Once again, Senate Republicans have failed to reach a simple majority for a vote on their vow to repeal and replace Obamacare. They have been promising that the Affordable Care Act would be taken down under Republican control of the federal government, and that has failed once again.
Obamacare was resisted by Republican governors across the country. Here in Louisiana, Bobby Jindal refused to allow Medicaid expansion even though it would help hundreds of thousands of his constituents. When John Bel Edwards became governor, these people finally got access to the Medicaid they so desperately needed with the downturn of the local oil economy.
Louisiana is a prime example of what can go so terribly wrong with conservative control of government, corporate greed, and an economy that relies solely on one industry. So many people who once pulled in big paychecks through the oilfield are now unemployed, or desperately seeking work in some other industry to make ends meet. I know of at least one management person who found themselves without a job or company healthcare after 30 years, and put a handgun to his head to end it all because there was nothing else left.
With the continued outsourcing of jobs overseas and automation, Americans are finding it increasingly harder to find well-paying employment. This is especially true in red states that have relied on manufacturing and unskilled manual labor.
The American Dream of a single-income household with a white picket fence is long behind us. Those were the post-WWII days when the richest people paid for social programs, unions were strong, and manufacturing jobs allowed one parent to stay home with the kids. I’m not too young to remember when a trip to a country dentist cost $5 per tooth extraction, and you could trade a trip to the doctor for a couple dozen eggs. My childhood physician was a former Nazi Luftwaffe pilot who immigrated to the United States and charged little or nothing for his care.
All of that is gone now, and we have to face a new future that doesn’t resemble the “good old days” Republicans wax on about. We need single-payer insurance to replace Obamacare because too many people will find themselves without affordable healthcare, especially in the areas that voted for Trump.
Things are going to get worse, not better. The failure of the Trump administration to repeal and replace Obamacare is another broken promise to the people he supported. If he wanted to do them any sort of favor, he would propose going to single-payer insurance and Democrats would get behind that.
Sadly, the Deplorables would rather watch America burn than watch Obamacare succeed, or find reasonable fixes to it. It’s their loss.