Morning Action: Obama Sort of Doesn’t Apologize for Obamacare Lies
NON-APOLOGY. Americans are not impressed by President Obama’s passive condolences that millions Americans are losing the health insurance plans they loved thanks to Obamacare:
Instead, over a period of five years, he repeatedly told Americans that under his health care legislation, those who liked their current health care policies could keep them.
And now that millions of Americans have been receiving cancellation notices from their health insurers, the media has finally awakened to the fact that he was lying all along.
So, when Obama sat down for an interview with NBC’s Chuck Todd Thursday, there wasn’t much that he could say that could improve his situation. This didn’t stop Obama from spinning webs.
Obama kept saying that the cancellations only affected a “small percentage” of Americans. But the Associated Press tally of current cancellations — at least 3.5 million people — is greater than the population of his beloved Chicago.
If every Chicagoan had suddenly lost insurance coverage they liked under President Bush, would Obama have dismissed the problem as only affecting a small number of people?
INCREASED COSTS. The Heritage Foundation notes that while unions are getting special exemptions from Obamacare, every day Americans are losing their health insurance plans by the millions:
Labor unions accused Obamacare of “shattering” hard-earned benefits and destroying the foundation of the middle class when they begged earlier this year for special treatment. Instead of advocating relief for all Americans, they merely advocated a carve-out for their members.
Meanwhile, people across the country are seeing their plans canceled or premiums increased. For people shopping in the Obamacare exchanges, premiums are going up in at least 42 states.
JOBS. According to the Department of Labor, the temporary partial government shutdown did not affect job creation, though 11.3 million Americans remain unemployed:
Economists were expecting weak job growth, due to uncertainties created by the budget battles in Washington. But the Labor Department noted “there were no discernible impacts of the partial federal government shutdown” on the job growth numbers.
The jobs report also showed the unemployment rate rose slightly to 7.3%, up from 7.2% in September, but economists expect this to be a passing blip. About 448,000 furloughed federal workers were counted as being on temporary layoff, and the next jobs report, due on December 6, will probably show these people were back at work in November.
Overall, the picture certainly isn’t completely rosy. About 11.3 million Americans remained unemployed in October — 4 million of whom have been out of work for at least six months.
WEBSITE WOES. Bostonians are giving up on HealthCare.gov after long, frustrating attempts at signing up for a new health insurance plan:
The state website residents must use to sign up for Obamacare health plans is riddled with infuriating computer flaws that cut off people with hyphenated names and force others to falsely say they are prison inmates or mental patients before they can finish their applications, a Herald review found.
The review comes just a week after President Obama came to Massachusetts — the birthplace of Romneycare, the model for the White House’s universal health care plan — to defend massive problems with the national website.
The review of angry posts from scores of frustrated applicants on the Massachusetts Health Connector website and Facebook page found a wide range of complaints, from frequent computer crashes, to long waits on the phone, to absurd glitches.
POLL. According to a new poll, the uninsured in America are not using the Obamacare website, which is not surprising:
Fewer than a quarter of all uninsured Americans have so far even attempted to visit an exchange site, according to a new Gallup poll.
As the Obama administration struggle to fix problems with the federal health exchange website, the poll found just 18 percent of the exchanges’ target audience – the nation’s uninsured – have tried to go to an ObamaCare site since it opened on Oct. 1.
Among those uninsured Americans who say they plan to eventually purchase insurance through the exchanges, a slightly higher percentage, 22 percent, say they have attempted to visit an exchange site.
These results undermine the Obama administration’s confidence in ObamaCare to reach its target audience. The exchange sites are not only fraught with technical problems that have led to long wait times and error messages for users, but have also failed to generate interest among uninsured Americans.