Follow the money (health care version)

A million things to say about health care this week, but it’s been really busy, so I’ve stuck to writing a dozen blog posts in my head, rather than on the computer.  Among the angles I’ve loved is how much smarter Jimmy Kimmel is on health care policy than your typical Republican Senator.  Now, one thing that political neophytes too readily do is blame everything on the money, e.g., Kimmel here:

“Listen: Health care is complicated,” he said. “It’s boring. I don’t want to talk about it. The details are confusing — and that’s what these guys are relying on. They’re counting on you to be so overwhelmed with all the information [that] you just trust them to take care of it. Well, they’re not taking care of you. They’re taking care of the people who give them money.”

But, here’s the thing.  Kimmel is absolutely right.  This bill is 1) clearly, a policy disaster.  Few Republicans even try and defend it on the merits; and, 2) absurdly unpopular.  So, why push and push?  Follow the money:

WASHINGTON — As more than 40 subdued Republican senators lunched on Chick-fil-A at a closed-door session last week, Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado painted a dire picture for his colleagues. Campaign fund-raising was drying up, he said, because of the widespread disappointment among donors over the inability of the Republican Senate to repeal the Affordable Care Act or do much of anything else.

Mr. Gardner is in charge of his party’s midterm re-election push, and he warned that donors of all stripes were refusing to contribute another penny until the struggling majority produced some concrete results.

“Donors are furious,” one person knowledgeable about the private meeting quoted Mr. Gardner as saying. “We haven’t kept our promise.”

The backlash from big donors as well as the grass roots has panicked Senate Republicans and is part of the motivation behind the sudden zeal to take one last crack at repealing the health care law before the end of the month.

Well, there you go.  When the rich guys say “jump,” politicians (especially Republican ones), say “how high?”

Also, on the policy disaster front, this Upshot piece from Margot Sanger-Katz has stuck with me.  The title gets it, “The G.O.P. Bill Forces States to Build Health Systems From Scratch. That’s Hard.”  And “hard” is an understatement.  And, if you want more details on why it’s so bad, Ezra, of course, takes care of that.

Of course, I’ll not believe this is dead dead until October 1, but, as I’ve said before, the fact that the GOP is anywhere close to passing such shockingly horrible legislation really tells you all you need to know (okay, just a lot, doesn’t really hit white ethnocentrism) about the modern Republican party.  Oh, also, don’t want to forget– the lies, my God, the lies.

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