The Right and Left React to Medicaid Cuts, Travel Ban and More

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    Mr. Benson points out that under the Republican plan, states would once again be able to concentrate government dollars to the poorest people and make Medicaid “fiscally sustainable.” He goes on to say that, under the Affordable Care Act, life expectancy has decreased. If Republicans trafficked in the “same brand of ugly, motive-impugning hysteria” as the Democrats, he argues, they would try to establish a causal relationship between the Affordable Care Act and rising mortality rates. Read more »


    Robert Holland in American Spectator:

    “With federal vouchers for homeschooling, Washington, D.C. soon would be registering and tracking homeschooled children, as well as deciding how much could (or should) be spent on their instruction.”

    Mr. Holland believes in home schooling, and denounces a “government-knows-best attitude” in matters of education. However, he is worried about home schooling receiving federal money, a scenario he characterizes as a “suffocating embrace.” One need only look at the charter school movement — the “one-time new frontier of school choice and innovation” — to see how government funding leads to an “increasingly rule-setting, bureaucratized model” of education. Read more »


    From the Left

    Clio Chang in the New Republic:


    Protesters demonstrating against the health care legislation outside the Capitol Hill office of Senator Marco Rubio, Republican of Florida, on Wednesday. Credit Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

    Policy has adverse consequences. If we send people to war, people will die. If we consign people to live in poverty, people will die. If we take away health insurance, people will die. It has become increasingly harder for the G.O.P. to justify these deaths with anything remotely resembling sensible policy, so now it seeks to take them out of the equation altogether.

    Ms. Chang offers a rebuttal to the conservative argument that it is inappropriate to cast the health care debate in terms of life or death. She says doing so is a “complete divorce from the policy itself.” And she goes on to point out that the majority of people crafting the bill and commenting on it in the media are distanced from its effects personally. Read more »


    Nathan J. Robinson in Current Affairs:

    “There are, surprisingly enough, a number of people who do not subscribe to the belief that democracy is good.”

    Mr. Robinson finds thinkers across the political spectrum trying to use the era of Trump and global populism to make a fashionable argument against “too much democracy.” He notes that elites dismissing populism miss the point that they are the ruling political class being displaced and “the old cliché about democracy being the worst form of government except for all the others remains as true as ever.” Read more »


    Maha Hilal in Foreign Policy in Focus:

    “I’m a U.S. citizen. I’m also Muslim. And the Supreme Court decision on the Trump administration’s Muslim travel ban scares me.”

    Dr. Hilal writes that the travel ban magnifies the “legitimate fear that one will either be targeted by state violence or become a target of societal violence.” She writes that being told to trust in the democratic process and courts system is a challenge for groups that have felt historically disenfranchised under what she calls “a long history of discriminatory, racist, and Islamophobic policies under several administrations.” Read more »


    And Finally, From the Center:

    Charles Lane in The Washington Post:


    Staple & Fancy, a restaurant in Seattle, raised prices and added a service charge after the city raised the minimum wage to $15 per hour. Credit David Ryder for The New York Times

    “Perhaps we should change the subject, from how high we set the wage to how we set it, period.”

    Two studies have reached conflicting conclusions about how Seattle’s minimum wage increase affected employment rates in the city. The result was not unexpected: Partisans on either side of the issue became more entrenched. But in this op-ed, Mr. Lane argues that we need “a more intellectually honest” debate that establishes a “relatively objective process” for setting the minimum wage. Read more »


    Chris Cillizza on CNN:

    “What deserves to be debunked is the idea that the public at large is clamoring for Trump’s tweets.”

    In a plea for civility, Mr. Cillizza says any analysis that interprets a lack of mass condemnation for President Trump’s aggressive communication tactics misses the point. “Toleration is not adulation,” he argues. And just because his greatest supporters are “learning to live with something they know they can’t change” doesn’t mean that it should be taken as a broader acceptance of this behavior. Read more »


    • The editorial board of The Columbus Dispatch:

    “Americans are fretful about the future of health-care costs and coverage, and a sustainable solution won’t be found amid the obstructionism of which both political parties are guilty.”

    With a popular Republican governor lauding the positive impact of the Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, Ohio has emerged as one of the pivotal proving grounds for the ongoing health care debate. This unsigned editorial from the state capital’s newspaper argues that Republicans should “stop the rush, and include Democrats and health-care experts from outside the Beltway in crafting a new overhaul.” Read more »


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