowest price.”

  • chicken thief

    “It would be unfair to allow families to lose their coverage,…”

    This will give all ya’ll losing coverage time to either move to Canada or die, so our conscience will be clear, the trio added.

    • retiredeng

      Remember when the ACA first got going? There were irate idiots swearing to move to Canada to get away from ‘socialized health care’. The mind boggles at the lunacy.

      • laineypc

        Yeah I remember that. Good times.

      • david green

        Yet, sadly (for us anyway. Canada dodged a bullet) none of them left.

  • GDleftyPart2

    As someone who’s employment has caused rate increases and Dr. changes almost every damn time it’s up for renewal, the hyperventilating over increases and any changes that were routine before ACA is just laughable.
    Insurance costs have apparently NEVER gone up for GOTP members before now.
    It’s a con-spiracy I tells ya!

    • JustPixelz

      The realities of insurance in the workplace and coping with the many complex rules are beyond the comprehension of these 1% Senators. It looks like they would prefer the predictability and simplicity of single payer.

  • JeffWest

    I don’t think BoehnerCare can fix anything that doesn’t require a little blue pill.

    • TheBidenator

      and a shitload of booze, probably a carton of cigarettes as well…and orange paint.

    • Logic of Color

      In the event your Boehner last longer than four hours drink a large quantity of vodka tang

  • chicken thief

    Snark aside, I suspect Congress and R Govs are starting to feel the heat from millions being kicked off coverage. Besides those covered, I can’t imagine that the insurance companies are all that thrilled with losing clients.

    • Reddishrabbit

      And Hospitals who have calculated for more insured and far less unpaid emergency room visits. Savings that benefit everyone.

      • laineypc

        I wonder if anyone is going to calculate the administrative costs to insurers and providers associated with whipsawing health policies/regulations yet again?

  • TheBidenator

    These scheisty motherfuckers loved the old system so to them going back to it and adding small ‘tweaks’ like tax credits and expanding HSA’s is all that’s needed. Wingnuts are impervious to facts on this subject much like others, I remember arguing and arguing over that UN study and how Americans spend the most while receiving the worst outcomes in the Western world and hearing “UN socialized medicine hurr hurr hurr”. They also argue that they don’t deserve insurance if they can’t afford it…and these are the people who want healthcare back under their pasty, liver spotted and bony hands.

    Dumbfucks

    • laineypc

      Ideology over outcomes!

  • kindness

    Well in truth if those who support this lawsuit to overturn the ACA can use the ‘Moops invaded Spain’ line of attack and expect it to be taken seriously, you’d think those defending this law could use the ‘Look, these people are using the Underpants Gnomes argument’.

  • Spork

    Selling insurance across state lines and tort reform. It’s always selling insurance across state lines and tort reform with them. Republicans may be acting all mysterious about their solution but it inevitably turns out to be selling insurance across state lines and tort reform.

    • Reddishrabbit

      I’ve always wondered about that across state line thing. If I live in NYC but buy a policy from West Virginia won’t all the doctors in network be in WV? And since the reasonable plans do not cover out of network wouldn’t I have to travel to WV for every test and appointment?
      And tort reform? Excuse me while I die laughing as they sue Obama.

      • david green

        It won’t matter, because the out-of-state insurance you get cheap will be regulated by the laws of that state. And you will discover just what an “activist” Insurance Commission in WV is. Think King Log.

  • Msgr_Moment

    Sounds legit. I mean, Alexander’s the guy that got rid of the Cabinet-level Education Department, right?

  • mtn_philosoph

    Republicans in Congress cannot come up with a credible alternative to the ACA for the simple reason that they never thought there was anything wrong with the old system. Anything they propose now is purely for appearance. There is absolutely no push for the “replace” part of “repeal and replace.” Anything that they have talked about has always been very sketchy and lacking in detail or even logical consistency. Their “plan” has been and will always be merely a rhetorical device whose sole purpose is to allow them to claim that they have an alternative. The Democrats put the ACA legislation together in just over a year. The Republicans have had six years to develop their so-called “alternative” and yet they still have nothing concrete to present to the American people. The absence is indicative of the GOP’s total lack of interest in making healthcare more affordable and accessible.

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