New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced a universal health care plan, promising free or affordable medical coverage to all citizens and non-citizens alike. His “plan” is dubbed “NYC Care,” and is aimed at the over 600,000 people currently residing in New York who have opted out of purchasing insurance, can’t afford the premiums available on the state’s health-care exchange, or are ineligible for coverage because they are not citizens of the United States.
De Blasio went on MSNBC’s notorious “Morning Joe” program and touted his “public health insurance option that can reach the hundreds of thousands that are, right now, not in any kind of health insurance.” He stated, “We also have a way to provide direct health care to a lot of our neighbors, who happen to be undocumented,” adding, “They’re still a part of our community, they need health care, their families need health care.”
De Blasio said that his plan won’t just provide residents with a primary care physician, but will give them access to specialty care, mental health services, and other services…and will be “seamless.”
De Blasio was asked a number of questions about the program at the news conference. One reporter asked who would receive the free coverage and who would pay for it. The mayor replied that the premium scale “will slide to zero for people who don’t have resources. For people who have the ability to pay, we’ll be expecting that people pay what they can.” Well, at least he’s got that nailed down. What could possibly go awry? When the reporter had the temerity to ask a follow-up question, De Blasio responded: “We’re first getting people health care. I want to make sure that’s really, really clear. First, we’re getting you your health care. Then we’re working out the finances.”
That’s how it works in real life, too. “Honey, first we’re getting the Maserati, then we’ll work out the finances.” And, “First we’re getting the mansion/yacht/cocaine/fill in the blank, then we’ll work out the finances.” Ready…fire!...aim.
De Blasio said he will shortly be unveiling another new plan to be paid for by those New Yorkers who have the ability to do so. This one, he said proudly, “will provide free food, clothing, shelter, candy, birth control, marijuana, lawn maintenance, and oral sex” to “everyone in the world who needs these.”
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