Tom Price to HHS means big changes for Obamacare, Georgia politics

The news broke Monday night that Donald Trump has tapped Georgia’s Tom Price to be secretary of health and human services. It wasn’t a surprising report, but it confirms one thing and sets in motion a number of others.

Rep. Tom Price speaks at the National Press Club in Washington, February 2013.  (AP Photo)

Rep. Tom Price speaks at the National Press Club in Washington, February 2013. (AP Photo)

First, what it confirms: The president-elect is serious about repealing and replacing Obamacare. Price, the Roswell physician just re-elected to a seventh term in the U.S. House, has long been at the forefront of the GOP’s talk about ditching Obamacare in favor of what he bills as a more “patient-centered” law. As long as Barack Obama resided in the White House, that wasn’t possible. Now it is. But Price isn’t just a health-policy wonk; as chairman of the House budget committee the past two years, he has dug into the details of all federal revenue and spending. If Trump wants someone who not only understands how health policy works but all the ins and outs of Washington’s health budgets, including those for Medicaid and Medicare, he couldn’t do better than Price. The legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare will have to come from someone else with Price moving out of the Capitol, but he’ll be well-positioned to have great influence in how it’s drafted — and certainly in how it’s implemented.

As an aside, Price is close with House Speaker Paul Ryan, so his nomination would also seem to speak well of the influence Ryan and his circle will have over policy. There has of course been plenty of talk about how Trump and congressional Republicans will get along. This move doesn’t mean there will be no disagreements, but if Trump wanted to keep Ryan and his allies at arm’s length he might not have chosen Price. As a former chairman of the House’s conservative Republican Study Committee, Price can also be seen as an olive branch from Trump to movement conservatives (although Price was hardly #NeverTrump and in fact campaigned for him early and loudly).

Now for what it sets in motion. The scramble to fill Price’s seat will be intense. My colleague Greg Bluestein has already compiled a list of nearly a dozen folks who could throw their hats in the ring. We surely won’t see that many, but the large number of names suggests a) the field will be fairly large, and b) there’s no real favorite. The domino effect will be real. Greg’s list includes six state legislators: three apiece from the House and Senate. Running in a special election would normally allow them to give it a shot without giving up their seats — but because this special election will could take place during the 2017 session, at least a couple of them might resign their seats to campaign full-time. There’s precedent for that: Both Tom Graves and Lee Hawkins stepped down from the General Assembly in 2010 to run for Nathan Deal’s congressional seat, which Graves won. Some of the names on the list could instead seek offices vacated by those running for Congress.

There’s also a 2018 effect here. It was well-known Price was strongly considering a run for governor in two years. That would now seem to be off the table. That could draw another congressman into the race. (Just spit-balling here: Graves? Doug Collins?) Or a non-congressman. Or it could simply boost the chances of others running to succeed Gov. Deal.

If nothing else, this is another sign that after several years out of the D.C. limelight, Georgians will have a larger say in matters moving forward.

Reader Comments 0

196 comments
Eye wonder
Eye wonder

 Unemployment at 4.6% and 178,000 jobs added in November.  

Thank you, Barackus Caesar.

Now would probably be a good time to hand the reins to the Republicans so they can muck it up and we can get back to 10% unemployment.

Now would also be a good time to short US stocks.

Regina Brown Fuentes
Regina Brown Fuentes

Ready for these next 4 years to be over so we can pick up the pieces and repair the damage the gop does once again.

Stewart Coleman Speights
Stewart Coleman Speights

This bum has already said that insurance companies shouldn't have to cover people with pre-exsisting conditions. If he has his way insurance prices will roar, not just your premiums. He receives more donations from the healthcare, pharmaceutical and insurance industries than just about any other U.S. Representative. He's the #1 hater of "The Affordable Care Act" aka "Obamacare". His objective is to gut Obamacare and let insurance companies run rampant again. I will never understand why so many people have a problem with a program that was created to help people and save lives. It's obvious to me that he's a sellout to big money and is willing to put the healthcare of over 20 million americans at risk.

lvg
lvg

Just wait until Trump enterprises gets into the insurance business- all will change and we will have Trumpcare.Preexisting conditions  can be handled at the local ER with Reagancare.

Richard Elliott
Richard Elliott

now they can put up or shut up. the only change I can remeber made by republicans was the prescription drug deal that was a bonanza for drugmakers and a con job for citizens

lvg
lvg

Got W reelected. All the deficit hawks voted for it like Ryan. No funding source. 

lvg
lvg

So how many business deals has Trump accomplished as President Elect? How is that blind trust coming?

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

We should wonder if cbs, nbc, abc and cnn will even exist after the next 4 years. What purpose will they serve when the entire government of the United States has been returned to it's rightful owner, We The People? Will they hope we don't remember and try to join us? Won't that be a gas, seeing stephonoplous in Pickens County "can I git me one them there huntin licenses?" Will they try to fortify their ever shrinking coastal bubbles? 


Really, I just don't see their future.

lvg
lvg

@IReportYouWhine Fascist state does not need more than one news channel. Brannon can be minister of  propoganda.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Wait until January 21st when the lamestream/lapdog media finds itself locked out of the White House. Beitbart, Limbaugh and Hannity will be in their seats. If you think bookman has a blowed gasket now, wait until you see him then. It's going to be Foam City.


I can't wait.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

@IReportYouWhine

That is completely consistent with what a fascist regime would do.

fact

America is about to get its first fuhrer.

fact

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

Slow day on the blog.  The GOP should be ecstatic over Nancy Pelosi being re-elected to chair the minority.  She has presided over more lost seats in the House and Democrat defeats than any other Democrat leader ever has.   She is the Harold Stassen of the US House.


It keeps the leadership of the Democrat party in the hands of really old white women, which should be good for 2018. 

SGTGrit
SGTGrit

Peaked in next door. Bookman's still AWOL. Must be down with terminal blue flew brought on by Trump's, red election victory.

John Washington
John Washington

"...will Georgians will have a larger say in matters?" No. Big business will have a larger say in matters. Price doesn't bother representing the "little people".

ccrider27
ccrider27

People need to read Price's plan. The young, healthy and rich will do very well. People who are old, sick and poor are thrown to the wolves. "As you do to the least of these, you do to me."


Many of Trump's supporters are working class folks who fall into the latter category.


Wonder how they'll like him in a couple of years.

lvg
lvg

@ccrider27 What's wrong with Reagancare  at the local ER????. If you survive several hours in the waiting room then obviously you do not need  medical treatment. Great system.

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

@IReportYouWhine 

@IReportYouWhine Who determines what a Doctor deserves? You?


The market. That's why Health Savings Accounts play such an integral part of it. People that control their own money take much better care of it than do those who are spending OTP (other people's money.)

Do you remember many of the left's argument against HSAs?

I do.

Not only did they claim low-income folks wouldn't know how to navigate the system but they wouldn't spend the money on health care. 

breckenridge
breckenridge

Tom Price is social conservative white trash.

Dimick
Dimick

 

I've yet to see Tom Price clearly put forth a real affordable comprehensive healthcare plan. His one big point is to take the people in the worst of health, lump them together into what he called a "High Risk Pool" ... interpreted the people who will no doubt use health insurance the most that will cost the insurers the most money.

This is akin to refusing to cover the pooled sick or chronical ill by pricing the coverage they will need beyond what they will be able to pay.

For example:

If you are "SS declared disabled" have a chronic or very probable a terminal illness (non-renal) and you are not 65 years of age, though, you have Medicare because of the disability and ACA rules, the only way you can buy a supplemental like "Plan F" is to pay a premium of $1,600 a month. Or get a Medicare Advantage plan with a $4,999 deductible which increased this year by another $1,000 making it a $5,999 deductible Out-of-Pocket max.

The majority of people on this blog cannot afford to pay $1,600 a month for supplemental insurance policy on top of the $122 dollar payment for Medicare part B and they sure as hell don't dare drop part B.

Why do I bring this up. Because it's a case of "been there done that" and I know a good number of other people some of them on this blog who shouldn't have to live the example given or even try, when you know they can't do it even with hospital charity used to help them.

Now is that your idea of making America Great Again?

As "Tom Price" angrily screamed out to a crowd of people against Obamacare ...

"IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT!!"

Is that what you want Mr. Trump?

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Stein's demand for recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania demonstrates arrogance bordering on parody. Stein didn't lose the election so much as she disappeared in it. More than 134 million ballots have been counted so far. Stein received fewer than 1.5 million of them. That's barely a percentage point of the overall popular vote.


http://theweek.com/articles/664407/delusional-melodrama-jill-stein



She's nothing but a dupe. The people hiding behind her are the delusional ones, much like the Japanese soldiers that fought on for decades after their entire country was destroyed. But even they finally figured it out.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

@IReportYouWhine

You seem awfully concerned about a recount effort that's going nowhere, IRYW. Why is that? Could it be because you know that although your new fuhrer has been duly elected, he will enter office under the darkest cloud of illegitimacy in presidential history?

Thomas K. Shea
Thomas K. Shea

Change ? It will be dismantled 24 hours after Trump takes office you idiot

Faye Edwards
Faye Edwards

Everyone this isn't a fault of anyone getting sick. It's just se don't agree with nothing but being greedy. If you go to a Dr office why would you being charge for $400 just for a check up? It's all about want the $$. We should be happy and have a wonderful life

PJ25
PJ25

When the snowflakes, who are afraid of symbols and chalk are against something, you know its good for the majority of us. 

Dimick
Dimick

How to become a one term President before you're inaugurated:

 Appoint Tom Price to demolish healthcare for as many Americans as humanly possible.



Buttercup23
Buttercup23

The swamp is getting deeper and deeper with each passing day.   Dark Waters are ahead of us..get ready.

John Edward Woods
John Edward Woods

LOL...LOL...Georgia politics is a joke. These Clowns are still trying to figure out how to build highways.

Norris Freeman
Norris Freeman

And they thinks its going to effects blacks only.Well we will see. Start impeachment now America.

Shawn Faus
Shawn Faus

He may represent Georgia but he doesnt represent me. I have consistently written him and voted against him. He has never done a thing to address anything that matters to me.

Dwayne Pierce
Dwayne Pierce

HE SAID THE PRICE WOULD DOUBLE ON WHATEVER YOUR PAYING NOW...SO I HOPE YOU CAN AFFORD IT....SORRY IF YOU THINK YOU WERE GETTING ......LOWER......PAYMENTS......BUMMER

Wayne Morris
Wayne Morris

Now we can actual get some real healthcare reform unlike the abomination called ACA. Partisan bill entirely owned by democrats like Nancy "you got to vote for the bill to see what's in it" Pelosi.

Wayne Morris
Wayne Morris

John Washington and your an uninformed liberal.

John Washington
John Washington

" trickled down has worked every time" This is all you need to read to realize that Wayne is just a troll.

Charlotte Hudson
Charlotte Hudson

John Washington I respectfully disagree it just has not work well for 98%.

Naomi Buchanan
Naomi Buchanan

Wayne Morris.....If you actually think this "plan" will be affordable wait on it......What have Republicans have ever done to help the poor and middle class? Trickle down economics has never worked.....Paul Ryan plan is to cut medicare in 2017.....I can't wait to see what better plan they come up with...lol

Wayne Morris
Wayne Morris

Naomi Buchanan trickled down has worked every time. I'm not a novice with health insurance and there was never a bill conceived worse than ACA. It was built on lies, increased cost, decreased benefits and decreased the selection of providers. People that actual have to pay their premium are sick of it. The Trump administration will come up with a plan that is well conceived, well thought out and one that they don't lie about to get passed.

Naomi Buchanan
Naomi Buchanan

Wayne Morris ......Republicans have NO PLAN for ACA....They've been trying to appeal Obamacare in the last few years...Trump said he was going to repeal and replace it "something better" during his campaign rhetoric ...yet they have come up with NOTHING....what we do KNOW is Paul Ryan is trying to privatize Social Security and Medicare that that Americans have paid for from their own individual payroll checks, Social Security and Medicare IS NOT WELFARE....And should not be touched ....democrats are not going to stand for it http://www.newsmax.com/Politics/schumer-oppose-privatize-medicare/2016/11/25/id/760645/

Charlotte Hudson
Charlotte Hudson

Wayne Morris no trickle down has never worked and has only benefited the 1%. So sad

Shel Ash
Shel Ash

Um... you do realize that the ACA was watered down beyond belief by Republicans, right? Now they want to do their own ACA and pretend they're the saviors of America. Not buying it.

Wayne Morris
Wayne Morris

Shel Ash I hope you don't really believe that. The republicans had no voice whatsoever in drafting the bill. No this bill with all its flaws is solely on Obama and the democrats.

Wayne Morris
Wayne Morris

Charlotte Hudson the top 1% have done great under Obama's policies. Actually better than ever. You have no idea what you are talking about.