ObamaCare, the gift that keeps on giving for Republicans

ObamaCare is the political gift that keeps on giving for Republicans hoping to take control of the U.S. Senate. Not only are millions of Americans projected to tragically have their insurance policies cancelled due to the law’s onerous regulations, but in the state of Minnesota, the largest provider to those who signed up using the state’s health insurance exchange has found that they cannot afford to continue doing business in the state under the law.

But cancellation notices are not the only way that ObamaCare will negatively impact Democrats’ political fortunes. Voters will be hit hard later this month and in October with notices that their insurance premiums are rising 7.5 percent on average, or more than four times this year’s inflation rate.

{mosads}Quite a different story than what was promised during the president’s push to pass the bill.

While most people remember the “if you like your health insurance, you can keep it” lie, the other major sales pitch for passage of the failed law centered around the promise that health insurance rates were going to go down by $2,500.

This claim was laughed at as being absurd, given the law’s increased mandates on what and who health insurers had to cover. In spite of legally mandated increased costs, somehow advocates of the law claimed that health insurers were going to magically be able to significantly lower rates.

Now that health insurers have had a year to digest the underlying costs of providing coverage with the exchanges in full effect, this naive or deceitful promise is being laid to waste by reality.

Supporters of the law are expected to take two tacks in explaining away the increase. Most will say that a 7.5 percent increase is a good thing, because it was less of an increase than they feared. This ignores the fact that the average annual income for workers has declined nearly $5,000 for the median worker since 2007, and this past year remained virtually the same as the year before.

Into this reality of stagnant wages, an ObamaCare-triggered 7.5 percent health insurance increase is devastating to families just trying to survive, and poison to Democrats who imposed it on the people.

And contrary to the assertions of some, it isn’t the health insurers’ fault. This is an ObamaCare-driven cost increase passed directly onto the consumer. No matter how much supporters of the law may scream desperately trying to shift blame from themselves, those who voted for the law own the higher cost to consumers.

The premium notices arriving in the weeks prior to the election should serve as a painful reminder to voters about their member’s ObamaCare vote. If the rates had decreased, you can be assured that Democratic politicians would be bragging about their support for the law. Instead, they can only hope that voters can be convinced to blame someone else.

For those who opposed ObamaCare, this final vindication that the cost savings pillar of the law is falling should not bring glee. Their constituents are hurting, and rather than crowing, they need to redouble their efforts to repeal this poorly conceived law.

Manning (@rmanning957) is vice president of public policy and communications for Americans for Limited Government. Contact him at

Tags ACA health insurers Minnesota ObamaCare Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

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