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Republican Policies Costlier

Medicare Part-D

Image by dumbeast via Flickr

Suzie Madrak posted a revealing item on the Crooks & Liars blog.

Back in the Bush years the Republicans, in an attempt to assuage the fury of the AARP crowd, passed a prescription drug plan addition to Medicare.

Medicare Part D was designed by GOP lawmakers to prevent the federal government from negotiating drug prices with pharmaceutical companies. The results were predictable.

Madrak cites a report from 2009 by Citizens for Tax Justice that compares Obamacare with the Bush fiasco. The title says it all:

The Bush Tax Cut Cost Two and a Half Times as much as the Democrats Health Care Proposal

In terms of serious proposals to rein in health care costs and provide coverage for those who cannot afford it, the Republicans come up empty.

They simply don’t care about the issue.

The GOP prescription drug plan had a number of other problems, including the famous “donut hole” gap in coverage. The gap was included for one cynical reason: to hide the true cost of the plan and make the Republicans look fiscally responsible.

Obama’s health care plan has stepped in to fix that debacle.

The only policy proposal they continue to flog is tort reform, which study after study has shown does absolutely nothing to bring costs down.

In fact, what tort reform does is bar regular people from recovering from actual negligent doctors. So much for Republican support for working Americans.

A 2009 article by Washington Independent writer Daphne Eviatar contains this passage regarding medical malpractice law reform from someone who has actually studied the issue:

“It’s really just a distraction,” said Tom Baker, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and author of “The Medical Malpractice Myth.” “If you were to eliminate medical malpractice liability, even forgetting the negative consequences that would have for safety, accountability, and responsiveness, maybe we’d be talking about 1.5 percent of health care costs. So we’re not talking about real money. It’s small relative to the out-of-control cost of health care.”

One might suspect that the actual Republican agenda in this case is punishing  trial lawyers, who mostly donate to Democrats.

On issue after issue, Republicans show a distinct pattern to their policymaking — welfare and tax breaks for the wealthy, nothing for the poor and middle class.

And when conservatives make policy, it’s costlier and less effective.

-Chris

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September 15, 2010 - Posted by | Democrats, Health Care, Politics, Republicans | , , , , , , , , ,

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