I watched Dr. Tom Price on a CNN "Town Hall" the other night. Who is Tom Price? He is a Physician, former member of Congress and now the Secretary of Health and Human Services in charge of Obamacare.
No, Congress is NOT nearly in charge of Obamacare. Congress gave the Secretary of HHS a list of over 1100 places in law where he/she could decide the fate of the national health care program - without Congressional or Presidential review. Of course that sounds scary and crazy at the same time. The few people that actually read Obamacare have been railing about this crazy set up for eight years.
Now that Republicans have a person of their own choosing running HHS - we should quit complaining and just use those 1100 power portals to blow up Obamacare from the inside, right? That sounds like a pretty effective plan. That is what Paul Ryan wants to do. But is that the right way to run a healthcare plan? To permit political appointees to blow up a system or repair it or remake it everytime a new President comes along?
Of course nobody stopped to ask those kinds of questions on CNN. The typical set-up questions were all lined up to play "gotcha" with Dr. Price. Several questions from the audience began with "How dare you try to take away my Obamacare!" A bit predictable, right?
What was sad about the evening and this entire debate is that few people ever question the questioners. One time Dr. Price did so. An angry woman was lecturing Dr. Price about how her health plan premiums will skyrocket in the reform legislation because of her age. Dr. Price asked her how she purchased her health insurance. She responded that she got her plan from her retirement package as a school teacher. The good doctor then reminded her that her coverage was not a part of the current Obamacare program nor would it be touched in the proposed reform legislation.
Next question, please.