Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Obama’s Refusal to Negotiate over Obamacare
Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate.
John Fitzgerald Kenndy (1917-1933), Inaugural Address, January 20, 1916
President Obama’s assertion that the ObamaCare s is “settled, ” and nothing more needs to done is absurd on the face of it.
Fifty seven percent of Americans disapprove of the law and say it needs to be fixed. Half of its provisions have been delayed. The Obama administration has already altered 19 provisions. Its computer shortcomings are deep and pervasive. Obama says its IT problems are mere “glitches.” But Scott Gottlieb, MD, a resident fellow of the America Enterprise Institute, and Michael Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security until early this year, differ. In a September 30 Wall Street Journal article, entitled “ObamaCare’s Technology Mess,” Gottlieb and Astrue say,
“President Obama is bracing Americans for inevitable problems as the Affordable Care Act rolls out this week, but what he calls "glitches" are hardly routine. Information technology is ObamaCare's Achilles' heel. The faulty IT will expose Americans to lost data, attempts to enroll online that fail and the risk of fraud.”
ObamaCare offers care and subsidies to 48 million Americans, but it raises costs for millions of other Americans. It outrages America’s major labor unions. It creates massive uncertainties among American businesses, employers, employees, and retirees. It causes 90% of new employees to be hired part-time. It exempts federal lawmakers and their staffs from ObamaCare and retains their federal subsidies. Medicare actuaries say it will raise premiums for a family of four by $7450 compared to the $2500 premium reductions promised. People are losing their doctors and health plans. It is already 45% over budget. It throws a wet blanket over hiring and economic growth. It creates tremendous angst among patients, physicians, hospitals, and other health care stakeholders. It says even the young and healthy must pay for ten “essential benefit” whether they need them or not. Its “mandates” pose problems worth discussing.
There is plenty to talk about. Mr. President, you have nothing to fear by negotiating. Your law’s provisions covering the uninsured and those with pre-existing illnesses under their parents’ plan are popular and will be retained.
Your law needs to be talked about, discussed, parsed, and compromised – person to person, Democrat to Republican, Obama to Boehner – at the White House. ObamaCare needs to be fixed. It needs to be kept where the keeping is good. It needs to be negotiated into a law that the American people can understand and approve of.
Mr. President, please come to the table and talk. We are not a unilateral government, We are a bilateral, and a multilateral government, if you include the people. The people, Mr. President , want you and your political opposition, to talk and to fix the problems.
Tweet: President Obama saying that the health law is “settled”, and refusing to negotiate over its effect on the debt ceiling – is unrealistic