In politics, Democrats have always found it easy to play Santa Claus with other people’s money.
The only play in their playbook is to just throw money at problems and demonize Republicans for acting like adults and trying to keep a lid on spending. Or invent problems out of whole cloth, then throw money at them and demonize Republicans.
The recent vote to cap the cost of insulin at $35 a month for people on Medicare or with private insurance offers an example – which prompted U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida to offer a novel solution.
While Democrats welcome any seeming giveaway at taxpayer expense, the proposal, introduced by Georgia Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock, even bothered some in his own party.
Texas Democratic Rep. Lloyd Doggett sounded almost Republican when, according to Kaiser News Network, he noted, “This bill does not lower the price of insulin by one penny. It just shifts the burden of paying for the insulin off of the shoulders of insured insulin users, and shifts it on to the rest of all of us who are paying insurance premiums.”
Meanwhile, Sen. Susan Collins, a Maine Republican who frequently sides with Democrats and supports this reform, also noted that the bill does nothing for the uninsured, another constituency the Democrats constantly appeal to.
Nonetheless, the House last week voted 232-193 for Warnock’s bill, sending it to the Senate.
As NBC News noted, “Republicans argue that the measure wouldn’t adequately address rising prescription drug prices and that it would raise premiums and worsen inflation” – which is also the argument made by Big Pharma.
NBC quoted comments by North Carolina GOP Rep. Virginia Foxx, who said during floor debate, “This bill is an exemplar of the fact that they [Democrats] want the government to control our lives in every way they possibly can.” The bill, Foxx added, is “a massive power grab that will lead our country one step closer to socialized medicine.”
But Gaetz, a Fort Walton Beach Republican, offered a different approach, as he explained why he voted down Warnock’s plan in his newsletter to his constituents.
“During this time of crippling inflation, high energy prices, and failed leadership from the White House, the powers that be are struggling for solutions. Unfortunately, the latest purported solution on the House floor yesterday not only ignores our most salient problems confronting the American public, it subscribes to the narrow Democrat dogma of socialist-adjacent, top-down economics,” Gaetz said.
The Affordable Insulin Now Act is “another big government bill that claims to serve the American people by subverting basic economic theory with the proposed codification of government price controls.”
Instead of bigger and more expensive government, Gaetz argued, “Lifestyle changes en masse would expeditiously lower demand and the subsequent prices of insulin.”
He continued, “90-95% of people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes, which ‘can be prevented or delayed with healthy lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, eating healthy food, and being active.’”
“Arbitrary price controls are no substitute for individual weight control.”
“To be clear, my condolences go out to all 37.3 million Americans who have incurred type 2 diabetes in their lives or who were born with type 1 diabetes,” added Gaetz.
“However, the Democrats have misdiagnosed the cause of higher insulin prices and issued an FDR-esque proven to fail ‘solution.’ Insulin price increases have more to do with increased consumer demand than the bad behavior of Big Pharma, which I am quick to condemn.”
“In other words, the price of insulin increases as waistlines increase.”
Gaetz concluded, the Democrats’ “posturing” essentially “victimizes insulin payees as people with an uncontrollable disease that are being taken advantage of and need Big Brother to throw them a raft.”
“While I empathize with all Americans suffering from disease and will continue to fight Big Pharma, I voted against [the bill]. I will not see a reemergence of FDR price controls and join the Democrats in their attempt to pave the Road to Serfdom.”