Morning Action: The Stories of Obamacare’s Harmful Effects Continue to Pile Up
OBAMA VOTER. Two Obama voters may be regretting their decision as their health care premiums skyrocket thanks to Obamacare:
Cindy Vinson and Tom Waschura are big believers in the Affordable Care Act. They vote independent and are proud to say they helped elect and re-elect President Barack Obama.
Yet, like many other Bay Area residents who pay for their own medical insurance, they were floored last week when they opened their bills: Their policies were being replaced with pricier plans that conform to all the requirements of the new health care law.
Vinson, of San Jose, will pay $1,800 more a year for an individual policy, while Waschura, of Portola Valley, will cough up almost $10,000 more for insurance for his family of four.
But people with no pre-existing conditions like Vinson, a 60-year-old retired teacher, and Waschura, a 52-year-old self-employed engineer, are making up the difference.
“I was laughing at Boehner — until the mail came today,” Waschura said, referring to House Speaker John Boehner, who is leading the Republican charge to defund Obamacare.
“I really don’t like the Republican tactics, but at least now I can understand why they are so pissed about this. When you take $10,000 out of my family’s pocket each year, that’s otherwise disposable income or retirement savings that will not be going into our local economy.”
OBAMACARE. Read the Heritage Foundation’s Morning Bell by D. Tim Shepherd to find out how Obamacare is harming the relationship between doctors in America and their patients:
These new boards and commissions to be established under Obamacare will tell doctors: “These are the procedures you will do, and these are the ones you will not do.” Treatment will be restricted, reimbursement will be further decreased, and more doctors will retire early, as I have already seen with many colleagues.
People need to think carefully when they say “Obamacare will offer health care to those who have none.” It promises to offer health insurance, but what sort of health care results when Obamacare adds even more government busywork and approvals to an already highly regulated system?
It’s not good news for individualized care. It means less time for me to get to know my patients. Caring for my patients is more to me than simply writing a prescription; it’s getting to the root of the problem. I will fight for my patients to get the care they need.
SEN. TED CRUZ. The following an interview of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) 94% with Candy Crowley on CNN’s “State of the Union”:
Sen. Cruz does not agree that both sides are to blame for the government shutdown (5:24 minute mark):
But I don’t think the facts support that, because if you look, the House Republicans repeatedly have been compromising, have been passing one bill after another. First of all, on Obamacare itself, and then secondly, working to restart vital government functions. And Senate Democrats, over and over again, and President Obama has said, they won’t negotiate, they won’t talk. They have not moved one inch. And when you’ve got one side that’s compromising, and the other side that isn’t, I don’t think it’s an accurate or fair description to say that neither side’s negotiating.
The government shutdown is lurching into a second week after a fruitless weekend on Capitol Hill.
A rare Saturday session was dominated by now-familiar shutdown messaging from Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate, with each side trying to blame the other for keeping the government shuttered. Even House-passed legislation that would pay federal workers prompted an angry reaction from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
There were no signs of serious negotiations over the weekend, and the longer the standoff drags on the more likely the fight will bump up against the Oct. 17 deadline to raise the debt ceiling — setting the stage for a giant battle over fiscal policy in the coming weeks.
PRIORITIZATION. Politico Morning Money reports that the Treasury has stated its position on prioritization:
“The Treasury’s position on prioritization is that its systems are designed to pay all obligations as they are due, and do not allow the Treasury to set a priority of payments to pay some obligations and not others. Considering that the Treasury makes around 4 million payments per day, this is not hard to believe. Even if full prioritization across all payments were possible, it seems unlikely to work smoothly in practice. …
“[W]e would expect that if it became necessary, the Treasury would still find a way to separate principal and interest payments from the rest. It is worth noting that those principal and interest payments, unlike other Treasury payments, are made through the Fedwire system, which could allow easier segregation from other outlays.”