Boozman listed as resisting GOP's Senate health bill | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Boozman listed as resisting GOP's Senate health bill

Posted By on Sun, Jul 9, 2017 at 8:21 AM

click to enlarge DR. NO: John Boozman viewed as obstacle to GOP health care bill as written.
  • DR. NO: John Boozman viewed as obstacle to GOP health care bill as written.
The New York Times, in reporting on eroding Republican support in the Senate for a bill rewriting the Affordable Care Act, indicates U.S. Sen. John Boozman of Arkansas is among apparent obstacles to passage.

With Congress set to return on Monday after a week’s recess, Republican lawmakers are increasingly aware that their seven-year promise to dismantle President Barack Obama’s largest policy achievement is deeply imperiled. Senator John Hoeven, Republican of North Dakota, signaled this week that he would not vote for the bill as written, following negative remarks from other senators with large poor and rural populations. That was the 10th defection.

Three other Republican senators, Bob Corker of Tennessee, Charles E. Grassley of Iowa and John Boozman of Arkansas, have withheld their support, although they have not declared their opposition, and others have largely remained silent.
As written, the bill would be devastating to Arkansas, both in a loss of coverage for tens of thousands of Arkansan and in a body blow to the state budget of a Boozman political ally, Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson. Boozman also is an optometrist by trade, so might have some feeling for what loss of the money would mean to the health care industry.

Tall-talking Tom Cotton, normally front and center on any and all issues foreign and domestic, remains incommunicado on the health bill.

After seven years of bellyaching, it would appear Republicans are finally realizing that talk is cheap and pain to real people might mean something. As the Times notes:

In small counties, rural hospitals and other health care providers are often the largest employers, and after years of railing against Mr. Obama’s law, Republican senators are now grappling with the impact of its possible demise.
Yup. And thus we have an Arkansas governor desperately trying to hang onto one of the biggest expansions of government services ever, though putting cosmetic gloss on it by attempting to cut 60,000 working poor off coverage and establishing some work rules so that only the truly "deserving" get help.

In a country whose preamble spoke directly of promoting the general welfare of its people, I"d think all deserving of health care as much as fire and police protection, public education and good highways.

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