President Obama said, “The package we’ve put together” will “start bending the cost curve on health care” and “cut the deficit by a trillion dollars.” Even a sympathetic Congressional Budget Office has finally put the nail in the coffin of that howler.
At the time Obama made the claim, we all knew it was specious, and study after study came out showing just how fraudulent it was. There was the double counting on Medicare, the “Doc Fix” scam and a host of others. When Rep. Paul Ryan asked the CBO to rescore Obamacare with more accurate assumptions, it didn’t quite make the grade — by hundreds of billions of dollars, which, of course, are but rounding errors for the federal spending virtuoso in the White House.
Many of us knew at the time that Obama’s drive for socialized medicine had nothing to do with reducing spending — the last thing that is ever on his mind. We knew that it wasn’t about increasing access to care — because socialized medicine schemes always ultimately reduce people’s access to quality care.
Looked at in a light most favorable to Obama’s intentions, it was but another utopian scheme to put everyone on a level playing field. Looked at honestly and realistically, it was a Trojan horse to expand government control over our private lives that would result in less, worse and more expensive care.
No one who has watched Obama and the titanic leftist juggernaut he has unleashed on our beloved America thought he was promoting Obamacare to bend the health care curve down. If that had been the case, he wouldn’t have had to go to such lengths to make it appear as though this budget buster was actually a plan for cost containment.
Indeed, we knew he would go to any lengths to pass this bill, even if it ended up costing two or three times more than he falsely projected. And what do you know? Just a few years later, as this legislative Frankenstein awaits the verdict of the Supreme Court, the CBO released a report this week admitting it will cost about twice as much as Obama twisted its arm into calculating a few years ago.
The legislation will not cost $940 billion as originally advertised. It will cost $1.76 trillion, and that is a conservative estimate.
In a word, folks, this is outrageous. If cost were Obama’s concern, wouldn’t he come before the American people now, admit his error and urge Congress to repeal this ill-conceived monster? How about for the sake of truth in advertising he at least change the name of the law from the “Affordable Care Act” to the “We Can’t Afford This Act”?
Betsy McCaughey, a health care expert and a vigorous opponent of Obamacare from the beginning, said that the original cost projections of the plan were “a shell game” and that the CBO’s revised report “inches closer to the truth.”
This perennially defiant and Alinskyite administration didn’t back up at all with these new figures. Jeanne Lambrew, deputy director of the White House Office of Health Reform, said on the White House blog, “The bottom line is clear: the Affordable Care Act will reduce our deficit, control health costs, and make health care more affordable.” Lambrew quoted a pair of consulting firms that said Obamacare would not result in employers dropping their insurance coverage, which is not only untrue but brings us to another major blow Obamacare suffered this week.
The recently released Health Care Reform Survey 2011-2012 of the Willis Group reports, “Survey respondents indicate that into the second year of Health Care Reform implementation, less than 30 percent of employers were able to maintain grandfathered status of their health care plans.”
Did you hear that? It’s not quite what the White House propaganda blog is telling us. According to Willis, the “rapid loss of grandfathered status far outpaces The Department of Health & Human Services’ expectations.” The department projected that 78 percent of employers would retain their grandfathered status by the end of 2011, that 62 percent would by the end of 2012 and that 49 percent would by the end of 2013.
Opponents warned this would happen, and disingenuous supporters of the bill ridiculed their warnings as partisan fear-mongering. But the facts are sometimes a disturbing inconvenience. Willis says that the accelerated loss of grandfathered status “suggests that employers have had to make many plan changes to offset cost increases,” and employers have likely chosen to forfeit their grandfathered status to control costs.
These are purely scandalous developments, and as one of my friends remarked, in saner times this would spell Obama’s political end. Indeed, it would guarantee a Democratic primary challenge.
It would have been bad enough had Obama told us he was hellbent on establishing socialized medicine, even if it would cost the country more and result in people’s losing their choice of plans. But he didn’t, and he ought to be held to account — politically — for his duplicity.