President Obama is disconnected from the harsh reality that his health care law has created for people. Almost two weeks ago, speaking about his health care law, the president said:
“Part of what's bizarre about this whole thing is, we haven't had a lot of conversation about the horrors of ObamaCare because none of them have come to pass.”
None of them have come to pass – I just want to emphasize what he said. Apparently that message didn’t make it very far because I hear a drastically different story from folks across Wyoming and other parts of the country.
People like a rancher from Gillette who complained to me that her and her husband’s health insurance went up from $11,000 per year to $20,000 a year with a deductible of $6,500. How is this "affordable""?, she wrote.
People like a retired nurse from Casper who told me that if you add the premium increases and deductible increases up for her and her husband it’s $36,000 per year. She wrote that health care is unaffordable, it’s a huge burden and worry. How can people afford to pay more for health care than they make in a year?
She said Obamacare does not provide them coverage for their medical needs and added that it goes against everything they believe in for America.
People like the man from Cheyenne who says the President’s health care law is forcing him to choose between paying for his health care OR paying for his mortgage.
People like the small business owner in Newcastle who said before the Affordable Health Care law she could afford to pay for her employees’ health care. After the law went into force, she couldn’t. Her employees couldn’t afford it either so they might leave for a bigger company and the small business owner may have to sell out to a bigger company. She loves her community and wants to stay an active part of it. She is discouraged by the situation this health care law has created and is asking for help.
These are real people with real families. I did not write their story. They and many, many, many more like them contacted me. They are telling me and they are telling all of us in Washington to do something about this unworkable health care law that is far from affordable, breaks promises and makes their lives harder. I’m listening to them. So should the torch carriers of this federally mandated “dream” that was broken before it began.
Today’s Supreme Court ruling on the King v. Burwell case is surprising, but it reminds all of us who warned against this health care law that we will have our work cut out for us to move our country away from Obamacare’s failed policies. This law was written and implemented in its entirety by one party and has been informed from the start by ideology rather than reality. Yet, it has fallen to us to make things better and help people get through these difficulties caused by this law.
The federal government cannot possibly know what’s best for each individual and, as we have seen, a one-size-fits all dictate doesn’t work. The Wyoming folks whose stories I just relayed and the millions more like them from every state are a testament to that.
Our focus is offering each of them new choices for quality, affordable health care. Our focus is not protecting this failed law, this busted political legacy. We want to protect families as we get rid of Obamacare and transition away from this fiasco. (That’s what it is as illustrated by the testimonials I talked about earlier.) It is time for Republicans and Democrats to truly deliver on the president’s broken promise of a health system that expands access and promotes quality, patient-centered care, while actually bringing costs down. This is an opportunity for both parties to work together and put in place real solutions that rely on these principles.
For too long, the debate over health care has placed politics before the best interests of patients. No matter the court’s ruling, it is time for Democrats and Republicans to deliver what the president promised but ultimately failed to deliver. We need a health system that expands access and promotes quality patient-centered care, while actually bringing costs down. We must allow states the freedom and flexibility to ensure hardworking Americans can get the care that they need. It is time for both parties to work together on real solutions that rely on these principles. We should move forward on a bipartisan basis to provide more choices and a better health care system for hardworking Americans.