June 5, 2014

Remember ObamaCare? Yeah, That’s Still News

Other news has bumped ObamaCare from the headlines, but it’s still doing damage.

The outrageous prisoner deal may have bumped the Veterans Affairs scandal and ObamaCare from the headlines, but both items are still causing trouble. When the oddly titled federal “marketplace” for ObamaCare opened last October, the ensuing disaster was such that Americans who lived in states that had set up their own exchanges were no doubt glad they didn’t have to deal with the federal exchange. The “marketplace” to buy insurance was a farce anyway – it sold insurance many people wouldn’t have bought if they hadn’t lost the plan they already had, but that’s another story.

Now that a few months have passed, though, it seems state exchanges are catching up to Healthcare.gov’s nosedive. And they’re hoping the federal government will buy them out of their misery. As National Review’s Veronique de Rugy reports, “[F]ive state exchanges – Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada and Oregon – are in need of serious fixes. And it won’t be cheap.” Indeed, it will cost nearly a quarter billion dollars to fix their messes or join the federal exchange. Considering how bad the federal exchange is, any desire to join it must indicate a pre-existing condition nigh on terminal.

Surprisingly, though, given how notoriously inefficient the federal government is, states are actually more inefficient when it comes to the cost of enrolling people in exchanges. For example the average cost-per-enrollment for Healthcare.gov was $647 in taxpayer dollars. Pricey, yes, but nowhere near the $1,503 per-enrollee average for the state exchanges – and far below the astronomical $23,899 taxpayer tab per enrollee in Hawaii, the most expensive-per-capita among state exchanges.

Yet even a move towards the federal exchange won’t approach the starting line to solving ObamaCare’s unsolvable woes. Remember those eight million people who theoretically signed up for ObamaCare? Turns out that more than two million of those signups have “data inconsistencies” related to income or to immigration and citizenship status. As a result, enrollees may be getting the wrong subsidies, or subsidies may be going to illegal aliens. Shocker, we know.

But this isn’t the worst deception. Spotlighting Obama’s BIG Lie that under his plan, no taxpayer dollars would fund abortions, taxpayer dollars are, you guessed it, funding abortions. As Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Casey Mattox writes, every consumer in Connecticut buying an ObamaCare-compliant plan “will be required to pay a separate surcharge that the insurer must use solely to pay for abortions.” This is a cost insurers must calculate separately and charge to the insured, allowing Obama to claim that taxpayer dollars are not funding the slaughter of innocents.

Insurance companies, however, are not permitted to disclose to customers how much the surcharge is or whether the plan includes abortion coverage. In Connecticut, there are no known abortion-free plans, and this is possibly also the case in Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island and Wyoming.

Indeed, the more we see of ObamaCare, the more apparent it becomes that broken promises are too kind a description for what Barack Obama and his administration have delivered to the American people. Outright lies is more accurate.

As the disaster continues to unfold, conservative House Republicans are now pushing for a vote on an alternative health care plan that would fully repeal ObamaCare and replace it with a plan that, among other things, expands health savings accounts, allows Americans to purchase health plans across state lines, provides tax deductions for health care costs, bans federal funding for abortion, and increases federal support to help cover those with pre-existing conditions.

While undoing the damage already done by ObamaCare won’t be an easy task, the GOP plan is a strong step away from the deadly precipice of the president’s disastrous hallmark and towards a system more in keeping with self-determination and the free market. And as for keeping your plan if you like it? Not to worry; thanks to ObamaCare, we’ll soon be hard pressed to find anyone who actually likes his or her plan.

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