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Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Tuesday, January 17, 2017 01:15 pm

Of course Donald Trump has to get rid of Obamacare. It was one of his major promises (like fixing immigration and trade) that he has to follow through on or risk losing members of his base. The question is what it's replaced with and on what timetable.

Most of us who were horrified by the Affordable Care Act will be hoping for something market based and patient centered. And when people like Paul Ryan and Rand Paul talk about it, it seems like that might be what we get. But when Trump talks about it, it's not at all clear:

Trump is making some big promises: His insurance reform will cover more people and cost less money.

"We're going to have insurance for everybody," Trump told The Washington Post. "There was a philosophy in some circles that if you can't pay for it, you don't get it. That's not going to happen with us."

"[They] can expect to have great health care. It will be in a much simplified form. Much less expensive and much better," he said.

Health insurance for everybody? How can they possibly guarantee that? What does it even mean? Is sounds like one grand, empty gesture along the lines of "No child left behind." One of the worst things about Obmacare (and that's a really tough call to make) is that it takes pre-existing conditions off the table as a reason not to give somebody coverage. If pre-existing conditions are covered, that's not really insurance, anymore than letting somebody buy automobile coverage after the wreck can be called insurance. It might be something, but it's not insurance. And if everybody has it, it's not insurance, either. Medicare isn't insurance. It's an entitlement.

If some of us think government is too big and intrusive now, just wait to see what it looks like when "insurance for all" is an entitlement. And insurance for all is just a step away from "great health care for all." That certainly can't be guaranteed, but that won't stop them from promising it. Oh, wait. Trump did just promise exactly that.

Hell, people will demand great health care. There was this depressing poll out recently:

According to a new Quinnipiac poll, 18 percent of of voters feel Congress should fully repeal Obamacare. 47 percent would like some parts of the ACA to be cut and 31 percent state they want the entire law to stay intact.

On whether President-elect Donald Trump should support efforts to repeal the law, the public was divided. 48 percent feel he should back Congressional efforts to ax Obamacare while 47 percent think he shouldn’t.

And then there was this one:

On the eve of its possible repeal, Obamacare is at its most popular, according to a poll from NBC and the Wall Street Journal released Tuesday.

Forty-five percent of Americans surveyed said they think Obamacare, the outgoing president’s signature legislative achievement formally called the Affordable Care Act, is a “good idea.” Forty-one percent think it is a bad idea.

Support is up fairly strongly even among Republicans. Just further proof of how hard it is to end something or take it away once government gets it in place. People get so used to what they're getting that they don't want to let go, no matter how bad the program is. And this one is the stinker of all stinkers.

Speaking of polls, there are two new ones out suggesting that Donald Trump is entering the White House a hated man:

They find that Trump starts out in the weakest position of any president in decades. But it may be even worse than this. The polls also show that many of the things he’s about to do are also deeply unpopular.

First, the toplines. The new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds that only 40 percent of Americans view Trump favorably, versus 54 percent who view him unfavorably. Those numbers are identical (40-54) on the question of whether Americans approve of how he’s handled the transition so far. Only 44 percent say Trump is qualified to serve as president.

Meanwhile, the new CNN poll finds that only 40 percent approve of how Trump is handling his transition. And 53 percent say Trump’s statements and actions make them less confident in his ability to serve as president.

Only 40 percent! My, my, that's just awful. His numbers can't be that bad just because of Democrats. A lot of his supporters must be deserting him already.

But if you dig down into the numbers, you find that in one poll, only 24 percent of those questioned were Republicans, and in the other one only 23 percent were. That story was not easy to find. Most of the ones i saw went on and on about how brutal the numbers are and how disastrously Trump compares to the pre-inaugural approval ratings of every president in history.

Nothing like a little fake news from the bitter press to keep the bitter divide in the country going.


Is the national reciprocity bill being considered just the thing we need to protect gun rights, or is it dangerous to let the federal government take this over from the states? Mixed feelings myself.

Oh, of course. We can't have that, can we? Parents Furious Over 'Misogynist' Dating Assignment That Encouraged Girls to Be 'Lady-Like'

Oh, darn. We missed Grand Valley State University's Martin Luther King Day teach-in on oppressive fashion trends: "The seminar on the ‘Privilege Your Clothes Show' and the ‘Power Your Attire Speaks' will apparently discuss the numerous 'biases' and 'societal oppressions' associated with various fashion trends, according to a list of 'Teach-in 2017 Sessions' obtained by Campus Reform."

Where is music headed in 2017. Toward sucking even more than ever, would be my guess. Yep, I've finally reached that fuddy duddy "music was better way back when" stage.

Joe Scarborough says Donald Trump will blow the Republican Party apart and George W. Bush will be considered the last Republican president. Considering the state the party is in, I can't say that's a totally bad thing. And let's hope Democrats don't recover from Barack Obama, either. In fact, let's just start over.

Heads are finally starting to roll at the Clinton Foundation, so it looks like its days are numbered. Pretty pointless to keep an influence-peddling operation going when you don't have any influence to peddle.

RIP, Eugence Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon, dead at 82. It's one thing to realize that the World War I veterans are all gone now, and even that the World War II veterans are leaving us rapidly. But the last man on the moon? Come on.

Liberal journalists rediscover mission as Obama leaves office:

In an article published Monday, Politico’s Jack Shafer argues that Donald Trump has made reporters “free” to cover the presidency in a more aggressively critical manner than they did during previous administrations.

Reporters, Shafer says, “ought to start thinking of covering Trump’s Washington like a war zone.

”“Witness how many publications are selling subscriptions by promising to ‘hold Trump accountable,'” Shafer adds later, arguing that “It’s not winter that’s coming with the inauguration of Trump. It’s journalistic spring.”

He does not seem to understand what an indictment of modern journalism this is. He think we're going to forget they were nothing but cheerleaders for the last eight years?



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