While the Republican party perpetuated the myth that the Affordable Care Act was foisted through the legislature and into law, the new reality is anything but a myth: Republicans, if they get their way, will pass the American Health Care Act into law without ever once showing the public a single copy of the final bill.
Though Mitch McConnell would have you believe the treatment of the ACA and the AHCA in the Senate are one and the same, the numbers don’t lie.
Before the ACA, or Obamacare, was passed into law, affecting millions, there were 100 hearings held in the Senate to discuss and debate the language of the law. During those 100 hearings, 161 amendments were proposed by Republicans, amendments which were debated and discussed.
This fact was pointed out on Monday evening during the Democrat’s late-night talk-a-thon by Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon. Merkley displayed the stark differences in hearings and amendments between the two bills in a clear infographic.
Obamacare had 100 Senate hearings and 161 amendments from Republicans.
Trumpcare has had 0 Senate hearings and 0 amendments from Democrats. pic.twitter.com/jSyeHhm3TQ
— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) June 20, 2017
Now, as the Republican committee continues to hide their Obamacare replacement behind lock and key, not a single hearing has been held. As a result, not a single Democratic amendment has been proposed because Democrats must be able to see the legislation before they can propose any fixes on it.
The absurdity of this lack of coverage, hearings, or discussion over a bill that would affect every single American (and kill several thousand per year), was portrayed in a recent video from NowThis. The video points out that the Senate has held more hearings to discuss hot tub safety in 2017 than they have to discuss the AHCA.
The reason Republicans are able to get away with this obstruction is in part due to the media’s distraction. By covering so many other relevant news stories, major outlets are neglecting to cover the Republican’s refusal to let the latest draft of the AHCA see the light of day.
Without an attentive media alerting the American public of what the GOP is up to, they may actually achieve their goal of forcing a healthcare bill into law without ever letting the people it will affect ever see the bill.