“Rich Taking From the Poor”: Seth Meyers on the Sinister House Passage of AHCA

On last night’s episode of Late Night, Seth Meyers took a “closer look” at the worst news the country has seen since, well, probably a few days ago, as is the nature of the world the Republican party is trying to create for everyone who’s not a walking white neck waddle with a bloated bank account and a seat in office or at the top of some company weighing the financial benefits of, like, smothering babies in toxic waste.

Yesterday, House Republicans voted to approve the American Health Care Act, the bill Paul Ryan created as a “let’s make it worse” revision to the Affordable Care Act (tellingly replacing the word “Affordable” with whatever the fuck sinister emptiness “American” represents in this case). “Now we’re getting a glimpse of how Trump’s White House will square the promises he made about health care with the reality of this bill,” Meyers says. “They’ll just lie.”

He continues, “If the American Health Care Act becomes law, Trump and the GoP will not be able to escape the negative consequences…but I’m not sure Trump fully understands that.”

The ramifications of the bill, Meyers emphasizes, would leave as many as 24 million formerly insured Americans without coverage, immensely raising premiums for the elderly and poor, and cutting Medicaid by nearly $880 billion while the wealthy get an equivalent tax cut. The list of the ways this is detrimental continues, dizzyingly: states could, under this bill, decide not to regulate insurance companies’ cruel pre-existing conditions policies. It’d also be in states’ hands to decide on matters of essential benefits.

“Look how happy those old white guys are,” Meyers says of Republicans’ celebration after the House vote. “I guess they’re just happy they finally passed something that wasn’t a kidney stone — no longer covered, by the way.”

The hasty passing of the bill, and its lack of circulation (until the night prior to the vote, revisions to the initial text hadn’t been released), suggests that many people who voted for it didn’t actually read it in full — which some Republicans have confirmed. “Oh gosh, let’s put it this way; people in my office have read all the parts of the bill, and I don’t think any individual has read the whole bill, but that’s why we have staff,” Virginia Republican Tom Garrett told MSNBC. Chris Collins also admitted to not reading to it in full before voting for it. 

AHCA, of course, has only gone through the House, and a Senate vote against it would stop it — which is why this is perhaps one of the most important moments to be calling your senators to urge them not to vote for AHCA. Meanwhile, Swing Left now has a way for you to “donate to the opponents of Swing District Republicans who voted for Trumpcare.” As the Hill reports, “The [nonpartisan analyst] Cook Political Report on Friday shifted its forecast for 20 GOP-incumbent or open districts to categories less favorable for Republicans.” No one should get complacent about forecasts — because we all know the dangers of that — but, the new forecast does suggest a negative impact on the GOP’s chances in upcoming elections. All the more reason to vote to ensure that it does.