A consensus is emerging on Capitol Hill about the need to fund Obamacare’s cost-sharing subsidies, which help working-class Americans buy health insurance. The question is what fundamental reforms conservatives should get in return.
In my view, they should focus on giving states greater flexibility to design their own health reforms. There’s actually a part of Obamacare that allows states to receive federal money in a lump sum and to waive or revise many of Obamacare’s most noteworthy provisions, including its mandates, the structure and administration of subsidies provided by it and covered benefits . Conservatives should focus on making it easier for states to qualify for these waivers, so we can move away from the one-size-fits-all system that Obamacare created.
We are on the cusp of a rare health care bipartisan agreement. Still, conservatives will (and should) insist on fundamental changes to Obamacare as part of the deal. In so doing, they should aim for an approach that will truly give more states the opportunity to become what Justice Louis Brandeis once called “the laboratories of democracy.”
As Republicans on Capitol Hill struggle to make progress on healthcare and tax reform, the loudest voices in conservative media rip the GOP’s Congressional leadership for their willingness to compromise on drafting legislation.
Actually, Republicans in the House and Senate are doing what they need to do to succeed at their jobs, while conservative commentators in talk radio and syndicated columns do what brings success in their very different roles. Congressional conservatives can achieve nothing without support from moderate Republicans and, ideally, some Democrats, but conservative talkers can maintain ratings dominance by appealing solely to hard-core true believers who make up at most 10 percent of the available audience.
The only way to repair the rift in Republican ranks is for conservative media to alter their strident approach and broaden their base. That process might bring even larger audiences, while helping Congressional colleagues to build the larger coalitions that Constitutional checks and balances require.[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/333229330″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]
Read More »