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Congressman Tom McClintock

Representing the 4th District of California

The Toll of Obamacare

November 19, 2013
Speeches
The Toll of Obamacare
November 19, 2013
 
Mr. Speaker:
 
We are now seven weeks into the implementation of Obamacare.  We know in the first four weeks, 106,000 Americans placed health plans in their shopping baskets, though it is not clear how many of them actually purchased plans.
 
Meanwhile, it is now estimated that some FIVE AND A HALF MILLION Americans have lost the health insurance that they had, that they liked, and that they were promised they could keep.
 
The inconvenient truth is that this law has dramatically INCREASED the ranks of the uninsured.
 
Yesterday came word that college students are seeing their low-cost student plans cancelled – with replacement costs as much as 1,800 percent higher under Obamacare.
 
Although the President recently assured the nation that the cancelations are confined to the individual market, we are now learning that his administration gives a mid-range estimate that 2/3 of small employer plans and 45 percent of large employer plans face cancellation as well.  Some estimates are as high as 93 million Americans with employer-sponsored plans will lose their plans next year. 
 
And these reports don’t account for the millions more who are seeing massive rate increases in their current plans.   
 
Nor do they account for the millions more who have had their hours cut back to part time, have had their wages cut back, or who have lost their jobs altogether as employers struggle to stay in business while bearing these staggering costs. 
 
Nor do they account for those who discover that by accepting Obamacare plans they are losing their doctors.
 
Wal-Mart now warns that the financial impact of this law could materially depress holiday shopping.
 
Mr. Speaker, we are watching nothing less than the wholesale destruction and collapse of the American health care system, which, for all its flaws, was still the most advanced, accessible, adaptable and responsive health care system the world has ever known. 
 
If you doubt that for a second, ask yourself where the world’s elites came when they needed first class medical care.  It wasn’t Canada or England or Mexico – it was the United States.
 
And now we are losing that.
 
There was nothing unforeseen about this fiasco: Republicans have been warning of these outcomes from the very beginning. 
 
When we warned that Americans would not be able to keep their health plans, we were called extremists.
 
When we warned that Obamacare would result in massive cost increases on consumers we were called alarmists.
 
When we warned that many Americans would lose their jobs, have their hours cut back or see salary cuts, we were called racists.
 
When we asked for a one year delay in this program to address these issues, we were called demagogues, arsonists and jihadists.
 
But now all of those warnings have come to pass, and still the Democrats persist in imposing this law on an unwilling nation.
 
In doing so, great violence is being done to our Constitution.
 
In implementing this takeover of one sixth of the American economy, the President has repeatedly asserted what can only be described as a doctrine of executive nullification: the authority to ignore the parts of the law he finds inconvenient or embarrassing and to pick and choose those who must obey that law and who need not.  
 
He has granted a reported 1,600 exemptions for politically well-connected interests, including many labor unions.
 
He has excused big businesses from the requirement that they provide health care to their employees, while forcing employees to fend for themselves.
 
He has excused members of Congress and their staffs from paying the full cost of Obamacare policies.
 
And last Thursday, he announced that health insurers can ignore the law that requires them to cancel existing policies.   Notice that he didn’t say he would seek to change the law.  He said he would IGNORE the law for a year and he invited health insurers to do the same, in direct violation of his principle constitutional responsibility to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”
 
Mr. Speaker, I appeal to my Democratic colleagues to consider the damage that this law is causing – both to the American health care system and to the rule of law itself.  I ask them to heed the growing pleas of the American people to have their health plans restored to them.  I ask them to join Republicans in repealing Obamacare and to help us replace it with the patient-centered health care that we have proposed: reforms that preserve the best of American Health Care while repairing its flaws.
 

 
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Issues: