John Oliver is a “liberal darling.” Progressives tend to love his commentaries, there is no doubt. Few can break down issues like he can. Unfortunately, we live in the age of the internet where attention spans are often short and people are all too easily distracted. Many of Oliver’s commentaries tend to be long, upwards of 20 minutes. The result is there tends to be a lot less of Oliver’s messages out there than should be.
This week, however, the HBO host of “Last Week Tonight” got a little more direct and “to the point” on one of the most prevalent topics on many American’s minds today. Namely, the battle over a health care policy and the tremendous step backward that the “Trumpcare” bill that passed the GOP-dominated House of Representatives by a mere two votes last week. (See video below …)
Oliver pointed out the extreme haste that the House employed to pass this bill, known as the American Health Care Act, or AHCA. In addition to that, he made an issue of the fact that multiple members of the Congress admitted to not actually reading the bill they voted for. According to Oliver, perhaps they should have. But since they didn’t, Oliver took it upon himself to explain to them just how bad they messed up. Basically, as he explained, the House took a bill (the first version from a few weeks ago) and added the measure of allowing insurance companies to discriminate and charge people with pre-existing conditions more — much more — then passed it as fast as they could.
He unpacked the controversy about coverage if one has a pre-existing condition using the analogy of a child asking for a cookie. You, as the parent doesn’t deny the cookie to the little one, but explains that “it will be 1.5 billion dollars” and the child has not been “denied” the cookie. She still has full access to it, should she become successful enough to afford the cookie.
Oliver also featured a GOP lawmaker who didn’t read the bill and asked a reporter to “explain to him” how this bill will hurt his constituents after being informed the bill could kick 600,000 people in his state including over 19,000 people in his district off their healthcare plan. Of course, Oliver took on the task of giving him an explanation:
“This bill can cause many of your constituents to be thrown into an individual marketplace that they cannot afford. When they realize that, they will be furious with you. Essentially, you f*cked up.”
Oliver then went on to show in charts, graphs and a figurine just how bad he “f*cked up.”
After all the jokes (and there are more in the clip) — Oliver boiled down to a point. Despite what the House did and how bad they messed up, there is still the major hurdle of the Senate for the bill or any bill like it to get through. Oliver urged viewers to call their Senators and put the heat on to kill any of these “repeal and replace” schemes so perhaps we can get back to realistically looking at ways to amend and improve the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare.
Check out the full clip below:
When you are ready to get involved and call your Senator, you can use this handy list to get their direct number or call the Capitol Switchboard at 202- 224-3121 and ask for your Senator’s office.
Featured image via screen capture from youtube.com