Yesterday’s newspaper had this headline: “Alexander reaches across the aisle.” Subhed: “Senator to hold bipartisan hearings on health care.”
Alexander has been discussed here previously in connection with this wanting to bail out the insurance companies as his answer to solving the Obamacare problem.
Somehow attaching “bipartisan” to his efforts makes him into a hero. The USA today reporter quotes him, “…I think it makes much more sense to go step by step especially since the last seven years have been so partisan. If we can agree on a single, limited bipartisan step in September..then we could take second steps, and there are obvious steps.”
He goes on to say that he preferred a repeal. Really? Interesting because on July 26 he voted against the straight repeal of Obamacare. Too bad Ms. Fletcher didn’t remind him of that.
She did ask him about selling the plan. “Have you had any discussions with HHS Secretary Tom Price or others about advertising and campaigning for open enrollment?” Alexander replied, “No, I haven’t.” That’s flabberghasting on the reporter’s part because the Obama people wasted a lot of money on that effort with paltry response. How much taxpayer money should be allowed to be frittered away?
Alexander added, “I think the major uncertainty that Congress can deal with is whether there will be cost sharing reduction payments in 2018 and whether Sect. 1332 will set up a waiver system so Alaska, New York, Tennessee and Texas can have choices of insurance policies that fits those different states.”
He continued, “What Alaska was able to do with the Sect. 1332 waiver that was just approved is to take some of the money that comes from the federal government to Alaska to pay for Obamacare subsidies and move it to reinsurance. When they did that they took care of the very sickest people in Alaska and were able to reduce premiums for everybody else by about 20%.”
Except that’s again not true. The reporter put a note in parentheses that Alaska has had the highest premiums on the federally run exchange. Of course, she didn’t challenge him on this in the interview.
As I wrote earlier, Alexander tries to mask his plan as holding down costs for Americans, but in reality it means unsustainable subsidies to insurance companies. He talks about giving money back to the states as a way to weasel out of government control, but that takes a lot of money and still gives it to another part of government control.
In September look for Alexander to get a lot of play with his bipartisan outreach. Bipartisan in this case just means more officials feeding at the lobbyist and government trough. It means attention lavished on him by the Left wing media.
But it’s not what we wanted and it’s not what got President Trump elected. Why should Alexander care, however?