Mary Landrieu, “Fixing” Obamacare is a Nonstarter for Louisianans
Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) kicked off her reelection campaign with a TV ad boasting of her bill that would “fix” Obamacare, the “Keeping the Affordable Care Act Promise Act.” But is this really something to be proud of?
She’s onto something: Americans are dissatisfied with Obamacare. She’s probably read the polls recently, like the Gallup poll that indicates 52 percent of Americans want Congress to scale back or repeal Obamacare entirely. Or perhaps she saw the poll this past August which showed 62 percent of Louisiana voters opposed Obamacare.
Their disapproval of Obamacare makes perfect sense. Voters are feeling the Obamacare pain – in their wallets. In fact, Heritage Foundation research, which indicates that premiums will rise in almost every state, shows that young people age 27 are hit with a premium increase of 106.2 percent in their one-month premiums on the Obamacare exchange compared to the non-group market. Adults age 50 and families of four in Louisiana will see a 44.1 percent and 12.4 percent increase respectively.
While she is right that Americans are displeased with false promises, Mary Landrieu is mistaken to think that this problem can be resolved with legislation like hers. Her bill would not remedy Obamacare’s adverse effects on Americans in the individual market or its effects on everyone else in America, and the “fixes” in the bill would only be temporary. And it would do nothing to “roll back the many onerous Obamacare mandates that disrupt coverage for the 49 percent of Americans with employer-provided coverage.” Liberal writer Ezra Klein even pointed out how this bill would make Obamacare worse for people by encouraging adverse selection:
Put simply, the Landrieu bill solves one of Obamacare’s political problems at the cost of worsening its most serious policy problem: Adverse selection. Right now, the difficulty of signing up is deterring all but the most grimly determined enrollees. The most determined enrollees are, by and large, sicker and older. So the Web site’s problems are leading to a sicker, older risk pool. Landrieu’s bill will lead to a sicker, older risk pool.
Heritage notes that the “Obama Administration is desperate for younger people to enroll to prevent an adverse selection death spiral.”
American needs permanent relief from the ravages of Obamacare, and that will only come with the full repeal of Obamacare and the implementation of a conservative plan, namely a patient-centered, market-based approach. Landrieu’s bill won’t help Obamacare, it will hurt it. And in the process, millions of Americans will be harmed as well.