Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Tragic Mass Shooting Will Distract Americans from Republicans’ Staggering Healthcare Cuts

Wednesday’s mass shooting against Republican lawmakers at a baseball practice in Virginia is horrifying and totally intolerable. I sincerely hope that Republican House Majority Whip Steve Scalise will pull through his injuries and be able to return to his work in his elected office. And I equally hope that he will not accomplish the goals of his work. No, it’s not “too soon” to say this, because in the same spirit that Scalise’s life was in jeopardy Wednesday, so too, 23 million Americans‘ lives are potentially in jeopardy if the Republican party hammers out a bill to gut the Affordable Care Act. They have been striving to finally pull the plug on the most significant healthcare reform achievement in our lifetimes, and using big splashy news days in order to make progress on it as secretively as possible. Public details about the bill are scarce. But the process can only lead to the conclusion that it is monstrous. The bill has been described as “…so monumental in its cruelty that they feel they have no choice but to draft it in secret, not let the public know what it does, hold not a single hearing or committee markup, slip it in a brown paper package to the Congressional Budget Office, then push it through to a vote before the July 4th recess before the inevitable backlash gets too loud.” As the Washington Post‘s Dana Milbank bemoaned on Tuesday, the Republican Congressional leadership is using every trick in the legislative book to bypass committees and public deliberation as well as all of the gusts of the Category 5 distraction hurricane that is the Trump presidency, to ram through their extremely unpopular agenda. Because irony is a cruel mistress, Wednesday’s mass shooting postponed a scheduled hearing on a bill to make it easier to buy gun silencers. But of potentially far vaster consequence is the GOP’s tiptoeing toward Trumpcare. According to Milbank,

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