Ahead of the American Healthcare Act (AHCA), president Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan are making what they described as "required changes" to the controversial act in an attempt to get it to pass the House. "Quite frankly," Ryan told reporters, "the AHCA does reduce entitlement benefits--but for many in the House, it does not go far enough."
Republicans have recognized that a substantial increase in white, lower-income mortality correlates to GOP votes. Ryan said he was hearing concerns that healthcare plans that included coverage for hospital visits, addiction recovery, and prescription drugs could lead to higher happiness and security in voters who are their strongest constituency.
"The opioid epidemic has been really, really good for the GOP," Ryan said. "We don't want to get in the way of that. Places like Appalachia which hollowed out economically, culturally, and spiritually are looking for a way to hit back at their perceived enemies. We don't want to become that target and we want to keep that dynamic going."
If you look at suicide rates you can see how we've caught an upswing due to vanishing coal jobs, weaker unions, and a collapse of the church and other traditional means of white-support. These all signal Democrat thanks to ecological codings, distrust of organized religion, and so on. That's GOP-Gold.
When the white-male suicide rate climbs, so does polarization. Suicide, however, was only one cause of death that the revised AHCA might target:
"Despair," Ryan said, "correlates strongly with substance abuse and both outright drug and alcohol poisoning and chronic liver disease are things that, if you can't afford the health care you have access to will strengthen the Republican coalition in the 45-54 demographic. Plus, if we can show that minorities, who vote Democrat, are doing better, well, that's a slam-dunk, isn't it?"
"Our voters will go 'those guys must be getting some kind of government hand-out--we've gotta vote more Republicans into congress!"
When asked if he was concerned that Republicans losing their health benefits under the AHCA was a concern, he dismissed it. "They won't know," he said. "Insurance is complex and there's so much fine print that if they can pay less for policy that doesn't really cover anything, they won't realize they aren't protected unless they try to use it. That's a small enough portion of the population we're not worried. Also, shame works--you tell them 'you should've read the contract! These people are so afraid of being called stupid they generally shut up at that point. Personal responsibility!"
Changes that House GOP members had called for in the new bill included:
Redirecting Suicide Hotline Calls to Nigerian Scammers
Requiring Bronze-Level Plans to Cover Nothing But Faith-Based Medicine
Further tax-breaks for Insurance CEOs who increase "barriers to payment"
Required 'Shame-Parades' for Medicaid Recipients (as well as work requirements, drug testing, and cavity searches)
Forcing women to undergo invasive ultra-sounds if considered "sexually active" by a physician
Funding 'Addiction Centers' which advertise as Addiction Recovery but really just get people totally hooked
Syphilis Testing on Minorities for no really good reason
A placebo-vaccine program that states can choose to implement instead of the controversial "real vaccines" currently required by overbearing federal government
Ryan indicated that with these changes the bill has a pretty decent chance in the House and might even pass the Senate if they know what's good for them.