Was it one party or the other?
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Following the derailment of the American Health Care Act last Friday, I listened to the pundits and politicians try to spin the loss by blaming one group or another. As far as I am concerned, this was a loss for all of us.
The Republican Congressional leadership received a black eye for not being able to control their own caucus and secure the passage of the act. Regardless of whether you were pro or con regarding the bill, this was the GOP's one and only chance to repeal and replace Obamacare, and frankly they botched it. This hurt them politically in terms of demonstrating they cannot work together toward some successful end, and it does not bode well for future legislation.
Congressional Democrats tried to portray this as a huge victory. Their efforts were designed to thwart Mr. Trump as opposed to correcting a very serious problem. The reality though is Obamacare is going to implode due to rising rates and deductibles for which the Democrats will surely be blamed. So, they too lost this round as well.
The real loser, of course, is the American people who must continue to pay for a broken health care system, something that is financially burdensome and doesn't serve the needs of the people. Now, we must wait for Obamacare to implode before the Congress will take action. In other words, we have returned to an era of reactionary management.
Surprisingly, the one person coming out of this unscathed appears to be President Trump, the focal point of the Democrats' resistance. If anything, Mr. Trump received an invaluable lesson in terms of how the Washington establishment works, something he will be mindful of as he tackles his next objectives, such as tax reform. If anything, the American public blames the Congress for the stalled action on health care, and not the president.
One thing is for certain, American voters will see this as another sign of gridlock in the nation's capitol, something they surely didn't vote for. Unless the Congress can prove it can function properly and get things done, look for heads to roll in the midterm elections next year, both Republican and Democrat. Maybe it is time to put forth term limit legislation.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a freelance writer and management consultant in the Tampa Bay area of Florida.
For Tim’s columns, see: timbryce.com
Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.