Another Refusal to Engage

…rather, another decision by the Progressive-Democrats in Congress to turn their backs and obstruct.  In follow-up to the March meeting between the Congressional Black Caucus and President Donald Trump, Trump invited the CBC to another meeting.  The CBC refused.

CBC Chairman Congressman Cedric Richmond (D, LA) wrote in a letter to Trump that proposals in the president’s budget would “not only devastate the communities that we represent, but also many of the communities that supported your candidacy.”

Medicaid-Receiving Companies Object to the Senate Bill

The Senate is proposing an overhaul of Obamacare and an improvement to the health coverage providing industry, and one of those improvements is a rollback of the Obamacare expansion of Medicaid and an eventual capping of Federal funds transfers to the States’ Medicaid programs.  There are objections to this.

The primary objections are from insurers and hospitals, et al., who get a significant fraction of their income from the guarantees of Medicaid payments; they don’t want to have to compete in the open market.  They prefer the supposed safety of that guaranteed income, paltry though it is, especially compared to the income available from a free market, and they don’t care what that “safety” costs those who must pay for it.

Obstructionism

…for the sake of obstructionism.  And now the Progressive-Democrats in the Senate are getting blatant about it.  They don’t want to help reform the health care coverage disaster of the last eight years, so to block Republican and Conservative efforts at reform, these Progressive-Democrats have decided to block everything in the Senate.  Here’s Senator Chris Murphy (D, CT) o the overall attitude:

What more could we do—hold Republican Senators by the arms to stop them from getting to the chamber?  I think we’ll use every tool at our disposal.

The Rich Are Out Of Money?

They are in Connecticut, anyway, or at least out of trust in the State’s government regarding their money.  Or the State is out of rich.  Aetna, Inc, one of the giants of health and dental coverage that’s headquartered in Connecticut is looking hard at joining the exodus from the State, having grown tired of being the State’s tax piggy bank.

Governor Dannel Malloy (D) says he’ll match other states’ financial incentives—not exceed—if only Aetna will stay, but as The Wall Street Journal put it, “taxpayer money can’t buy fiscal certainty and a less destructive business climate.”

Another Hypocrisy of the Left

Among the tax reforms in the current plan before Congress is the elimination of the state and local tax payments as deductions from individuals’ Federal income tax returns.  Who actually benefits from these deductions, though?  Taxpayers in New York, California, and a couple of others.  States dominated, for the most part, by the Progressive-Democratic Party.  There’s an ox being gored.

Who else benefits from these deductions?

…88% of the benefits in 2014 flowed to taxpayers who earn more than $100,000, while 1% went to those who earn less than $50,000….

On Whose Side Are These Guys?

There is a move afoot in Congress to “overhaul” Dodd-Frank, at least to the point of adjusting the threshold size that banks would need to exceed in order to become subject to strict rules on “the capital, mergers, and other business” in which Government will permit these otherwise private enterprises to engage.  Under the present threshold of $50 billion or more in assets, some 37 financial institutions are subject to such Government diktat.

The trick will be reaching a compromise on what should come next.

Medicaid Transfers

It’s well understood that Medicaid badly wants reform.  My own view is to give it back to the States by reducing Federal fund transfers to them until the transfers are zero, which also would eliminate Federal strings jerking the States to do everything the same way, the Federal way.

There are lots of paths to that end, and there are a number of other reforms that would help the situation at least a little.  The House plan for repeal and replace of Obamacare, the first step of which was the American Health Care Act, has one such step, the repeal of Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion.

Department of YGTBSM

Amtrak has decided to refurbish New York City’s Penn Station, which will involve unavoidable disruption through the summer.  New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) doesn’t think Amtrak is up to the task, so he’s bringing New York to the rescue.

The state will step up and do it.  We don’t own Penn Station but we will step up and we’ll take over construction and we’ll do it with a private construction company or let the Port Authority do it.

So generous.  Here’s how the Democrat will execute his generosity.

I’m Looking Forward

…to Carter Page’s testimony—in whatever venue.

Former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page has asked House lawmakers to let him testify in an open session to offer his side in the ongoing probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 race….

Page made his offer in a long letter to Congressmen Adam Schiff (D, CA) and Michael Conaway (R, TX), Ranking Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence  and acting lead on the committee’s investigation into Russian interference in our 2016 elections in place of the committee chairman Devin Nunes (R,CA), respectively.

So far, he’s received no response.

Yet Another

…Alinsky-esque distraction by the Ctl-Left.  This one is on the matter of Obamacare subsidies to health coverage providers to compensate them “for reducing out-of-pocket costs for some low-income consumers who sign up for plans on the exchanges.”

The Obama administration paid billions of our tax dollars to these providers, the amount for this year alone looks to be in the neighborhood of $7 billion, with the annual payout looking to rise to $16 billion in 10 years.

The House has sued to block further payments because no funds were appropriated for them, and so they’re illegal.  A number of State AGs are seeking to intervene in the suit.