Morgan Griffith's Promises Don't Stand Up To CBO Scrutiny

Congratulations Congressman Griffith. The health plan you extolled in your two town hall meetings—excuse me---letters to the editor, will provide coverage for one million more in than the previous Trumpcare plan. That’s the only good news that comes from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the bean counters that keep an actual score.

Their numbers show that the revised American Health Care Act would still leave 23 million without insurance. A 64-year-old making $26,500 would pay $1,700 in premiums annually under Obamacare. In a state making "moderate" changes to its market under the proposed law, that 64-year-old would pay $13,600, and in a state with no waivers, the cost would be $16,100.

But premiums would fall for those who remain insured, the report said, because policies would offer fewer benefits to those with health issues and healthy people would be the only ones who could afford the insurance. The sickest would not be able to pay the premiums and would drop the coverage.

But hey, you’re okay with that, right Morgan? This dumpster fire helps businesses like those owned by your patrons the Koch brothers, but what about small business, the ones you always tout as the backbone of this country?

"Many solo entrepreneurs would likely be forced out of the insurance market entirely. This means many small firms would close up shop while others would never get off the ground," said John Arensmeyer, founder of Small Business Majority, which represents 55,000 small businesses.

But with the advent of Trump we’ve entered an age where truth, facts, and behavior don’t matter. Consider the election of Greg Gianforte, the one who is charged with assault for body slamming a reporter. Or White House issuance of press credentials to Alex Jones, head of the conspiracy-theory-laden website Infowars. He’s the same reprobate that claimed the Sandy Hook massacre and Alison’s murder were a hoax.

Charlie Sykes, a conservative former talk-show host in Wisconsin and author of the forthcoming “How the Right Lost Its Mind,” said “every time something like Montana happens, Republicans adjust their standards and put an emphasis on team loyalty. They normalize and accept previously unacceptable behavior.”

Trump has fomented this climate, and congressional republicans like Morgan Griffith are glad to assist. Gianforte’s assault on the journalist is no surprise. Griffith can operate secure in the knowledge of precisely who his audiences hate and why they hate them. In 2016, Trump spent a good portion of every campaign rally coming right up to the edge of setting a mob loose on the penned-up press at the back of the hall, so of course Morgan is going to follow suit. Since I’ve been writing pieces for national publications, his office has also actively sought to suppress my criticism directed at him.

But here’s the deal and the truth. Morgan Griffith is lying about what the republican plan to repeal Obamacare would do.

He was lying back in March, when he supported the initial version of the legislation ― a bill GOP leaders had to pull at the last minute because it didn’t have enough votes to pass. And he’s been lying since early May, after his co-conspirators revised that proposal and rushed to vote on it before the CBO, Washington’s official scorekeeper, had time to evaluate it formally.

Morgan’s bill does, however, provide -- by one independent estimate from the Tax Policy Center -- the richest Americans with an average tax cut of $37,000. Health insurance companies would receive a $145 billion tax cut. Investors would see taxes on their capital gains slashed by $158 billion.

Morgan, Paul Ryan, etc. are now fully confident that their intended audience is made up of dupes and fools who've been marinating in Fox News, otherwise known as State Run Media and therefore, will believe anything they are fed. Or worse, they simply don’t care about the truth and sadly, if the election of Gianforte is any barometer, they’re right.

So if all of you Griffith and Trump supporters wake up one day and say, “Dang, what happened my insurance?” or “When are those coal mining jobs comin’ back?” it’s because Morgan and his president lied to you and you believed it. (News flash— Onerous regulations didn’t cripple coal mining as Morgan would have you believe. Natural gas did because it’s abundant and cheap.)

When you find yourself unable to obtain or afford the insurance for you and your family that Morgan and his republican colleagues promised, at least you’ll have the peace of mind knowing Obama and Hillary are not going to come to take away your guns.