Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Planned Parenthood Support Much Bigger Than Trump Support In Key GOP-Held Districts


Polling for the runoff in the GA-06 race to replace Tom Price is very tight-- incredible for such a red district-- and Jon Ossoff is slightly ahead of radical right Republican Karen Handel-- 48-47%. Republican outside groups-- primarily the NRCC, the Chamber of Commerce and Ryan's shady, corporately-financed SuperPAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund have already spent over $7 million tearing Ossoff down and trying to bolster Handel. Friday Trump was in Atlanta raising $750,000 for Handel's campaign.

I don't think the new PPP surveys have been made public, but they conducted polls in 13 Republican-held districts for Planned Parenthood, all districts where Trump did poorly, 12 of which he lost to Clinton (all but NY-19, where he won narrowly):
AZ-02 (McSally) 44.7%
CA-21 (Valadao) 39.7%
CA-49 (Issa) 43.2%
CO-06 (Coffman) 41.3%
FL-26 (Curbelo) 40.6%
FL-27 (Ros-Lehtinen) 38.9%
IL-06 (Roskam) 43.2%
KS-03 (Yoder) 46.0%
MN-03 (Paulsen) 41.4%
NJ-07 (Lance) 47.5%
NY-19 (Faso) 50.8%
PA-07 (Meehan) 47.0%
VA-10 (Comstock) 42.2%
Taken as a whole, the voters in the 13 districts-- remember all represented by Republicans-- oppose defunding Planned Parenthood-- 59% to 35%. The poll also shows that the majority of voters in those districts support ObamaCare, 53% to 36%. TrumpCare includes a provision to defund Planned Parenthood. PPP's director, Tom Jensen: "These results make it clear that targeting Planned Parenthood-- or trying to replace the Affordable Care Act with the American Health Care Act more generally-- is politically perilous for these swing district Republican members of Congress. Voters in these districts like Planned Parenthood, they like the Affordable Care Act, and efforts to hurt those things will imperil the Republicans in these districts as they look toward reelection next year."

Furthermore 54% of respondents said that they're less likely to vote for their Republican congressman if they vote to defund Planned Parenthood, compared to 30% who said they would be more likely to support them. Planned Parenthood plans to target Curbelo, Meehan, McSally, Issa, Coffman and Roskam with a TV ad campaign.

Mary Ellen Balchunis is the progressive Democrat who ran against Pat Meehan in 2016. The DCCC didn’t just not support her (in a district Hillary won); they actually sabotaged her campaign after she beat their preferred Wall Street-friendly candidate in a primary— a primary she won with 74% of the vote, despite the DCCC spending $200,000 to bolster her opponent. With Steve Israel finally gone, perhaps the DCCC won’t try screwing her over again in 2018, when she is once again likely to run against Meehan. We checked in with her today about his TrumpCare shenanigans. “In the first vote in committee, Congressman Meehan voted with Trump to defund Planned Parenthood, push what amounted to an Elderly Tax, and drop protections for patients with pre-existing conditions. I helped Planned Parenthood organize a ‘Pop-up Rally’ outside his district office before the vote was pulled. Meehan refused to say how he would vote. It wasn't until AFTER it was pulled that he said he wouldn't have voted for it. He is a Master Politician! He was campaign manager to Sen. Arlen Specter and Sen. Rick Santorum; and, of course, he was the master-mind in the drawing of PA-07 congressional district, considered the ‘poster child for gerrymandering.’ America Votes has said it is the ‘worst’ gerrymandered district in the nation. It is not surprising that Meehan is now saying that he will not vote to defund Planned Parenthood, now that the polls are showing that there is not support to defund. He is not a friend of Planned Parenthood or the many low income women who use the services. I don't trust him; Meehan, or as I say MEANhan, has been voting with Trump 92.2% of the time.”

And today's last minute development: another House Republican leadership scam. Greg Sargent hit the nail on the head:
With multiple media reports suggesting that the drive to repeal Obamacare may be on life-support, House Republicans are rolling out a last-ditch effort to salvage their repeal-and-replace bill before support for it collapses once again. They plan to introduce a new amendment that is designed to give moderates a way to pretend that the GOP bill won’t harm people with preexisting conditions-- and thus, a way to support the bill in the numbers needed to pass it.

In reality, the new amendment is unlikely to insulate moderate and vulnerable Republicans from potent political attacks if they do support the bill, since it will be pretty much just as cruel in human terms-- on multiple levels-- as the current one is. Unfortunately, with moderates under all kinds of other pressures to support the bill, the possibility of this working with just enough of them can’t be ruled out.

The new amendment, which is being championed by Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.)-- who made a huge splash by opposing the bill yesterday-- would essentially add $8 billion of funding in addition to the so-called high-risk pools, which are supposed to function as a safety net for people with preexisting conditions who lose coverage as a result of the GOP bill. The Republican plan would gut protections for people with preexisting ailments, because it would allow states to waive the prohibition on insurers from jacking up premiums for them-- a prohibition that’s called “community rating”-- which could lead to soaring costs and many of them getting priced out of the market entirely.

This is a major reason that so many moderates oppose the GOP bill. Even though the bill also requires states that waive those protections to set up some sort of mechanism for people with preexisting conditions-- such as high-risk pools-- history has shown that they are traditionally underfunded, hit sick people with massive premiums (since only sick people are in the risk pools), and, as a result, leave many uncovered.

Thus the new $8 billion amendment. The Associated Press reports that this $8 billion would be allotted to helping some of those people cover some of those costs so that fewer go without coverage. But as the AP notes, the sum is a paltry addition relative to what is currently in the bill, and that sum is already being derided as woefully inadequate-- so it’s hard to see how this $8 billion changes much.

...And let’s not forget the crucial larger context here. Though the discussion is heavily focused on preexisting conditions, the GOP bill would also cut $800 billion in spending on Medicaid, which could leave 14 million fewer people covered by that program, even as it delivers an enormous tax cut to the rich. So, even with this amendment-- which itself would probably do little to mitigate the harm to people with preexisting conditions-- the bill is still a massively regressive rollback of the ACA’s historic expansion of coverage. Many GOP moderates who opposed the first and most recent version of the bill cited this, too, as a crucial reason for opposing it. So it’s hard to see why this amendment should make a difference, in moral and substantive terms.

Of course, many of these moderates are probably looking for some way to get to Yes, and some may grab on to any kind of “change” to pretend that the bill’s cruel and regressive dimensions have somehow been mitigated. But if so, this could still constitute an enormous political risk. According to the New York Times’ whip count, a large number of House Republicans who currently oppose the GOP bill or are undecided are either moderates, or come from districts won by Hillary Clinton, or both. It’s very hard to see how this $8 billion addition will somehow insulate them from attacks, since the bill still guts protections for people with preexisting conditions and rolls back health coverage for millions and millions of poor people.
Key to understanding the politics here: Meadows and his vehemently anti-healthcare Freedom Caucus refused to vote for the bill unless it allowed insurance companies to charge whatever they like to cover people with pre-existing conditions. By agreeing to Upton's amendment, the Freedom Caucus has signaled that Upton isn't doing anything substantive to interfere with their jihad against healthcare for poor people. Even with Upton's amendment TrumpCare would still gut protections for people with pre-existing conditions and  end coverage for millions of poor people with the express purpose of giving a huge tax cut to multimillionaires and billionaires. And that is always something Fred Upton, hereditary scion of Whirlpool, has been in favor of. It steals $880 billion from Medicaid to further enrich the political donor class. And, according to the CBO, premiums rise by 20%. This is what "mainstream" Republicans are willing to vote for?

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,


At 5:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep observing this, but nobody pays attention.

R voters might be in favor of things that help people out, but will vote for the nazi that wants to kill them (especially if they are nonwhite, nonchristian or female).

There is some kind of psychological defect in americans that makes them halfway decent in their own head but total assholes in the voting booth.

It is true. Has been for decades at least.

D voters have a similar issue, but deniability due to the candidates SAYING they like stuff that helps people until they get elected... and suddenly they hate those same people (but love their donors). D voters stop paying attention once they cast their ballots.

Psychotic Rs vs hap/clueless Ds.


Post a Comment

<< Home