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Monday, 06 March 2017 08:28
GOP breaking promises on repealing Obamacare with no plan
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Health reformIn early 2009, conservative activists starting meeting across the country to express their opposition to the liberal agenda of President Obama and organize the first Tea Party meetings. Activists were most concerned about the biggest component of the President's agenda: the socialized healthcare plan formally known as the Affordable Care Act, but, in actuality, referred to as Obamacare.

At that time, almost every Republican congressman or candidate for U.S. Congress that appeared at a Tea Party event promised to fight back against Obamacare if it was enacted.

Unfortunately, one year later, on March 23, 2010, Obamacare was signed into law by President Obama. Thus, Republican Party leaders have been promising to repeal and replace Obamacare since 2009. Voters have received eight years of GOP promises and now it is high time for action.

When Americans became disgusted with Obama's big government plans, they helped elect a GOP Congress in 2010. Republicans said they could not implement the changes they needed with control of only one house in Congress. So, voters delivered the Senate to the GOP in 2014.
Then, Republicans claimed that they could not finalize a replacement plan or fight the overall Obama agenda without a Republican President. So, in 2016, the American people delivered a GOP President, Donald Trump.

Today, there should be no more excuses, but, incredibly, after eight long years, Republicans have not agreed on a replacement plan. In fact, GOP congressional leaders are still meeting in secret to decide on the details. Last week, U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) was prevented from seeing this plan and shut out of a secret House leadership meeting.

This drama is ridiculous and shows the failure of House GOP leadership to reach consensus on a repeal and replacement of Obamacare. Many conservatives worry that the final replacement plan will amount to little more than “Obamacare lite.” In fact, one plan being proposed by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) would allow states to keep Obamacare if they wanted.

The problem is that Republicans were not elected on a platform to keep Obamacare. GOP voters were vocal in the distaste of a plan that was sold as a lie. In fact, polls have consistently shown that a majority of Americans want to replace a plan that has led to higher premiums and deductibles, fewer insurance choices and an individual mandate that force millions of American to buy a product they do not want.

Clearly, Republicans in Congress were elected in November to work with President Trump and enact changes such as repealing Obamacare. While the President has delivered with strong executive orders and excellent cabinet appointments, the GOP Congress has been a major disappointment.

Along with no consensus Obamacare replacement plan, there is not a consensus tax cut plan and there are still Trump cabinet appointments that have not been confirmed. All of this should not be a surprise because the Republican Party's track record is very poor.

The last time the GOP had control of both the White House and Congress was between 2003 and 2007. During that time, President George W. Bush and Congress used their power not to limit government, but to expand government.

In that period, the federal debt exploded, government entitlement programs were expanded and no significant spending limits were enacted. During the Bush years, the country embarked on a “war on terrorism” in multiple countries that eventually cost taxpayers over $6 trillion. The end result was that almost 7,000 American lives were lost and almost 1 million American heroes were wounded. Sadly, after 15+ years of military involvement, Afghanistan and Iraq are still war zones with a strong presence of terrorist activity.

The GOP failures during the Bush years contributed to the victory of the most liberal President of all-time, Barack Obama. This time, Republicans need to deliver on their mandate or they will be sent packing by the American people once again.

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Jeff Crouere

Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at Ringside Politics.

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