Supposed “Freedom Caucus” Set to Object to Obamacare Repeal Without a Replacement

Conservative.  Liberal.  What exactly do those terms mean?  Ask several individuals and each would probably have a different answer.  In reality, there are only two types of individuals — constitutionalist or anti-constitutionalists.  In other words, you either support the Constitution or you don’t.  In declaring support for the Constitution, one must support all of the Constitution, not pick and choose  what to support, what to throw out, and shift it around when it suits one’s purpose.

The Freedom Caucus, consisting of 40 “ultra-conservative” members of the House of Representatives, met in the basement of a Capitol Hill Tex-Mex restaurant on Monday night to discuss their Obamacare strategy, according to McClatchyDC.  “Chair of the ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus U.S. Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., said there was “overwhelming consensus” among members that the budget measure – still under debate in the Senate – doesn’t yet offer enough specifics about how Republicans plan to overhaul Obamacare and the timing of when a replacement law would roll out.”  Meadows stated no votes were taken by the caucus at that time.According to McClatchyDC:

“No official positions at this point, other than we believe any (budget) reconciliation – repeal and replacement – needs to happen in the 115th Congress,” said Meadows, who is from western North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District.

He and other Republican lawmakers who left Monday night’s Freedom Caucus huddle said they want more specifics about what will replace Obamacare and how long it will take to implement the new law.

The caucus, Meadows said, will ask House Republican leaders to “slow down the process” of getting the budget resolution – known as a budget reconciliation measure – to the floor for a vote. In the Senate, Kentucky’s Sen. Rand Paul was the only Republican to oppose the chamber moving forward on debate on the resolution.

Last week, Paul met with Freedom Caucus members and asked for their support in the House to block the measure – which some, including U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., on Monday, have called merely a “vehicle” for repealing Obamacare and laying out other spending details but not a “real budget.”

Sanford told reporters Monday he was still unsure how he’d vote on the budget resolution but said it presents an immediate opportunity to get rid of Obamacare. 

“This is the only train leaving the station for a repeal of Obamacare,” Sanford said.

But, this should not be the only option for the repeal of Obamacare, which Meadows  stated as well.  However, Meadows, as the head of the Freedom Caucus, suggests the group would not support a repeal of Obamacare unless there was a specific plan Republicans developed to put in place of Obamacare.  His rationale is why repeal it if there are no specifics on what you are going to do.

A group calling themselves the “Freedom Caucus” and described as “ultra-conservative” can only see a repeal and replace option — nothing else.  None can even fathom the term “unconstitutional” as it relates to Obamacare or any replacement Republicans establish, if that replacement still involves federal government control over health care insurance and health care.  This group needs to change their name and publications need to stop referring to the group as “ultra-conservative.”

Why not return health care insurance back to the private sector as it was before Obamacare?  Can it not be done because the government, in its infinite stupidity, totally decimated the private sector health care insurance industry to the point it is unrecoverable?  These are questions that both chambers of Congress need to answer in order to provide full disclosure to the people.  No one had access to full disclosure on Obamacare, which left many seriously angry over the process.  Republicans would do well not to make the same mistake as Democrats.

And, Obamacare is now tied to the budget and a budget reconciliation.  All those assessed penalties against individuals who did not buy into Obamacare have now been stirred into the budget, being spent at the discretion of whomever can get their hands on it.  Money and control are two things the federal government doesn’t give up easily.

Republicans would do well to remember their oath to support, defend and protect the Constitution for the united States of America.  For, in the battle in legislation, the question each must ask is, “Does this piece of legislation fall within the authority vested in Congress?”  If the answer is no, then it should not pass.  One should not look to twist, bend, or convolute tenets in the Constitution to support legislation clearly unconstitutional, as the dreaded Obamacare.

Whether Republican or Democrat doesn’t matter.  Either one is a constitutionalist or an anti-constitutionalist.  To have a group of House members call themselves the “Freedom Caucus” who then turn around and vote for measures that hinder freedom is an oxymoron and in no way identifies this group has standing for freedom or being “ultra-conservative.”  And, if the concern is “leaving individuals without health care insurance,” none of the members of Congress, both chambers even, worried about that before the Democrat federal government takeover of the health care insurance industry.  But, their concern is budget, mainly.

Money coming into the federal government is money they have to continue to misspend.

Other options are available to Congress to rid the republic of government controlled health care insurance, if they would only be willing to entertain the idea.  It is a power Congress already possesses that could see more individuals able to afford health care insurance.

Congress has the power to regulate interstate commerce, meaning the body could relax regulations to make health care insurance available across State lines and to function in a manner similar to automobile insurance. By using a true cafeteria model, whereby consumers choose portions of health care insurance needed in addition to catastrophic coverage, determine their deductible from a pre-established parameter, and allowing increased competition between insurance companies providing health care insurance, consumers would be able to have a health care insurance plan that is affordable, acceptable, and truly useable no matter where in the nation they reside or travel. Moreover, being that most health care insurance companies already provide services in all States, these companies would need to tap into their existing networks to create a nationwide network instead of the current State-by-State models.

It would mean the coverage for catastrophic care could be used nationwide in the event of an emergency when one is outside the State network, while maintaining an area network for primary care physicians.

Even trying to push health care insurance back onto the State governments would not be a welcome solution since it would still mean some form of government control exerted in the health care insurance industry and health care overall.

This would satisfy the Constitutional requirements by using authority under the Congress to invoke the provisions under the Tenth Amendment, whereby powers not authorized the federal government are reserved to the States or the people.  No penalties (tax, if preferred) should be assessed for any individual who chooses not to obtain health care insurance as that should be a personal choice based on situation.  The mandate to purchase health care insurance by the federal government is unconstitutional as the government is given no authority to force individuals to purchase a product or service of any kind.

Moreover, Congress should be trimming the waste in the federal government, instituting fiduciary reform — trimming the corruption in agencies misspending taxpayer funds, and practicing greater fiscal responsibility by reducing “crony” payouts and awards of contracts to campaign donors and those with deep ties to the parties in order to function without the penalties received from Obamacare or any replacement option.  To refuse to entertain all possibilities is negligent, incompetent, and criminal.

In the first few months of the Trump administration, the repeal of Obamacare will be particularly of interest to the American public.  With Republicans already concerned about “budget reconciliation” without a replacement option, one can bet their only choice will be a Republican form of Obamacare to maintain the incoming revenue generated by the unconstitutional and consumer-punishing Obamacare.  Unfortunately, this will leave Americans in the same place they were with Obamacare — government interference and knowledge of private health care information on all Americans.  It is unconstitutional at best;  criminal at worse.  Any group calling themselves the “Freedom Caucus” should know this.

About Suzanne Hamner

Former professional Registered Nurse turned writer; equal opportunity criticizer; politically incorrect conservative;
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