FROM Peter Suderman
Healthcare nears the home stretch. Can it make it over the line? Republicans pledged to repeal and replace Obamacare even before it became law seven years ago. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell wanted a vote this week on the latest Republican healthcare bill , which remains highly unpopular -- only one in three Americans support it, only 35 percent of Republicans. Now, the vote has been postponed until Arizona Senator John McCain recovers from surgery to remove a blood clot. In the meantime, opposition to the bill has increased, with key Republican governors, like Arizona's Doug Ducey, expressing concern. We take a look at whether the bill really reflects a Republican vision for the healthcare system.
Does Obamacare Have a Shaky Future? This year's open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act is about to close, with almost 10 million people having signed up so far. Some six million could be in for a big surprise as the US Supreme Court might decide they're not entitled to subsidized health insurance after all. Most of them don't even know they might lose the new coverage they couldn't afford on their own. Now Republicans — who've failed to repeal Obamacare in Congress — could face a hornet's nest of angry constituents if the Court guts the law for them. Both sides are jockeying for political advantage as the Court prepares to hear arguments and make a decision.
When Will Obamacare be Ready for Prime Time? Was the White House overconfident? Why didn't it listen to friendly warnings from experienced sources? Now, consumers are frustrated by computer glitches in some of the 36 states where the federal government set up insurance exchanges last week to implement the Affordable Care Act. Can the problems be fixed before they do long term damage to an already controversial program?
Medical Care and Political Confusion Republicans who once warned about "death panels" are now telling Democrats to stop frightening old people with "Mediscare." But Newt Gingrich says the country's not ready for Paul Ryan's privatization plan , and some Republicans who voted for it are having second thoughts too. Meantime, the former Governor of Massachusetts is trying to explain why " RomneyCare " looks so much like " ObamaCare ." And the State of Vermont is about to embark on its own program of "universal coverage," the ultimate public option. We try to sort it all out.
White House budget proposal slashes and burns President Trump's first budget request is considered dead on arrival in Congress — a familiar development in Capitol Hill. We hear what it reveals about the priorities of the new administration. What's likely to die… and what might survive?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
What happens when America retreats from the world? Is President Trump taking his "America First" agenda to extremes, withdrawing the country from the international stage on trade and climate change, distancing America from its traditional allies across the Atlantic and even threatening to physically isolate the country through the building of a wall along its southern border? León Krauze guest hosts.