After nearly a century of attempts by both political parties to reform the American healthcare system…
After more than a year of debate…
Health Care Insurance Reform will become the law of the land!
A Democratic President and a Democratic Congress made this dream come true.
All Republicans voted against the bill, in unthinking lock-step with commands issued by their Party Overlords.
The House passed the Senate’s version of health care reform by a 219-212 margin, sending it to President Barack Obama for his signature.
Obama said, accurately, shortly before midnight,
This isn’t radical reform, but it is major reform… This is what change looks like.
This Health Insurance Reform offers all Americans greater benefits and more security, while it also enables 32 million additional Americans to obtain health insurance coverage:
- Medicaid eligibility will be expanded, and subsidies provided for low- and moderate-income individuals to purchase private insurance.
- Individuals and small businesses obtain the choice to purchase insurance through new state-based exchanges, which will offer plans meeting minimum federal standards.
- Small businesses with low-wage workers will be eligible for temporary tax credits to help them pay for insurance coverage.
- Individuals will be required to obtain insurance coverage, thus reducing risk and cost per person to the lowest level (the entire concept of how insurance works)
- Businesses that employ more than 50 workers must provide coverage or pay a penalty of $2,000 per worker if any of their employees receives government-subsidized coverage on their own.
- A tax on high-cost insurance plans begins in 2018.
- New corporate taxes will be imposed on insurance industry, medical device manufacturers, and pharmaceutical companies.
- Individuals who make more than $200,000 ($250,000 for families) will pay additional Medicare payroll taxes.
- Insurance companies will no longer be able to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions or rescind coverage when someone gets ill.
- Insurance companies will be prohibited from capping the amount of benefits individuals could receiver over their lifetime.
- Insurance coverage will now be affordable to all Americans and abusive insurance company practices reined in.
- National deficit will be cut by more than $100 billion over the next 10 years and by more than $1 trillion in the next twenty — making this the largest deficit reduction in more than a decade.
Republicans, however, continue to manipulate the issue and their constituents with fear and lies.
Repugnicans also called into question the Senate’s ability to pass a separate bill fixing the House’s problems with the Senate’s health care reform legislation. To avoid the need to get 60 votes in the Senate, Democrats decided to have the House vote on the Senate-passed bill, and then approve a package of fixes through a budget-related process known as reconciliation, which only requires 51 votes to clear the Senate.
The problem, according to Republicans, is that the reconciliation bill would generate additional contributions to the Social Security Trust Fund, and changes to Social Security aren’t eligible for consideration in a reconciliation bill.
Well, if that’s how they want to play it, fine… Repugnicans will ensure that THEIR deficits from financing two immoral and unnecessary wars will simply not be reduced as much as planned, leaving their children and grandchildren to pay for their follies. We’ll teach them who’s at fault.
The Republican argument didn’t sway any Democratic House members, anyway. The House passed the reconciliation bill by a 220-211 margin.
Let’s enjoy this victory! We have effected good policy that empowers all Americans, lowers our budget deficit, and more importantly, provides life and health for us all to pursue the opportunity of happiness this nation purports to grant citizens.