Trump to GOP: Be careful about owning health care, because ObamaCare will collapse under its own weight

Headshot image of Dan Calabrese
Published by: Dan Calabrese on Thursday January 05th, 2017

What?

I think what he means is that Republicans have to take care that their replacement for ObamaCare doesn't become the Democrats' excuse for the inevitable failure. In other words, don't be so abrupt in how you change the status quo that you simply swap an already-coming disaster for a different one that can be pinned on you.

Right. I think that's what he means:

Trump posted the above around noon yesterday, and some interpreted it to mean Trump was backing away from repeal-and-replace, preferring to simply let ObamaCare fail and then pick up the pieces later on. But that theory was hard to square with this post, which came about five hours later:

Here's what I think is going on:

The Republicans know they have to go slow on the transition from ObamaCare to whatever the new plan will be. People have bought ObamaCare plans and are dependent on the subsidies. People's old plans have disappeared, and their old doctors are no longer in their now-narrowed networks. (Thanks, Obama!) There's no doubt that the transition will be messy for some people, if only because we're talking about people who never arranged for health insurance via the private market before now, and will struggle to move to it for the first time in their lives.

Black Lives Matter leader hit with restraining order after threatening LA police official

Trump doesn't want to see the Republicans force-feed a ham-handed, rip-off-the-bandage approach that throws people's lives in to chaos and gives Schumer et al the opportunity to say See? See? None of this was happening before the Republicans messed with ObamaCare!

Of course, far worse things were happening. The insurance market has been collapsing, people's premiums are going through the roof and the quality of their care has been seriously compromised. I don't think Trump wants to just do nothing and let the collapse cycle through to its completion. I think, rather, he wants the Republican replacement to focus on being ready to pick up the pieces when it needs to happen. Given the need for insurers to develop new plans and for providers to become familiar with them, you're probably looking at no less than a year or so before people can transition anyway. So don't plant a bomb and blow up everything on day one. That's not necessary. It's collapsing on its own so you don't have to kill it.

What you have to do is make it as easy as possible on the other end for the people who need help to find it, accessibly and affordably, without all the economic insanity that doomed ObamaCare in the first place.

I think that's what he means. I hope that's what he means. Because if it's not, I have no idea, and that makes me a little terrified.

Dan's new novel, BACKSTOP, is a story of spiritual warfare and baseball. Download it from Amazon here!