I’m a little fuzzy on the future of the ACA. The Post Star recently reported that Rep. Stefanik wants to replace it over a period of 3 years. Yet, she voted for a budget bill enabling it to be repealed without a replacement. Kudos to Rep. Katko who voted nay because there is no successor in sight. Oh wait, President Trump just said it’s “very much formulated down to the final strokes.” That’s less than reassuring. Rep. Ryan and Senator McConnell “expect to put legislation repealing and partially replacing the law by the end of March.” I wonder if the health insurance industry has the same queasy feeling I do over that word “partially.” Fix ACA, embrace single-payer or face the wrath of voters in 2 years. Those are the choices.
Another puzzler involves the Great Wall. Rep. Ryan is pushing the idea of the wall as infrastructure. The wall is unnecessary. By definition it is not infrastructure. Rep. Hurd whose district shares 800 miles of border with Mexico: “Building a wall is the most expensive and least effective way to secure the border.” Is this being pushed solely to fulfill a Trump campaign promise? Another was that Mexico would pay for it. They seem pretty adamant they’re not and will likely not pay interest if taxpayers or consumers in this country front the money.
One last matter, since the hugest inauguration ever, that has me thinking my drink was spiked. The president is listening to a conspiracy theorist, Gregg Phillips, who tells him 5 million people voted illegally. And he tweets in support of this nonsense. The CIA tells him the Russians interfered in the election and he scoffs at that and compares them to Nazis. The next 4 years are going be a long, strange trip.
Here's a bit of info on Gregg Phillips.
Perhaps Trump shouldn’t be so quick to believe Phillips, who has twice served in state government—once in Mississippi, once in Texas—and twice been accused of rewarding his associates, including a government document denouncing him for “facilitating an erosion of the public trust.”
Phillips is currently unable to do business with the state of Texas, according to Kevin Lyons, a spokesman for the Texas Comptroller. He told The Daily Beast on Friday that Phillips had failed to file the required paperwork this year and his right to transact business was forfeited on Sept. 23, 2016. The Guardian also reported on Friday that he owes more than $100,000 in unpaid taxes. Phillips has never been charged with any crimes.
Yes, he's a first-class swamp critter.