Fred Henneke, Attorney & Counselor-At-Law
In an alternate universe, what I am writing might be taken as an April Fools Joke. But, it isn’t.
- CRISIS ON THE SOUTHERN BORDER. Yes, there truly is a crisis on our Southern border. And the face of the crisis are asylum seekers, men, women and children fleeing their violence-ridden home countries for refuge in the United States. By the thousands they are undertaking the dangerous journey from Honduras, or El Salvador, or Guatemala across Mexico to what they hope will be the promised land. Some may be those looking only for work, or drug dealers or other undesirables, but the vast majority are coming here to ask for asylum. And our laws say that once they touch US soil, they are entitled to ask for asylum. And our laws say they are permitted to remain in the United States and work until their claim is adjudicated on an average of 2 years later. And our elected representatives DO NOTHING to change the unworkable laws or even to provide the resources to house and evaluate their claims. While they come by the TENS OF THOUSANDS, overwhelming the governmental and charitable resources available.
- PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS. The most popular provision of the unconstitutional Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, is the prohibition on refusing medical insurance based on health conditions that existed before applying for the insurance, commonly known as pre-existing conditions. There are estimates that as many as TWENTY-SEVEN MILLION Americans could lose their health insurance if the ban on pre-existing conditions is stricken. A federal judge here in Texas has ruled that Obamacare is unconstitutional since the “tax” on the uninsured has been repealed and, thus, the entire act, including the protection against pre-existing conditions, is void. And the Trump Administration has weighed in on the side of the challengers.Given this looming crisis, isn’t it reasonable to assume that our elected representatives are talking among themselves and across party lines to get ahead of this impending disaster? AU CONTRAIRE! In the 2018 mid-term elections, health care, especially pre-existing conditions, was the single biggest single issue driving the Democrats’ victory. They are rejoicing in the political ramifications of this decision, planning how to use it in the 2020 elections. The Republicans, despite the President’ optimistic proclamations, don’t have a plan – not even a clue – as to how that are going to “replace” Obamacare now that it might be judicially “repealed”. The attitude of the electorate impacted by any repeal is “You Republicans broke it, now you own it”.
- THE MUELLER REPORT. There is no sense in spending much time on this one since no one, except a select few at the Justice Department, have actually seen the 400+ page report. Attorney General Barr’s 4 page “Summary” of important conclusions is suspect. Until the full report, redacted as required by law, is released, speculation will be rampant with little or no basis in fact.
- ONE FINAL SAD NOTE. I heard a commentary concerning the judicial demise of Obamacare by a well-known generally Republican pundit and political operative. His position was that it would be political suicide for the Republicans (or the Democrats) to advance a plan to actually replacing Obamacare. Why, you ask? Because any plan would provide ammunition to the other party for use in the 2020 elections. In other words, electoral advantage outweighs the good of the Nation. If that isn’t sad, I don’t know what is. (SIGH)