The passage of “Trumpcare” by the House of Representatives sucked up most of the attention this past week, but there were other things going on that will likely have a deeper and more lasting impact.
That is not to belittle what just happened with the AHCA vote, but as anyone who has seen Schoolhouse Rock understands, this bill has a way to go before it’s law. As E.J. Dionne said in The Washington Post, “the Anti-Health-Care Bill passed on Thursday bids to be the most remarkable redistribution of income in congressional history, from the poor and middle class to the very wealthy.” He added that this heartless vote will define the House Republicans and the Cook Political Report said the vote moved ratings on 20 House seats more favorably toward the Democrats.
So, yes, the healthcare vote could have a lasting impact on Republicans, but the more troubling impact for all of us came on the international front where we continued to turn our backs on 100 years of global leadership.
On Wednesday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson gave a speech to State Department employees saying that too much reliance on human rights principles really creates obstacles to our ability to advance our national security interests, and our economic interests.
Tillerson’s move away from promoting human rights simply follows one of Trump’s few consistent policy directions. During the campaign Trump said the U.S. didn’t have the right to lecture other countries on human rights because things are so bad here now. In the past week, Mother Jones reported Trump renamed the White House office of “multilateral affairs and human rights” as the office of “international organizations and alliances.”