Republicans Sabotage Obamacare So They Can Claim It Doesn’t Work
Did your Obamacare premiums go up this year? Blame Republicans.
In their effort to destroy President Obama’s signature legislative achievement, Republicans voted to repeal the law a bazillion times since taking over the House. They’ve also filed lawsuit after lawsuit hoping that a federal court will see things their way and strike it down.
However, both efforts have failed miserably as the Supreme Court has ruled against Republicans in two major cases. Plus President Obama would simply veto any repeal bill should it reach his desk.
Republicans desperately want to use Obamacare as a campaign talking point this year. The only problem is that Obamacare is turning out to be a successful healthcare program that is becoming as ingrained in our society as Medicare and Medicaid as more and more Americans sign up and get health insurance.
According to the Washington Post, more than 11.3 million Americans have signed up for Obamacare, also known as the Affordable Care Act.
Furthermore, CNBC reports that “fewer than 1 in 10 Americans lacked health insurance in 2015, the first time ever in the nation’s history that the uninsured rate has fallen so low, and a clear sign of Obamacare’s impact.”
It’s a stunning victory for a program that has only been in full effect since 2014. Much of that success is due to the Medicaid expansion part of the law, which means even less people would be uninsured if Republican-controlled states had not refused to expand Medicaid for their own citizens.
Obamacare has also created jobs despite Republican doomsday predictions.
All of these successes not only makes Obamacare more popular, they make it harder for Republicans to repeal it without suffering major consequences on Election Day.
That’s why Republicans have devised an underhanded new strategy in their continuing obsession to kill Obamacare.
Talking Points Memo reports:
In late 2014, Republicans inserted a provision in budget omnibus legislation that tinkered with what’s known as the risk corridors program, which buoys insurers who spend more money than they planned for on covering populations that are sicker than anticipated.
The provision resurfaced in the political discourse last fall when Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) took it on a victory tour during his presidential campaign, bragging that he stopped a health insurance “bailout.” The legislation did not so much end the program as screw up the mechanism by which money can be carved out to fund it. The risk corridors can now only be funded by transferring profits from insurers whose populations cost them less than expected, and the government can no longer pull from savings elsewhere in the law to make up the difference.
Washington and Lee University School of Law health law expert Timothy Jost explained to TPM that while the tweak isn’t near enough to destroy the law, it has caused “significant problems,” and is a “major factor contributing to premium increases this year.”
Basically, Republicans are deliberately making minor tweaks to Obamacare mechanisms so that certain parts of the program become weaker than they were originally. New reports then come out showing that premiums went up. Then Republicans use those new reports to brag about how Obamacare is broken even though they were the ones who broke it in the first place.
So if you discover that your healthcare premiums have risen this year, you can blame Republicans for that and you can make sure they never screw with your healthcare again by punishing them at the voting booth this November.
Source: Stephen D Foster Jr