More than 9 months after President Obama signed the Affordable Healthcare Act into law, the controversy and debate over the law better known as Obamacare is far from being over.
On Wednesday the U.S. House of Representatives voted 245-189 to pass H.R. 2, which would repeal Obamacare. It is widely assumed that the Senate will not pass the legislation- if Majority Leader Harry Reid allows it to come to a vote at all.
Democrats, who have used “creative accounting” and outright lies to try to convince the American people that the bill they forced down their throats will create jobs, lower costs, decrease the deficit and increase coverage, resorted to angry rhetoric and even more lies in their attempts to now convince voters that repealing the law will increase the deficit and kill Americans.
Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) opined, “… even the title of their legislation, H.R. 2, ‘job-killing’ — this is killing Americans if we take this away, if we repeal this bill.” Lee also tried to claim that repeal would violate the Fifth Amendment by depriving people “of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law”, a specious argument to be sure.
Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN)- who is Jewish- had the unmitigated audacity to compare the Republican Majority in the House to the Nazis when he said, “They don’t like the truth so they summarily dismiss it. They say it’s a government takeover of healthcare. A big lie just like Goebbels. You say it enough and you repeat the lie, repeat the lie, repeat the lie until eventually people believe it. Like blood libel, that’s the same kind of thing. The Germans said enough about the Jews and people believed it, and you have the Holocaust. You tell a lie over and over again.”
Speaking of the individual mandate to purchase health insurance that is the backbone of Obamacare’s financing, Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) tried to argue that the Preamble and 14th Amendment of the Constitution give Congress the right to require Americans to purchase a product that they may not want. He began with, “Well, when you start off with the Preamble of the Constitution, you talk about the pursuit of happiness.” Then went on to say, “You go to the 14th Amendment–it’s equal protection under the law and we have not repealed the 14th Amendment. People have a right to have health care. It’s not a privilege but a right.”
Okay, so first of all the phrase “pursuit of happiness” is not in the Premable to the Constitution and second it cuts both ways. If you force someone to purchase healthcare insurance, or any product, that they do not want then you deprive them of happiness. As for the 14th Amendment argument, health care insurance is not a right. No one is deprived of healthcare in the United States. Even an illegal immigrant or a convicted felon is given healthcare if they need it, regardless of ability to pay.
The lies about Obamacare are myriad, but they are coming from those that have proposed and passed it, not it’s opponents. Democrats claim that their healthcare “overhaul” will lower costs. What they don’t tell you is that they use 10 years worth of taxes to pay for 6 years worth of benefits. They also don’t count the cost of enacting the legislation in terms of the bureaucracy and I.R.S agents that will be necessary to enforce it.
Democrats claim that Obamacare will prevent insurance companies from denying coverage to those with preexisting conditions. What they don’t tell you is that while you will be able to get insurance, the company will NOT cover your preexisting condition. What this means is if you have asthma, an insurance company will give you an insurance policy with a rider that excludes asthma.
Rep. George Miller (D-CA) seems not to have heard the voters’ message that government control and bureaucracy is not what they want. Speaking against repeal he ignored the vast bureaucracy that Obamacare creates when he said: “You want to talk about bureaucracy, ladies and gentlemen. That’s why this legislation is growing in popularity because small businesses see, senior citizens see, parents with children under 26 they see a chance to liberate themselves from the most arbitrary, the most capricious, the most bureaucratic system in our entire free economy. And that’s the insurance companies. Everybody has been run around the block by their insurance companies. It’s something they all share. It’s almost the problems they share with their cable company. Not quite. But it’s not as dramatic here because this is life and death. This is the security of your family. This is whether or not you can change jobs. This is whether or not your children will be protected. This is whether or not your parents will be able to afford their drug because that’s what this legislation enables and gives the freedom to American families to have.”
This diatribe is chock full of lies. The idea that the legislation is getting more popular is just the first. Just the opposite is true as the public learns more about what is in the law. Senior citizens are learning that in order to pay for this legislation that $500 billion has been cut from Medicare Advantage. The American people do not believe that treating adults up to the age of 26 as children is a good idea. Given the choice of dealing with the bureaucracy of an insurance company, which is regulated by state laws and free market forces or that of the federal government, which would you choose?
The passage of this repeal bill is far from the end of the fight over healthcare. This debate will continue right into the 2012 presidential campaign. It remains to be seen whether the Senate will take up this legislation. But what is certain is that Republicans will continue to work to repeal and defund elements of the legislation, while proposing market driven alternatives that will address the real issues, which are with health insurance, not healthcare.
In addition 27 states are now suing the federal government over the constitutionality of Obamacare. 26 states led by Florida are involved in one suit, based on the federal government’s claims that they can regulate health insurance via the Commerce Clause and that the Medicaid expansion violates the 10th Amendment. Meanwhile Virginia is suing separately based on their contention that Obamacare violates a state law that says individuals cannot be forced to purchase health insurance. Eventually these lawsuits will wind their way to the Supreme Court where it is likely that the States will win by a 5-4 margin.