They're Still Lying About ObamaCare
In the run-up to the Supreme Court ruling on the Obama health law, the White House launched a series of ads on the controversial law's virtues, as if to say to the public, "You'll be sorry." Don't be bamboozled.
The ads spotlight two provisions: one protecting Americans with pre-existing conditions, the other allowing young adults to stay on their parents' health plans until age 26. In truth, you can have these protections no matter what happens to ObamaCare.
And they're just two one-liners in a 2,572-page law.
Pre-existing conditions: Of course, people with hypertension, diabetes and other pre-existing conditions should be able to get health insurance. Most already can.
Less than 1 percent of the U.S. population has been denied coverage for a pre-existing condition, according to federal Health and Human Services data. Even before ObamaCare, no one with a pre-existing condition could be barred from employer-provided coverage (which is how most people get their insurance) or from Medicare and Medicaid.
Denials came only in the small individual insurance market (serving 5 percent of the population). Even there, four out of five people with pre-existing conditions had no trouble getting coverage, according to HHS data.
Nevertheless, the Obama law set up a temporary federal high-risk pool for applicants with pre-existing conditions. It's been a flop. The first year, only 8,014 people signed up in the entire United States.
Even if you believe the administration claim to have helped 50,000 people with medical conditions gain coverage in the past two years, that's just 50,000 out of a population of more than 300 million.
The pre-existing-condition problem has been overblown by politicians. It's the old drill: Create a crisis, and then claim to solve it.
And states are already taking care of it. Thirty-five states have high-risk pools to help people with pre-existing conditions get affordable, subsidized insurance, and those programs can be expanded and adequately funded to reach everyone in need. High-risk pools are a smarter approach than barring insurers from considering an applicant's medical condition. The five states that have done that (including New York) have the highest health premiums in the nation.
Staying on parents' plans: What about the young woman in the White House ads who says she wants to stay on her parents' plan after college?
The one-liner in ObamaCare requiring insurers to allow young adults to stay on parents' plans was an afterthought. It has proved popular, but also pushed up premiums. If ObamaCare is gone, insurers will be free to offer the feature to customers who want to pay for it.
It's time to discard the 2,572-page Obama health law and replace it with 20 pages in honest English that members of Congress and the public will actually read. The overwhelming majority of Americans has no idea what the current law says.
How could they? It's not just the length that's undemocratic. It's the gobbledeygook language, which allowed politicians to slip in pork-barrel spending and exemptions for themselves and their allies, and then claim that a couple of one-liners make the whole thing worthwhile.
To find out more about Betsy McCaughey and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.
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