GOP senators: ‘Mr. President words matter’

Senate Republicans piled on criticisms of President Obama’s “broken promises” about ObamaCare Tuesday.

“As the leader of our country the president’s words matter,” Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) said on the Senate floor. “The promise that you can keep your plan if you like it, the promise you can keep your doctor is a broken promise.”

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Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Dan Coats (R-Ind.) joined Thune in bashing President Obama’s signature healthcare law, the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare.

They repeated Obama’s campaign promise that if someone liked their current healthcare coverage they would be able to keep it under a grandfather clause in the healthcare law.

“The president said, ‘if you like your healthcare plan, you’ll be able to keep your healthcare plan, period,’” Coats said. “The truth is you can only keep your healthcare plan if this administration likes it.”

Coats said that at least 3.5 million have been told they’ll lose the healthcare plans they had before ObamaCare. ObamaCare requires healthcare plans to cover privative care for women, among other things, so insurance companies were forced to change some of their policies.

The Republicans encouraged the public to share their stories if they’ve received letters from their insurance providers saying they’ll lose the plan they like.

Republicans have increased criticism of the law since the healthcare exchange website launched on Oct. 1. HealthCare.gov has experienced major technical “glitches.”

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) chided Republicans for not putting forward any alternatives to make ObamaCare better, but Cornyn countered by listing nine things he said would help reduce healthcare costs, including expanding health savings accounts and the ability to purchase healthcare plans across state lines.

Republicans have called for a full repeal of the law, but more recently have said the administration should at least delay for one year the individual mandate, which requires people to buy insurance or face a tax penalty.

Democrats argue that the law has already benefited those with preexisting conditions who cannot be denied coverage, people younger than 26 who can stay on their parents’ plans and women who receive free preventive care. But even some Democrats have now said the individual mandate should be delayed because of the healthcare exchange failures.