Sunday, November 17, 2013


The Washington Post is reporting that “[t]he Obama administration will consider the new federal insurance marketplace a success if 80 percent of users can buy health-care plans online.” A success for whom? For the Democrats? For the Obama Administration? For Obama's "legacy"? Not for the unlucky 20% who need health insurance and can’t buy it.

As JohnE over at Ace of Spades points out:

This, of course, includes the nearly 5 million people who have already been booted off their plans due to Obamacare. I suppose it's a success if 20% of them, or 1 million people, are unable to purchase insurance because the website is glitchy. Wait, wasn't this law passed in large part to "help those who were unable to purchase health insurance"? I seem to recall that being a thing.

Oh, well. Eggs and omelettes.

Today on Meet The Press, Nancy Pelosi insisted that the health insurance policies being cancelled were not because of the Affordable Care Act. You have to read her whole exchange with David Gregory to get a sense of how bizarre it is but here’s a snippet:

But that doesn't mean that there was anything in the law that said if you like what you had before 2010 you couldn't keep it.

Here’s what NBC said two days ago in an investigative report entitled “Insurers, state officials say cancellation of health care policies just as they predicted”:

In comments filed in August and December 2010, America’s Health Insurance Plans -- a trade group representing 1,300 insurance plans — urged the administration to “reconsider” grandfathering rules because they were too stringent to allow many to keep their policies.

In the first round of comments, AHIP stated that under the administration’s proposed regulations, “The percentage of individual market policies losing grandfathered status … will likely exceed the 40-67 percent range” and warned that could cause “disruptions” for those who wish to keep their policies.

When those proposed rules weren’t changed, AHIP again wrote in December, “We believe that more can and should be done to protect the interests of consumers who wish to maintain their existing coverage.”

That “first round of comments” happened in August of 2010. CNN reminds us that Republicans reacted to AHIP’s warnings shortly thereafter:

Senate Democrats voted unanimously three years ago to support the Obamacare rule that is largely responsible for some of the health insurance cancellation letters that are going out.

In September 2010, Senate Republicans brought a resolution to the floor to block implementation of the grandfather rule, warning that it would result in canceled policies and violate President Barack Obama’s promise that people could keep their insurance if they liked it.

In the round-table segment of Meet The Press, David Gregory said this:

And people will say this is like Katrina; I think it's more like Iraq. That was about life and death, this is not. That's not the comparison. The comparison is everybody looked at Bush through the prism of Iraq. Here, I think people are going to look at Obama through the implementation of Obamacare. He wants to talk about something else.

Gregory seems to be saying that Katrina was about life and death, but the Affordable Care Act is not.

That’s not what President Obama was claiming when he argued that we had to pass the Act. Speaking about a campaign supporter who died of breast cancer, he said:

She didn’t have insurance. She couldn’t afford it, so she had put off having the kind of exams that she needed. And she had fought a tough battle for four years. All through the campaign she was fighting it, but finally she succumbed to it.

It turns out Obama didn’t have his story straight but these kinds of anecdotes are exactly what sold people on ObamaCare: people who don’t have health insurance can’t get the health care they need and sometimes that means they die. And the Affordable Care Act was going to insure that didn’t happen any longer. That sounds like life and death to me.

The Administration that thinks leaving 20% of the people who need health insurance hanging is “a success”; the California Congresswoman who continues to lie about the damage done to those who are losing the health insurance she swears she wants everyone to have; the television pundit who sees health insurance as a political football rather than a matter of life and death. None of them seem to realize that the 20%; the cancelled policy-holders; the currently insured and currently uninsured whose only hope for insurance they can afford depends on getting through a broken website and praying there’s something on the other side they can afford - all these are human beings whose lives are being upended by the hubris, dishonesty, and incompetence of those who conceived, sold, and implemented ObamaCare.

I wonder if those responsible will understand the reality of what they’ve done if people start dying, or will that, also, be brushed aside as politics.