Is Obamacare Already Dead

Should-Read: I think that this from the smart Kevin Drum is largely but not completely wrong.

Remember: if the exchanges fail, then the next steps are either (a) single payer–socialized medicine by the government–or (b) guaranteed access–you go to the doctor or the hospital, they treat you, and it is then their problem to figure out how they cover their costs. The exchanges are the last chance for a market-based health-insurance system. But it is not about any beliefs that market-conservative means are pragmatically and technocratically effective. It is about dissing the Kenyan Muslim Socialist and all his works. And there are enough interest groups on the reality-based side of this to pull their chain, in the Senate at least…

Kevin Drum: Is Obamacare Already Dead?: “Ryan and Trump have been insisting for months that Obamacare is collapsing…. This is ridiculous, of course…

…It’s covering more than 20 million people at a lower cost than originally projected, and by any fair appraisal it’s been hugely successful…. But what happens next?… It’s clear that they’ll do everything they can to undermine Obamacare along the way. In a few months, insurance companies have to decide whether they want to participate in the exchange market in 2018, and I wonder what they’ll decide? The uncertainty is sky high now, and that means they have little incentive to continue. Remember, most insurers swallowed big losses early on in hopes of building a stable, profitable market later. But what’s the point of absorbing losses if it looks like—at best—years and years of chaos ahead?… I wonder. Merely by upending everything and making it clear just how dedicated they are to cutting taxes on the rich and cutting health coverage for the poor, have Republicans already managed to effectively repeal Obamacare without passing a single page of legislation?