Congressman Griffith's Weekly E-Newsletter 2.20.17
Obamacare – One Sick Law
Obamacare is failing the American people.
No longer is it just Republicans sounding the alarm.
We are seeing insurance companies flee Obamacare, leaving even less choice and leading to higher costs. Just last week, Humana was the latest major company to announce a departure, and will no longer participate in 2018.
The insurance companies cannot continue to participate in Obamacare because it is not working.
When Humana announced its departure from the Obamacare marketplace, they cited “further signs of an unbalanced risk pool."
After Humana’s departure, Aetna’s CEO called the law a “death spiral” and added that “it’s not going to get any better; it’s getting worse.”
From the beginning, the healthcare law struggled. To keep Obamacare running this long, the Obama Administration bureaucrats constantly had to rearrange parts of the plan, trying to compensate for a law that was poorly written and flawed in design. They even raided an IRS refund account to prop up Obamacare's Cost Sharing Reduction Subsidies, in my opinion, without legal authority. Despite their attempts, the exchanges are dying because insurers have realized the exchanges are not profitable.
No longer is this just a prediction or a warning. If left alone, American healthcare choices will continue dwindling while costs continue skyrocketing. Without a cure, these problems will rapidly escalate.
The facts are clear – Obamacare did not deliver on its promises.
In 2013, President Obama said, “This law means more choice, more competition, lower costs for millions of Americans.”
As for more choice and more competition, Obamacare has resulted in the opposite. Almost one out of every three counties in America now have just one insurer and five entire states have only one insurer option in their exchange.
And as for lower costs, as a result of Obamacare, premiums have gone up by an average of 25% this year, according to an October report from the Department of Health and Human Services, an agency of the Federal Government.
In addition to the premium increase, $1 trillion dollars’ worth of new taxes have been piled onto families and job creators. Failing health insurance co-ops set up for Obamacare have cost American taxpayers $1.8 billion. Of the 23 health insurance co-ops that were created, only 5 remain in business.
It’s not just Republicans who have noticed the failures. President Bill Clinton said, “So you've got this crazy system…people who are out there busting it, sometimes 60 hours a week, wind up with their premiums doubled and their coverage cut in half. It's the craziest thing in the world.”
Then Minnesota Democrat Governor Mark Dayton followed up with, “The reality is the Affordable Care Act is no longer affordable for increasing numbers of people.”
Back in 2008, in Bristol, Virginia, Obama told the residents of the 9th District “We’ll lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year.”
He failed to mention that nearly every family would have to endure high deductibles and copay plans in order to afford insurance, and then still see premiums rise.
We are putting serious work into passing a new healthcare law, unlike the rushed, unread, and sloppy Obamacare.
Repeal of Obamacare and its replacement will not happen overnight, it will be rolled out to ensure that coverage will not be yanked away from those in need. Furthermore, popular and successful parts of the law can be preserved- particularly the protections for those with pre-existing conditions and an allowance for parents to cover their children until the age of 26. In addition, our plan will make sure all Americans can have coverage.
An improved healthcare law, putting patients and families in charge of their care, will bring American healthcare a much needed cure with stable costs, more options, and protection of patients with pre-existing conditions.
Nothing is more important than you and your family’s health.
Many Republicans and I were elected, in part, for our promise to replace Obamacare. It is our promise to improve America’s ailing healthcare system.
If you have questions, concerns, or comments, feel free to contact my office. You can call my Abingdon office at 276-525-1405 or my Christiansburg office at 540-381-5671. To reach my office via email, please visit my website at www.morgangriffith.house.gov.