President Barack Obama is the Affordable Care Act’s biggest cheerleader, seizing every opportunity he can to tout his healthcare law. But there has been much confusion as to whether or not the commander in chief — and Congress — are even required to purchase coverage under Obamacare.
Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) asked an obvious question when discussing a new bill sponsored by Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) requiring Congress and the President to enter into the Affordable Care Act’s exchanges.
“I can’t imagine that the president wouldn’t want to be under it — after all, it’s named after him,” Enzi said, according to The Washington Examiner.
But currently, only the individual mandate applies to President Obama, the Cato Institute’s Michael Cannon told Red Alert Politics in an email. And unlike every day Americans, he is not required to enter into an exchange.
“The president kept his if-you-like-your-health-plan-you-can-keep-it promise – to himself,” Cannon, the director of health policy studies, said.
Given Obama’s willingness to tell Americans why Obamacare is so great, we dug through a variety of speeches, roundtables and town halls to remind the President why he should receive coverage under his own law. Let’s not be out of touch, Mr. President; relish in the consequences of the Affordable Care Act just like regular Americans.
Here’s 8 reasons Obama should be covered under Obamacare, as told by the man himself:
During a press conference the President gave August 9, Obama recounted the tale of a young boy he met during the bill signing for student loan interest rates. The mid-20s male told Obama he had been diagnosed with cancer and that, according to the President, the Affordable Care Act had led him into remission. Forget medical advancements and a team of very talented doctors, it’s all you, Obama. Additionally, not only do many worry the low cost of premiums will cause the standard of care to suffer, but Obamacare’s medical device excise tax thwarts innovation and medical advancements like, you know, those developed to actually cure cancer.
Not so fast, Mr. President. Contrary to the notion that Americans will have quality, affordable coverage, many have seen their premiums rise as a result of the Affordable Care Act. President Obama touted this claim while giving remarks on the five-year anniversary of the financial crisis, but Obamacare is providing another type of financial crisis. Many employers have cut their employees hours — and subsequently their wages — and the cost of healthcare has risen.
Sure, the Affordable Care Act is expected to extend healthcare coverage to 25 million Americans previously uninsured. But according to The Washington Post’s Sarah Kliff, more than 31 million will still be left without insurance by 2023. Though Obama said his bill would provide ‘universal’ healthcare — also during remarks on the five-year anniversary of the financial crisis — it seems ‘universal’ isn’t exactly the correct word.
Who doesn’t love tax credits? Millions of Americans after they have to pay back those credits, that’s who. Obama told Americans they could be eligible for new tax credits because of the Affordable Care Act during his weekly address August 17, but that still leaves uncertainty for many. According to The Associated Press, those enrolling in exchanges will have to rely on tax returns from 2012 when calculating what subsidies they qualify for. However, if there is any increase in income between then and 2014 — thereby making them ineligible for such credits — those Americans will be required to pay back what they were given years earlier, leaving many confused as to how these tax credits even work.
During a press conference August 9, President Obama celebrated the millions of Americans who will receive rebates because of the Affordable Care Act. According to The Heritage Foundation, insurers are required to spend 80 percent of premiums, and if that threshold is not met, issue a rebate to the consumer. However, the rebates create a host of issues: lead existing insurers to exit the market, decreasing competition; create new barriers for new insurers; encourage insurers to increase the cost of premiums; and invite fraud.
President Obama loves to remind Americans children can stay on their parents’ health insurance until the age of 26, staking this claim August 9 during a press conference. It’s great that thousands of young people will be insured, but allowing them to remain on their parents plan until 26 presents a quandary for the functionality of the Affordable Care Act as a whole. In order for the cost of premiums for everyone to remain low, more than 2 million young people would have to enroll in Obamacare’s exchanges. But excluding those under 26 severely limits the pool of potential healthcare consumers.
President Obama was caught red-handed with making the claim Americans can keep their doctor and was outed by his own agency. The Department of Health and Human Services posted on healthcare.gov that under Obamacare, Americans may be able to keep their own doctor, offering speculation as to whether or not health insurance consumers would be able to remain with their original physician.
Again, on the fifth anniversary of the financial crisis, Obama claimed under the Affordable Care Act, healthcare costs have actually gone down. But multiple states from Florida to Ohio to South Carolina have reported rate shock because of the healthcare law. And according to the American Enterprise Institute, Americans could see the cost of their healthcare rise by as much as 189 percent.