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NY-26 aftermath: Paul Ryan unravels on Moanin’ Joe

On Morning Joe this a.m, Congressman Paul Ryan seemed manic, defensive, and vexed. His frustration, anger, and paranoia were palpable. Those hypnotic blue eyes are now puffy and red from exhaustion. Dare I say that Ryan’s beginning to look disheveled? He couldn’t stay on message while he continued to drone on about the GOP’s “premium support” Medicare plan, but he’s beginning to sound like a hostage reading his own ransom demand.

In the segment, it seems that Ryan is trying to recast his message. His new plan is to tie his Medicare plan to the Brookings Institution and Bill Clinton’s health care task force. That’s right, Ryan is saying it was the liberals idea all along. Unfortunately Ryan’s plan doesn’t come close to resembling the “Premium Support” espoused by Brookings. In fact, Henry Aaron of the Brookings Institution denies the similarities and even exposes Ryan’s plan as not being premium support at all, but smoke and mirrors.

And while the public may not be able to articulate it, they know that it’s odd for the Republicans to want to disassemble the Affordable Health Care act, only to turn around and try to create market-based exchanges for the elderly and poor. The public also knows that they will rely on health care services extensively in the final few years of their life, and probably even more in those final days. So, if you’re throwing your seniors out into the private-sector marketplace, you know that the health insurance companies will do whatever it takes not to enroll these people. It’s not very profitable to be stuck with the sick and dying after all.

Aaron pulls no punches when talking about the GOP’s health-care initiative:

There’s one provision of the Ryan bill that stands out as being hands-down the worst, and that is giving the seniors who are poor enough to also be on Medicaid a medical savings account. Does he know who these people are? They’re very sick, they’re very poor and many of them have cognitive as well as physical problems. They would be asked to cope with the inevitable headaches of dealing with private insurance and managing a personal checking account to pay periodic bills. This is not a sensible proposal.

No, not sensible at all and not what the Brookings Institution originally prescribed, it seems.

Ryan’s primary goal has not been for properly caring for the elderly, but to confuse the public mind and create yet another giveaway to the bloated health insurance behemoths. It has been to reduce the financial security of the middle class, while insuring the financial security of corporations.

However, yesterday’s vote clearly shows that a majority of Americans have seen through his charade. And now you are seeing one of the greatest political meltdowns since Joe McCarthy was called out by Joseph Nye Welch during his communist witch hunt.

If the Democratic Party plays it smart, it will ride this message until November 2012.

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Cliff Weathers

Cliff Weathers