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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Remind Us Again Why ANYONE Would Admit to Being a Republican

In their first major act since assuming control of the House of Representatives, the Republican Party proved conclusively that they are a party of mean-spirited cowards. Mean-spirited because their first priority was to repeal healthcare reform that is meant--in however flawed a manner--to provide access to healthcare to some 30 million people who now lack such access. Cowards because they know this act of "principle" is nothing more than a symbolic gesture: They know the Democratic-controlled Senate will not allow the repeal to advance (and of course President Obama would veto it even if it did).

They have the courage of their convictions as long as those convictions are without consequence.

We also have had quite enough of Republican claims that healthcare reform is a "job killer." This, as far as we can tell, is premised on the bill's requirement that any business with more than 50 employees must provide its workers with health insurance or face stiff penalties. While we understand why employers would dislike this requirement, we don't buy the idea that this will discourage hiring. In theory, a company with 49 employees could refrain from hiring that budget-busting 50th; but isn't there something wrong with that theory? In practice, managers do cost-benefit analyses to see if the productivity gains of an additional worker offset the cost of providing health insurance. If the cost is too great, then the worker will not be hired.

Are Republicans under the impression that companies currently hire superfluous workers simply because they do not have to pay for health insurance--workers who will have to be fired when "Obamacare" kicks in?

Let's give the last word to Representative John Lewis, Georgia Democrat and civil rights icon:
“It is unbelievable that with so many people out of work and millions of people uninsured, the first act of this new Congress is to take health care away from people who just got coverage.”
"House Votes for Repeal of Health Law in Symbolic Act"

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