Senate Democratic leadership have issued a letter to Speaker-Elect Boehner warning House Republicans that Obamacare repeal is dead in the water in the upper chamber.
Shrewdly, if unsurprisingly, the letter focuses on the Medicare “donut hole” closed by PPACA, allowing the relatively popular part to stand for the awful, messy whole:
The new law provides that seniors will receive a 50-percent discount on the brand name drugs that they purchase while stuck in the “donut hole” and thus will save them thousands of dollars starting in 2011. . . .
This is no minor reform. But almost as soon as it has taken effect, it is already in jeopardy.
The incoming House Republican majority that you lead has made the repeal of the federal health care law one of its chief goals. We urge you to consider the unintended consequences that the law’s repeal would have on a number of popular consumer protections that help middle class Americans. The “donut hole” fix is just one measure that would be threatened by a repeal effort. Taking this benefit away from seniors would be irresponsible and reckless at a time when it is becoming harder and harder for seniors to afford a healthy retirement.
If House Republicans move forward with a repeal of the health care law that threatens consumer benefits like the “donut hole” fix, we will block it in the Senate. This proposal deserves a chance to work. It is too important to be treated as collateral damage in a partisan mission to repeal health care.
More here, via Greg Sargent.