GOHMERT: It is Time to Kill ObamaCare Before it Kills Americans
By: Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX-01)
In 2010, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare,” came crashing into every home in America. The Senate knew they could not constitutionally originate a bill that raised revenue, so they stripped out every word of a 4 page bill that, in essence, gave incentives to active duty military and veterans to buy a home for the first time. Then, they substituted, in the place of the 4-page help for military members and veterans, thousands of pages that Senators had not read that fundamentally transformed the greatest healthcare in the world into a more expensive, more bureaucratic version of the V.A. healthcare while devastating care to senior citizens with over $700 billion in cuts.
It was supposedly whispered in the Senate that they need not worry because everyone knew that this massive and massively bureaucratic bill would certainly not be the final bill. It would just give them some place to start to negotiate with the House. The House would clearly have to originate such a bill.
A funny thing happened on the way to debating House and Senate ideas for the government’s complete takeover of the healthcare for every American (and anyone else who gets here, legally or illegally). A Republican Senator named Scott Brown was elected in Massachusetts which took the Democratic majority in the Senate from 60 to 59, one vote short of cloture. That also meant that the Senate would not ever be able to get cloture on a House ObamaCare bill.
It was quite a wakeup call for the Democrats to realize that the only way to have a government take-over of everyone’s healthcare would be for the House to take up the monstrosity, modeled after a failing Massachusetts healthcare bill passed by the Democrat-controlled legislature and signed by Gov. Mitt Romney. The House voted 219 to 212 to approve the measure, with every Republican voting against it.
This two-thousand plus page legislation promised hope and change –an inexpensive health policy and to aid those who were uninsured, allowing people to keep policies they liked, doctors they liked, and lifesaving care they needed. Wrong. Now in 2014, Obamacare is clearly wreaking havoc on Americans not only economically, but physically. For those who wanted the government out of their bedroom, they now have the government in every room in the house.
Back in September of 2013, I asked the First Congressional District of Texas to send in personal stories to my office of how Obamacare was affecting them directly. The response I received was overwhelming and truly heartbreaking. There were notes of individuals losing insurance(in fact, I am one of those now), doctors retiring to avoid government coming between them and what was best for their patients, while families got stretched financially to pay for this so-called ‘affordable’ healthcare.
There have been so many problems with Obamacare; it is hard to count all the setbacks –especially with the website, heathcare.gov. While the administration told Americans to sign up online, their system was crashing left and right and sometimes unusable for days. In total, the Obamacare website cost exceeded $1 billion. How many people could have gotten live saving procedures or medication with that money?
Though the administration touts that nearly 8 million have signed up for their victorious legislation, it’s important to note the ambiguity around just how many of them were previously uninsured and how many, in fact, have actually paid their premiums. McKinsey, the leading management consulting firm, has figured up that only 27 percent of the 8 million are previously uninsured enrollees. And of the 27 percent, a little more than 13 percent still need to pay for their premiums.
Democrats told us we had to get insurance for 30 million uninsured, and for that, we’ve had to have millions thrown off the insurance they liked, losing doctors, in some cases keeping them alive and many seniors lose their eligibility for things like pacemakers or dialysis. We have also seen that it is punishing middle class families and making their premiums skyrocket.
More and more we are seeing instances like the Phoenix VA hospital, where 1,600 veterans waited for more than a year for first time appointments with primary-care physicians and sometimes more than 200 days for referrals to specialists. Sorrowfully, as a result, an estimated 40 veterans passed away waiting for the care they were promised to receive at that one facility in Arizona. This is not only wrong; it’s offensive and an omen of exactly where Obamacare is headed.
This broken system is taking from taxpayers wallets each and every day. States such as Oregon, Massachusetts, and Maryland already need to be bailed out for their failing ObamaCare system to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars.
There are some who say that since this bloated, rotting whale has a couple of things that Republicans have admitted are usable, that we should keep the entire, disaster. Those advocates have not given a number of how many unnecessary earlier than necessary deaths are acceptable to them.
According to a 2011 report by MailOnline, breast cancer survivability rates in England were about 23% lower than our pre-Obamacare numbers. Basically, the proponents are saying that needlessly losing one out of every five women with breast cancer people is acceptable loss to them, just so we can say we have government run healthcare. This is not acceptable to Republicans and many Democrats are waking up to say it is not acceptable to them either.
Simply look at all the thousands and thousands of bureaucratic jobs created by ObamaCare that will not provide a smidgeon of healthcare. An estimated 17,000 to 18,000 new IRS agents will never so much as put a Band-Aid on someone who needs help. They certainly will be going after the money of the sick or dying, but certainly will not help. Think of the massive number of navigators who are out trying to sell health insurance, and apparently register voters while they are at it, whose jobs are paid for with health care dollars that could more appropriately be spent on cancer treatments or pacemakers that keep people alive. If the goal is to provide more people actual healthcare, then the new jobs should be for healthcare, not more government.
If a concern is that the government does not have enough information about every American’s most private personal lives, then ObamaCare should be kept. At its core, it must have the healthcare records of every American. Of course you would want the government having details of your intimate physical secrets to go along with the NSA having phone logs and the new Consumer Protection Finance Board grabbing all your credit card information under the guise of servicing you.
Obamacare is doing so much damage to healthcare as we know it. There were provisions like young people staying on their parents’ insurance longer that Republicans offered to pass with bipartisan help but the Democrat leadership wanted to use things agreeable to both sides to justify their massive takeover of American lives through their healthcare.
Obamacare is rotten and that rot is already spreading as healthcare providers are laying off doctors and nurses in favor of the required bureaucrats under this bill. It is time to kill ObamaCare before it kills Americans.
Congressman Louie Gohmert is the Vice Chair of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security. Prior to being elected to serve in Congress, Louie was elected to three terms as District Judge in Smith County, Texas. He also served as Chief Justice of Texas'12th Court of Appeals.