Addressing the Healthcare Repeal Effort: Who is Speaking for the Voiceless?
Now that the mid-term elections are over and time for campaign promises to become Congressional platforms, the battle lines are drawn regarding the fight over healthcare repeal for the package known as “Obamacare.”
Republicans, particularly those endorsed under the Tea Party banner, are working hard to make good on what seems to have become their singular promise directed towards healthcare repeal due to their premise of its exorbitant expense on already beleaguered taxpayers. The House passed a repeal of “Obamacare” yesterday but the bill likely has no change of passing in the Senate.
The Democrats dispute this viewpoint and highlight many components of the bill that the estimated 30 million uninsured Americans like about healthcare reform.
With the majority of articles and editorials following one side of the discussion and reinforcing the strident cries of those outside the issue, there are a few voices who are speaking for the voiceless, uninsured who have been without the hope of healthcare due to pre-existing conditions that ruled them out or working for themselves and not having the funds or connections to qualify.
Healthcare repeal is a larger issue than a political slogan and it should not be bandied about for political gain and media spotlight because it directly impacts lives.
A major concern by the uninsured who are just starting to utilize the advantages of “Obamacare” is the lack of a replacement plan. While Republicans can toss figures around regarding the impact of “Obamacare” on the deficit, even if they are able to repeal it, they have no comprehensive plan to replace it.
In The Associated Press article entitled, “Republicans vow to repeal ‘Obamacare,’” Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar wrote, “Repeal and replace worked as a campaign slogan to motivate voters concerned about the growing reach of government under Obama. But a single-minded focus on repeal could backfire as a Republican governing strategy.
“Polls show that some parts of the law are popular, and many Americans would have wanted even bigger changes.” He further states what opponents against the healthcare repeal are requesting from this same delegation. He wrote, “Other supporters of the healthcare law have launched a ‘drop it or stop it’ campaign, challenging Republicans who vote to repeal the overhaul to also give up the government-funded health insurance provided to members of Congress.”
Any healthcare package will have a negative impact on the deficit, so it is vital to tell the full story about the much needed effort for reform and the impact of the healthcare repeal.
Among the many provisions of “Obamacare,” the increased funding to community clinics is one that speaks directly to communities of color who frequent local clinics in larger number than major hospitals.
Also, the Medicare and Social Security trusts released a report that due to “Obamacare,” Medicare funds would last longer. According to MoneyNews.com, “The annual checkup of the government’s big benefit programs for the elderly show that the Obama administration’s sweeping healthcare overhaul will extend the life of the Medicare hospital insurance fund by 12 years.”
The uninsured, senior citizens and minorities are among a number of voiceless participants in this healthcare repeal scenario, however, there is another group who will bear the brunt of the decisions made by the newly elected Congress – the young people.
Whether it is “Obamacare” or in the highly unlikely scenario of “repeal and replace” especially when there is no replacement plan; the young people will be the ones who have to pay the price.
According to site Young Real Politiks, they have their own opinions about the battle shaping up on Washington, D.C. As Ryan, in his piece, “Repeal Obamacare? Stop Wasting Our Time” writes “In order to appease the Tea Party elements of the Republican Party, newly elected GOP congressmen and women are desperate to show their ‘conservative credentials.’ So we have a ceremonially reading of the Constitution and a doomed repeal of “Obamacare” planned. Instead of economic development and budget balancing legislation. Instead of education reform. Instead of looking forward at leaving Iraq and Afghanistan.” Out of the mouths of the next generation comes the wisdom of the ages. The more important question – are any of the newly elected officials listening? If not, 2012 is right around the corner.
Mereday is a contributing writer for Regal Black Men’s Magazine, a publication dedicated to the African American community.
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