Earlier today, the Republican leadership in the House pulled their proposed healthcare bill from consideration, saying that, despite having a Republican majority in Congress that has long vowed to repeal the Affordable Care Act, their attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act didn’t have enough votes to pass.
It’s a truly stunning development, one nobody could have expected.
How did the GOP fail to pass this bill? Everything seemed to be in their favor. Replacing Obamacare has been a conservative priority for years, and they finally had the legislative and executive control to make it happen. Paul Ryan and his underlings took up the task, proposing a bill that would modestly reduce the federal deficit by around $35 billion a year as well as lower average insurance premiums by around 10%, achieving those savings by raising premiums so dramatically on the old and vulnerable that they would exit the insurance market, ultimately cutting off access to insurance for 24 million Americans. Hard to argue with those terms, you would think.
Yet the bill—which came after a seven-year period in which Republican leaders could draft an Obamacare replacement, refine it, test its viability with the rank-and-file, and perform the backroom negotiations which would ensure it would come out of the gate with enough votes to pass—unexpectedly ran into some controversy, as it alienated moderate Republicans, who worried about the proposed reductions to Medicaid coverage; hard-right Republicans, who fumed that it only paid lip service to the long-held promise of repealing Obamacare; and parasitic toadies like Newt Gingrich, who leapt to the bill’s defense only to immediately change course upon learning of its 17% approval rating with the general public. But the GOP was prepared to immediately change course, hastily releasing an updated bill which managed only half the deficit reduction of the original while still leaving 24 million Americans uninsured.
Despite these setbacks, the GOP still had one ace up their sleeve: President Donald Trump, who rose to fame on his ability to make deals. And he worked his magic again yesterday. To sweeten the deal for the dissenters in the party, Trump vowed that he would give up on the Obamacare repeal if this bill didn’t pass the House, meaning that Republican legislators on the fence had a choice: either vote for a bill with 17% approval rating that might serve their constituents worse than Obamacare has, or just keep Obamacare in place. This should have been a no-brainer, and yet it wasn’t enough. The bill was withdrawn before it ever reached the House floor for a vote, and now people are making fun of Paul Ryan by saying he listens to Papa Roach:
That the bill failed to pass is utterly baffling. It defies any attempt at explanation or comprehension, joining a long list of phenomena that simply cannot be understood:
The finish of the 2007 Daytona 500
Just look at it. Anything about this seem unusual to you?
That’s right. Rewind. Look again.
Yep. The smoking gun. Literally. (At least for the “smoking” part, if not the “gun” part.) That car is upside down. Yeah, you heard me right. A 3400-pound car just lifts up and flips over like it’s nothing. You try and flip over something that weighs just 100 pounds. Almost impossible, right? Now tell me that it’s possible for something that weighs 34 times that much to flip over. Much less one that’s stuck to the ground with racing tires, which are way stickier than road tires. Not possible.
And then I’m supposed to believe it just flipped back over onto its wheels?
Plus, it’s on fire. Cars don’t catch fire. They’re made of metal and stuff.
The sinking of the Titanic
The popular narrative says that the Titanic sank in 1912. But, like, that’s barely even convincing. You’re saying it sank after hitting an iceberg? Come on. The ship’s made of steel. Try cutting through steel with an ice cube. You can’t.
Where things go when they leave my line of sight
Ever since my dad disappeared when he raised his hands in front of his face, I’ve made it my life’s goal to find out. Yes, my dad returned—or, at least, someone claiming to be my dad returned—but he never offered a convincing explanation as to where he had gone.
But I vowed to find out. Now I wander the world, putting things behind other things, trying to figure out where they disappear to—but in order to figure that out, I have to look behind the thing I put the other thing behind, and then the original thing reappears again, so progress has been slow.
Who John Galt is
Admittedly, I’m not very far into Atlas Shrugged yet, so maybe there’ll be some answers to this one later on.
Sandra and Jean-Claude
Sandra, the light of my life, my golden-haired sunrise to each new day. My one and only love, now and forever. Ever since eleventh grade, when, hand in hand, we vowed to never leave each other’s side, I knew we would be together for all eternity. So I don’t buy that she’s now with some “Jean-Claude” guy. It’s just not possible. I mean, we haven’t spoken since we broke up the summer before we went to college. Plus, I was the one who suggested we break up, since we were going to different schools. And I’ve squandered countless opportunities over the years to reach out and suggest we get back together. I just don’t get it.
I mean, who would voluntarily live in Des Moines?