Lies About Obamacareby Denise Early on Sep. 09, 2013, under Health
Two weeks ago, the Arizona Daily Star ran two opinion pieces on Obamacare. One was for Obamacare and the other presented a long list of reasons to be against Obamacare. The problem with this list was that just about every statement was a lie.
I guess when a person gives themselves a fancy title, they get published in newspapers without anyone checking whether or not their statements are true. The author of the piece, Amy Ridenour, has a fancy title: Chairman of the National Center for Public Policy Research. The only “research” she seems to have done is to come up with new lies about Obamacare.
Here are some of Ms. Ridenour’s lies:
President Obama … has “delayed the cap on how much an individual or family with insurance can be required to spend out-of-pocket”. This is not true. The delay is being granted only to companies that already provide health insurance for their employees but use two different providers for health insurance and drug coverage.
These companies and their insurance carriers said their computer systems are not yet able to merge medical and drug costs in order to determine when a person would meet their maximum out-of-pocket spending on both medical care and prescriptions. So a small number of companies will get a one-year waiver.
“He’s delayed the exchanges through which small businesses were supposed to be able to find affordable health insurance.” This is not true. The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) exchanges will be open for business on October 1st.
What has been delayed is a larger list of options for small businesses and their employees. The plan is for employees of small companies to have choices more like large companies. Employees of many large companies (and federal employees) can choose from several insurance carriers instead of just one. People working for small companies have never had this option and the SHOP wants to give it to them – but not in 2014.
“He’s delayed checks to determine whether people who claim to qualify for subsidies actually qualify.” This is not true. All federally-run exchanges will check applicants’ income with IRS data. The 15 states (at last count) that will run their own exchanges have the option to delay until 2015, this link to IRS data. This decision is based on getting the state exchanges hooked up to the IRS data.
If a person receives a subsidy based on inaccurate income information, or if their income rises during the year, their next tax filing will catch any overpayments. They will have to repay any subsidy overpayments when they file their taxes the next year.
“The President raided Medicare to disguise the true cost of the ACA.” This is an old lie and still not true. The Affordable Care Act reduces Medicare spending – and Republican budgets include these cost savings in their own projections for Medicare spending over the next ten years. The billions of dollars in “savings” come from changes in how hospitals are paid by Medicare and how much insurance companies are paid for Medicare Advantage plans. There is no “raiding” of Medicare.
THE TRUTH IS….
The truth is that 90% of the uninsured in Arizona will get help with their health insurance premiums. And many of these people work for themselves or small companies that do not offer health insurance benefits.
The truth is that over 300,000 poor people in Arizona will get health insurance through AHCCCS. Without this coverage, hospitals in Arizona face rising uncompensated care costs and uncertain futures.
The truth is that 14 million young adults have already benefited from Obamcare by being allowed to stay on their parents’ employer health insurance up to age 26.
The truth is that Obamacare is far from perfect – but the solution is not to repeal or defund it. Why not work to fix parts of it and make it better? Why not encourage people to check out their health insurance options and the premium help they will get? Why not see if it works?
Those who are so vehemently against Obamacare that they would lie over and over again seem very desperate. So desperate they threaten to shut down the government, just so millions of Americans won’t have an opportunity to get health insurance.
9/13 UPDATE: Amy Ridenour has responded to my accusations by addressing each one on her own blog. She says she’s right because I admit there have been delays in various parts of Obamacare. The problem with her argument is that she misleads with each of her statements in her opinion piece. In her Arizona Daily Star opinion piece she implies that the entire cap on out-of-pocket expenses has been delayed. She implies that the entire SHOP has been delayed. And she implies that there will be no verification of income when people apply for premium subsidies. If readers of her opinion piece do some “research” they will find that her statements are misleading. She sees them as being partly true. I call them misleading. I call them lies because she knows she is misrepresenting the facts to fit her agenda.