House Chamber, Washington, D.C. January 18, 2011.
The central promises of Obamacare were that it would bend health costs down and wouldn’t threaten existing plans.
We now know that both these claims were false.
The CBO warns that this law will increase average private premiums by $2,100 within five years above what they otherwise would have been without Obamacare. The administration’s own actuary admits that the law bends the cost curve up – not down – by $311 billion over the next ten years.
And we now know that many existing plans are indeed jeopardized and that scores of companies that offered their employees basic plans have either dropped them or continue them only with waivers left to the whims of Administration officials.
But the most dangerous provision of this law is the federal government’s assertion that it has the power to force every American to purchase products the government believes they should purchase, whether or not they want them, need them, or can afford them.
If this precedent prevails, the federal government will have usurped authority over every aspect of individual choice in the care of our families and can logically extend that power to every other commodity in the market.
The tragedy is that every day we continue down this road is a day we have lost to address the real problems in our healthcare system: the spiraling costs of malpractice litigation and defensive medicine, the loss of freedom to shop across state lines, the loss of freedom to tailor plans to the needs of individuals and families, and the absence of the tax advantages that families need to afford and choose their own health plan according to their own needs.
Churchill said, “All men make mistakes but wise men learn from them.”
The American people understand that Obamacare was a huge mistake. Let us acknowledge that, learn from it, and move on to enact the reforms that will reduce health costs and increase health care choices for families.