Healthcare reform, specifically repeal and replace, was a major campaign promise of candidate Donald Trump along with most Congressional Republicans. The House passed a reform bill and the Senate is debating their own bill with few signs of progress given the difficultly of pleasing both conservatives and moderates in the Senate. America’s favorite socialist, Senator Bernie Sanders, despite being on the losing side of any Congressional vote, sings the praises of healthcare north of our border.
Brian Joondeph | All Articles
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Brian C Joondeph, MD, MPS is a Denver based retina surgeon, working both in private practice and academics, including several years in another country with nationalized healthcare. He is a recent graduate of a master's degree program in healthcare leadership from the University of Denver, and an advocate for smaller, more efficient government.
Joondeph has practiced for 23 years as a retina surgeon, working both in private practice and academics, including several years in another country with nationalized health care.
President Trump campaigned on repealing and replacing Obamacare. Congress, when campaigning for reelection every two years, promised the same. Yet Congress can’t seem to get the job done. First, they needed the House, then the Senate, finally the White House. All delivered to GOP control by the voters. With the reasonable expectation of repeal and replace.
President Trump fired FBI director James Comey last week, abruptly, without warning or advanced leaks to the media. Of course, the Beltway establishment is apoplectic over the President dismissing a subordinate felt to be unfit for the job. As are Democrats who only weeks or months ago, themselves questioned Comey’s fitness to serve as FBI director and called for him to resign or be fired.
Congressional Republicans offered up a lame budget this week, funding sanctuary cities and Planned Parenthood, but not the wall on our southern border. Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are giddy with excitement, realizing that despite being electorally trounced over the past eight years, they still run Congress. Leading me to ask the question, “Why bother voting for Republicans?” Others are asking as well.
Politicians frequently get in trouble with the law. Corruption and sexual indiscretions are top reasons. Think Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton. Illinois governors are prime example, with 4 of the last 7 being sent to prison.
Election Day 2016 should have been Christmas morning for Republicans. Long awaited control of the White House and both houses of Congress. A chance to deliver on an every two-year election cycle promise to repeal and replace Obamacare. In 2010 Republicans needed the House. They got it. In 2014, it was the Senate. Delivered. But we still need the White House they said. Asked and answered with President Donald Trump.
Donald Trump’s executive order travel ban met with predictable resistance from the activist judiciary, whether the US District Court judge in Seattle or the far-left Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Despite being called a “Muslim ban” by the purveyors of fake news and useful idiots in the GOP establishment, there is no mention of religion in Trump’s executive order. Instead it simply identifies 7 countries, already labeled as “countries of concern” by the Obama administration and temporarily halts unfettered travel from these countries to the US until a proper vetting system can be implemented.
Democrats and their media comrades are in a lather this week over Russia supposedly hacking the election. They didn’t hack the actual election, but instead are somehow responsible for a peek beneath the Democrat skirts of John Podesta and the DNC. A trove of emails, which no one is disputing the authenticity of, showing what Hillary Clinton really thought about voters and how the Democrat Party torpedoed the primary candidacy of Bernie Sanders.
As the election season enters the proverbial fourth quarter, the race is a toss-up. Polls show Trump and Clinton virtually tied or else one or the other leading by a small percentage, within the margin of error. This might be a good time for the Republican Party to unify around their candidate. Victory is within their grasp. Yet many of the #NeverTrump brigade continue to passively sulk and pout, or else actively throw rocks at the Trump express hoping for a spectacular derailment.
Donald Trump has had quite the week. Just when naysayers like Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio begrudgingly accepted the decision of a majority of Republican voters and threw some lukewarm support to the presumed nominee, Trump went and did it again, going after the judge presiding over his Trump University litigation.
Chess is the ultimate game of strategy and tactics. Winning requires players to look well beyond the board in front of them, instead looking several moves ahead, anticipating their opponent’s actions and reactions. Politics is much the same, particularly the presidential nomination process where the chessboard is the entire country and the pieces represent not only the candidates, but also the political parties, organizations, and media.
When the Founding Fathers created the Bill of Rights, there was no caveat for selectively applying these rights based on political bent. Instead these rights apply to everyone regardless of where they sit on the political spectrum. For a quick review, here is the First Amendment.
Custer’s last stand, also known as the Battle of the Little Bighorn, was an epic battle between several Indian tribes and the U.S. Army well over a hundred years ago. Another battle is shaping up in the U.S. Senate, but instead of Commander George Custer we have Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell trying to hold off the pesky rebels.
Obamacare’s third open enrollment season started November 1. Will the third time be the charm? Or will it be three strikes and you’re out? Based on enrollment troubles, the latter is more likely. But striking out doesn’t mean Obamacare will go away. Like presidential candidates polling in the low single digits, they hang in there until the money finally runs out. Perhaps Obamacare will play out the same way.
Colorado took a brave, or perhaps foolish depending on your perspective, leap forward by legalizing recreational marijuana a few years ago. For the state’s encore, it may take a stab at a single-payer healthcare plan. Proponents of ColoradoCare collected 156,000 signatures, well in excess of what’s needed to create a ballot initiative for November 2016.
Gun control is back in the news after the recent Oregon college shooting with President Obama considering executive action on gun background checks. Predictably the President is pushing what he describes as “common sense” laws, although without specifically saying what such laws would be. The premise of the left is that there are too many guns out there and more guns means more mass shootings.
Daraprim is a drug no one ever heard of. Unless you happen to suffer from a parasitic infection called toxoplasmosis and also have a compromised immune system or suffer from AIDS. It’s been around since 1953 and due to limited demand it’s an orphan drug. Selling for about $13 per tablet, a course of therapy for three weeks is about $300, much of the cost covered by insurance. Ho hum.
Syrian refugees are pouring into Europe and the United States is poised to take at least 10,000 of them. Not to be outdone, Germany wants to take 800,000 refugees. What a compassionate gesture toward fellow human beings whose lives are disrupted by civil war and chaos in their home countries.
Climate change, previously known as global warming, is a national security issue according to President Obama. This was the message he delivered to recent U.S. Coast Guard Academy graduates. Funny, but when I think of national security issues other things come to mind, such as the rise of ISIS, cyber hacking by the Russians and Chinese, nukes in “Death to America” Iran, or our open borders.