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Dereliction of duty

There is justified debate in this country about whether the Affordable Care Act is good or bad and what the ideal health care system for the United States would be. But we need not mince words when discussing Republican politicians’ approach to dealing with that difficult debate: It is an abandonment of their responsibilities.

The Affordable Care Act that the nation is operating under now is not the Affordable Care Act that was passed in 2010. It is instead a perversion from seven years of Republican neglect. Over the entirety of the Obama administration, Republicans worked to expedite the Affordable Care Act’s failure rather than offering any substantive suggestions on how it could be improved.

Few, if any, people think the Affordable Care Act was a perfect bill. Even most Democrats want to see changes to it. But when pillars upon which the bill was to depend were knocked down by Republican lawmakers, it was never given a chance to do what it was meant to do.

Rather than work to make sure this law that they didn’t like helped the country as much as it could, they took steps to lessen the good or increase the harm it could do so they could get rid of it and replace it with something else.

What else? Apparently that’s a question they never asked themselves. Given the opportunity, both branches of Congress failed to agree upon a new option. And now that they have failed, they have returned to the idea of getting rid of the ACA and figuring out the rest later.

This is not governing, and it is not what the American people want.

A poll from the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows that Americans overwhelmingly want the two parties to work together on changes to health care law. Only 13 percent support repealing “Obamacare” without a replacement.

Hopefully the politicians in Washington will finally realize their folly and work to actually help people, rather than continuing to hurt their country in the name of some partisan stand.

(c) 2017 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-363-7269 or email madams@bridgetowermedia.com.

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