Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: Obamacare and the Democrats, the Senate Democrats say they may want to help replace Obama.  Folks, this is a really, really — legislatively, this is going to be a pretty important thing.  Now, Trump has been running around, “We’re gonna repeal Obamacare. We’re gonna replace it.”  The Republicans have said we’re gonna repeal and replace it, and people believe that Trump is gonna do that.  But that’s only the beginning.  Repealing it is one thing.  But then there’s that word “replace.”  And that’s where all of the potential danger resides.  Repeal and replace. 

Now, as the free market advocate I am, what do you mean, replace?  Just get rid of this monstrosity and let the markets take care of this.  But people are too afraid to let that happen. 

That’s putting too much faith in the insurance companies, which everybody’s supposed to hate.  And that’s just too risky.  There has to be a replacement.  Why does there have to be a replacement?  Isn’t the fact that the federal government’s involved in the first place one of the reasons nobody can afford health care? 

Shouldn’t the objective be, the longtime objective to have health care priced like anything else is?  There are various levels of it that you can afford, and that’s what you get.  Like there is in hotels, like there is in airline seats, like there is in cars and TV sets and whatever.  There’s higher tier, middle class tier.  The left says, “No, health care shouldn’t be any different.  The poor should have the same access as the rich.” 

Well, I understand the emotional aspect of that, but then why shouldn’t the poor have access to every car the rich do?  “Well, that’s not health care.”  What do you mean?  What’s magic about health care?  “Well, health care is an entitlement.  We’re all entitled to not get sick.”  Really?  “And then we’re all entitled to get well.”  Really?  Really.  Well, that’s what people think.  I mean, even a lot of so-called conservatives do not want to go to war over market characteristics of health care.  

But I’m just gonna tell you that it’s never gonna get resolved until we devise a system where the vast majority of health care is priced according to what people can pay for, like everything else in the market is.  We don’t subsidize airline tickets.  We don’t subsidize cars — except for Elon Musk, who’s one of the biggest corporate welfare beneficiaries in the history of corporate welfare.  Not just tell us motors, but that SolarCity outfit of his which he’s gonna buy.  This guy’s gotten over $6 billion worth of subsidizes!  He hasn’t made a profit in anything. 

Everybody talks what a great… Because of the left-wing prejudice and bias about electric cars that somehow that’s clean energy they never stop to think that coal is being burned (sorry, I don’t mean to be shouting) to charge these marvelous vehicles.  But we don’t subsidize airline tickets.  We don’t subsidize hotel rooms.  We don’t subsidize grocery… Ah, ah! I’m sorry. (chuckles) Food stamps.  So we subsidize cigarettes, we subsidize booze, we subsidize…  But you get my point.  There ought to be insurance for catastrophic health incidents, major, major things like an automobile accident or an act of God-type of thing or acquiring a terminal disease that takes years. 

But you’re not even talking about insurance.  Preexisting conditions? It’s not insurance.  You’re talking something entirely different.  I’m a big believer that words mean things, and it’s not insurance to insure against preexisting conditions.  We don’t let you buy insurance when your house is burning down.  We do not allow people to buy insurance in the middle of a catastrophic event.  If we’re gonna say we do that in health care, we got call it what it is.  It’s a subsidy, it’s this or that, but it’s not insurance.  But everybody wants to think they have health insurance.

So we’ll call it that because it makes it easier to make people think that officials are doing something good about it.  But I’m just telling you: Take care of the catastrophic side of the insurance and get this whole thing down to where the vast majority of daily, ordinary visits to the doctor and even some ordinary tests are things that you could put on your MasterCard and deal with it.  That ought to be the objective.  I know it’s not something that could happen overnight, but it ought to be the objective.  People say, “That’s silly.  You’ll never be able to get there.” 

I know.  That attitude will make sure we never get there but it ought to be the objective.  But I digress.  The “replace” part of this: When do you replace it?  Let’s say first thing that Trump does within a week of being inaugurated is repeal Obamacare.  Well, that doesn’t get rid of it.  Repealing it just simply says… But that doesn’t get rid of it.  The argument… There’s two arguments being circulated on the Republican side.  “Repeal and replace it with something in two years,” or, “Repeal it and replace it with something in three years.”

Because the argument against repeal right now in the United States Congress is, “We don’t have anything to replace it with.”  That’s comforting.  We have intellectually… Since this thing was signed into law in 2010, we have told ourselves that the first chance we get, we’re gonna repeal this.  And you mean to tell me that since 2010 there’s not a single Republican that’s put together an alternative idea?  That’s what they’re telling us.  So we can’t just repeal it ’cause there’s nothing to replace it with, and we just can’t repeal it and turn everything back over to market, because people say, “Ew, ew! Can’t do that! That’s horrible.”

If you repeal and replace in two years, the idea is there would be time to come up with a plan that you could pass before the next midterms in 2018.  But what if you come up with a plan that nobody likes and then the election comes in 2018 and a bunch of members of Congress and the Senate are thrown out because they don’t like — the public doesn’t like — what the replace plan is? So, okay, let’s wait for three years.  Let’s not… We’ll repeal it, but we’ll keep everything as is for three years, and then we’ll replace it.  We’ll replace it after the midterms.  The argument for that is, “Well, we might even have 60 seats in the Senate by then by then! 

“Why, in the midterms, the Democrats have 25 seats to defend.  They don’t have a prayer!  Many of them are in red states.  Why, if we wait until after the midterms and don’t do our new replacement plan until 2019 or 2020, we’ll be able to do anything because we will own majorities in the House and Senate and we will be veto-proof.”  But the danger of that is, what if you don’t win in the midterms? What if you don’t get your 60 in the Senate?  This a recipe for disaster here, and the reason it is because the “replace” crowd doesn’t want to do anything any time soon, meaning repealing Obamacare doesn’t mean jack.

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