In an interview Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) admitted that the Republican plan is to win the Senate then begin work on taking health care away from the estimated 10.3 million people who have gotten coverage thanks to the ACA.
Earlier in the interview, Ryan discussed how much easier it will be to pass legislation if Republicans win the Senate. The real tell of what Republicans have in mind came when the conversation turned to Obamacare.
Rep. Ryan said,
It is so fundamentally flawed in it’s basic architecture that we shouldn’t to mimic it. I believe that a smart system that is patient centered that equalizes the tax treatment of Obamacare will give everybody, the ability the option to go get affordable health insurance. Whether they choose to do that or not is not really something you can necessarily actually capture in scoring, but if you have a system that gives everybody access to affordable care in a free market system that is patient centered included people with preexisting conditions, things like risk pools, then I believe that is suffient.
I’d go back to the pre-Obamacare baseline is what I would do. I think that’s the way to go. We shouldn’t assume we’re going to have an explosive entitlement then replace it with our own. I would start over again, quite frankly.
What Ryan was suggesting is that if Republicans take control of the Senate, they are going to begin the process of repealing Obamacare. The real target date that Republicans have in mind is 2017. If Republicans control Congress and win the presidency, they will be able to repeal the ACA and replace it with a voucher system.
When Rep. Ryan talks about patient based solutions and equalizing the tax treatment what he means is that Republicans want to repeal Obamacare and replace it with a flat rate tax credit or voucher for health insurance. Paul Ryan wants to go back to the old system with the bonus of millions of dollars in taxpayer money for the insurance companies.
Ryan wants to replace the ACA and Medicare/Medicaid with health vouchers. It doesn’t matter to Republicans that millions of people have access to affordable healthcare that they didn’t have before. It doesn’t matter that the ACA is working. The Republican position is all about destroying a law that helps people while providing a huge gift to the insurance industry.
The Senate elections matter. If Republicans take the Senate, they will be two-thirds of the way towards their goal of denying millions of people healthcare. A Republican victory in November will be another step towards returning to the bad old days of the recent past.