Obamacare is based on lies, hypocrisy, and illegal activities. Here are 35 examples.
Note: A longer, more recent version of this list can be found at http://danfromsquirrelhill.wordpress.com/2013/09/24/obamacare-59/
1) Lied about putting health care negotiations on C-SPAN
Although Obama had made a campaign promise to have all of the health care reform negotiations broadcast on C-SPAN, he broke that promise after he was elected.
The secrecy of these negotiations was so strong that U.S. Congresswoman and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California) said, “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
2) Lied about letting people keep their health insurance
Before Obamacare was passed, Obama said:
“No matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people… If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”
Also before Obamacare was passed, Obama said:
“Here is a guarantee that I’ve made. If you have insurance that you like, then you will be able to keep that insurance.”
However, after Obamacare was passed, the Congressional Budget Office said that the law would cause seven million people to lose their employer provided insurance.
After Obamacare was passed, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East announced that it would drop health insurance for the children of more than 30,000 low-wage home attendants. Mitra Behroozi, executive director of benefit and pension funds for 1199SEIU stated
“… new federal health-care reform legislation requires plans with dependent coverage to expand that coverage up to age 26… meeting this new requirement would be financially impossible.”
Also, after Obamacare was passed, the Franciscan University of Steubenville dropped its coverage in response to the law.
Universal Orlando dropped its coverage for part time employees in response to Obamacare.
In addition, after Obamacare was passed, Forbes reported
“The House Ways and Means Committee has released a new report that sheds light onto how Obamacare incentivizes companies to dump their workers onto the new law’s subsidized exchanges.”
Also after Obamacare was passed, MSN reported
“The Affordable Care Act mandate most commonly known as Obamacare has some tight stipulations that, CNN says, are forcing health care companies to rip up most of their current plans and draft new ones that comply. According to a University of Chicago study, just about half of the individual health care plans currently on the market won’t cut it once key provisions of the Affordable Care Act kick in next year.”
Furthermore, it was reported that Obamacare would cause 58,000 Aetna and UnitedHealth Group customers in California to lose their insurance.
In response to Obamacare, some employers have dropped coverage for their employees’ spouses.
The chain of Wegmans supermarkets cancelled the policies of its part time employees in response to Obamacare.
In July 2013, leaders of the Teamsters, UFCW, and UNITE-HERE sent a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi which said that Obamacare
“will shatter not only our hard-earned health benefits… these restrictions will make non-profit plans like ours unsustainable… we can no longer stand silent in the face of elements of the Affordable Care Act that will destroy the very health and well being of our members along with millions of other hardworking Americans”
3) Lied about the cost of Obamacare
Before Obamacare was passed, Obama promised
“I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits – either now or in the future. I will not sign it if it adds one dime to the deficit, now or in the future, period. And to prove that I’m serious, there will be a provision in this plan that requires us to come forward with more spending cuts if the savings we promised don’t materialize.”
However, after Obama signed it, the Washington Post reported that it would add more than $340 billion to the budget deficit over the next decade.
In March 2012, the Congressional Budget Office said that over the next decade, Obamacare would cost twice as much as what Obama had promised.
In May 2013, it was reported that Obamacare’s program for high risk patients was more expensive than what Obama had promised.
4) Falsely claimed that the U.S. Supreme Court had never overturned any laws that had been passed by Congress
Despite having taught constitutional law at one of the most prestigious law schools in the country, in April 2012 Obama falsely claimed that the U.S. Supreme Court had never overturned any laws that had been passed by Congress.
5) Illegally gave Obamacare exemptions to unions that supported the passage of Obamacare
Obama gave some organizations an exemption from some of the requirements of Obamacare. Many of these organizations were unions that had supported the passage of Obamacare, but now wanted exemptions from the very same law that they wanted to force everyone else to obey. This reveals an extreme level of hypocrisy among many of the supporters of Obamacare.
In addition, these exemptions are illegal, because the Constitution requires the law to treat everyone the same.
The Washington Times wrote of this:
“Selective enforcement of the law is the first sign of tyranny. A government empowered to determine arbitrarily who may operate outside the rule of law invariably embraces favoritism as friends, allies and those with the best-funded lobbyists are rewarded. Favoritism inevitably leads to corruption, and corruption invites extortion. Ultimately, the rule of law ceases to exist in any recognizable form, and what is left is tyranny.”
“The now-familiar monthly trickling down of new waivers is, at best, a tacit admission that Obamacare is a failure. So far, seven entire states and 1,372 businesses, unions and other institutions have received waivers from the law. The list includes the administration’s friends and allies and, of course, those who have the best lobbyists.”
“More than 50 percent of the Obamacare waiver beneficiaries are union members, which is striking because union members account for less than 12 percent of the American work force. The same unions that provided more than $120 million to Democrats in the last two elections and, in many cases, openly campaigned in favor of the government takeover of your health care, now celebrate that Obamacare is not their problem.”
6) Said the health insurance mandate was not a tax, but later told the Supreme Court that it was
Before Obama’s health care reform was passed, he said that the mandate was not a tax. However, after it was passed, the Obama administration argued in front of the Supreme Court that the mandate really was a tax.
7) Punishes hospitals for saving the lives of patients with heart disease
Obama’s health care reform contains a provision that reduces Medicare payments to hospitals with high 30-day readmission rates. Sunil Kripalani, MD, a professor with Vanderbilt University Medical Center, said of this, “Among patients with heart failure, hospitals that have higher readmission rates actually have lower mortality rates. So, which would we rather have — a hospital readmission or a death?”
8) Encouraged medical device manufacturers to lay off employees
In response to the medical device tax that is part of Obamacare, some medical device manufacturers have announced plans to layoff employees, including Welch Allyn (275 planned layoffs), Stryker (1,170 planned layoffs), and Medtronic (1,000 planned layoffs).
In December 2012, Al Franken, Elizabeth Warren, John Kerry, and 15 other Democrats who supported the passage of Obamacare wrote a letter to Harry Reid, asking him to delay the tax on medical devices, claiming that the tax would hurt job creation in their districts.
9) Encouraged employers to switch their employees from full time to part time
The New York Times reported that Obamacare
“sharply penalizes full-time employment in favor of part-time employment.”
In response to the employer mandate of Obamacare, some restaurants have announced plans to switch some of their employees from full time to part time, including some franchises of Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, White Castle, and Fatburger.
Community College of Allegheny County switched 200 professors and 200 other employees from full time to part time in response to Obamacare. Clint Benjamin, an English professor at Community College of Allegheny County, said that this would reduce his own monthly pay by $600.
Also in response to the employer mandate of Obamacare, other colleges have announced plans to switch some of their employees from full time to part time, including Florida’s Palm Beach State College, Ohio’s Youngstown State University, and New Jersey’s Kean University.
In Virginia, thousands of government employees had their hours reduced because of Obamacare.
The Carnegie Museum of Pittsburgh reduced the hours of 48 of its employees in response to Obamacare.
Regal Entertainment Group, the largest chain of movie theaters in the country, announced that it would be switching thousands of its employees from full time to part time in response to the Obamacare mandate.
Utah’s Granite School District reduced the hours of 1,200 of its employees in response to Obamacare.
In response to Obamacare, many Wal-Mart stores have stopped hiring full time workers.
In July 2013, leaders of the Teamsters, UFCW, and UNITE-HERE sent a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi which said that Obamacare will
“destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class… the law creates an incentive for employers to keep employees’ work hours below 30 hours a week. Numerous employers have begun to cut workers’ hours to avoid this obligation.”
10) Falsely said that switching to electronic medical records would make health care cheaper
Although Obama claimed that switching to electronic record keeping as part of Obamacare would make health care cheaper, it actually made it more expensive.
11) Broke his own deadline for creating healthcare exchanges
Three years after Obama signed Obamacare, the New York Times reported that Obama would miss his own deadline for creating some of the insurance exchanges for small businesses.
12) Falsely said that surgeons get paid between $30,000 and $50,000 for amputating a leg
In August 2009, while trying to justify the passage of Obamacare, Obama stated
“Let’s take the example of something like diabetes, one of — a disease that’s skyrocketing, partly because of obesity, partly because it’s not treated as effectively as it could be. Right now if we paid a family — if a family care physician works with his or her patient to help them lose weight, modify diet, monitors whether they’re taking their medications in a timely fashion, they might get reimbursed a pittance. But if that same diabetic ends up getting their foot amputated, that’s $30,000, $40,000, $50,000 — immediately the surgeon is reimbursed. Well, why not make sure that we’re also reimbursing the care that prevents the amputation, right? That will save us money.”
The American College of Surgeons responded to this by saying
“President Obama got his facts completely wrong. He stated that a surgeon gets paid $50,000 for a leg amputation when, in fact, Medicare pays a surgeon between $740 and $1,140 for a leg amputation. This payment also includes the evaluation of the patient on the day of the operation plus patient follow-up care that is provided for 90 days after the operation. Private insurers pay some variation of the Medicare reimbursement for this service.”
13) Falsely said that doctors perform unnecessary tonsillectomies to make more money
In July 2009, Obama said
“Right now, doctors, a lot of times, are forced to make decisions based on the fee payment schedule that’s out there. So if … your child has a bad sore throat, or has repeated sore throats, the doctor may look at the reimbursement system and say to himself, ‘You know what? I make a lot more money if I take this kid’s tonsils out.'”
“Now, that may be the right thing to do. But I’d rather have that doctor making those decisions just based on whether you really need your kid’s tonsils out or whether it might make more sense just to change — maybe they have allergies. Maybe they have something else that would make a difference.”
The American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery responded by saying
“The AAO-HNS is disappointed by the President’s portrayal of the decision making processes by the physicians who perform these surgeries. In many cases, tonsillectomy may be a more effective treatment, and less costly, than prolonged or repeated treatments for an infected throat.”
14) Added 20,000 extra pages to Obamacare without Congressional approval
After Obamacare was passed, Obama added 20,000 extra pages to it, even though those extra 20,000 pages had not been voted on by Congress.
15 ) Signed health care reform law whose own authors called it a “huge train wreck” that was “beyond comprehension”
U.S. Senator Max Baucus (D-Montana), one of the authors of Obamacare, said of it, “I just see a huge train wreck coming down.”
U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-West Virginia), another author of the law, said it was “beyond comprehension.”
16) Waited until after the 2012 election to release unpopular Obamacare rules
In April 2013, the New York Times reported:
… even fervent supporters of the law admit that things are going worse than expected.
… the Obama administration didn’t want to release unpopular rules before the election.
Everything is turning out to be more complicated than originally envisioned.
A law that was very confusing has become mind-boggling… Americans are just going to be overwhelmed and befuddled. Many are just going to stay away, even if they are eligible for benefits.
17) Used Obamacare to illegally give the IRS additional powers without approval from Congress
In May 2013 the Washington Post wrote:
The law allows the Department of Health and Human Services to set up federal health exchanges in the holdout states. But the statute makes no mention of the IRS providing credits and subsidies through federal exchanges.
The IRS resolved this conundrum by denying its existence. In a May 2012 regulatory ruling, it asserted its own right to provide credits outside the state exchanges as the reasonable interpretation of an ambiguous law. But the language of the law is not ambiguous. And health scholars Jonathan Adler and Michael Cannon, in an exhaustive recent analysis, find no justification for the IRS’s ruling in the legislative history of Obamacare. “The statute,” they argue, “and the lack of any support for the IRS rule in the legislative record put defenders of the IRS rule in the awkward position of arguing that it was so obviously Congress’ intent to offer tax credits in federal exchanges that despite a year of debate over the PPACA, it never occurred to anyone to express that intent out loud. A better explanation is that the PPACA’s authors miscalculated when they assumed states would establish exchanges.”
So: The IRS seized the authority to spend about $800 billion over 10 years on benefits that were not authorized by Congress. And the current IRS scandal puts this decision in a new light. What was the role of politics in shaping this regulatory decision? What pressure was applied?
18) Illegally solicited donations from health insurers
19) Pressured unions to reduce the amount of health insurance coverage for their employees
In May 2013, the New York Times reported:
Say goodbye to that $500 deductible insurance plan and the $20 co-payment for a doctor’s office visit. They are likely to become luxuries of the past.
Expect to have your blood pressure checked or a prescription filled at a clinic at your office, rather than by your private doctor.
Then blame the so-called Cadillac tax, which penalizes companies that offer high-end health care plans to their employees.
Although the tax does not start until 2018, employers say they have to start now to meet the deadline and they are doing whatever they can to bring down the cost of their plans. Under the law, an employer or health insurer offering a plan that costs more than $10,200 for an individual and $27,500 for a family would typically pay a 40 percent excise tax on the amount exceeding the threshold.
Tom Leibfried, a legislative director for the A.F.L.-C.I.O., one of the unions whose plans are vulnerable to the tax, says the demands that workers pay more for their care is a perennial aspect of labor negotiations. “We’re very concerned about the hollowing out of benefits in general,” he said. “What the excise tax will do is just fuel that.”
20) Betrayed the people of the city that helped him launch his political career
As part of his effort to get Obamacare passed, Obama repeatedly promised that people could keep their current health insurance if they liked it.
More than any other city, the people of Chicago helped to get Obamacare passed. Chicago is where Obama chose to live when he first got into politics. The people there launched his political career and voted him into office.
And this is how Obama repays them. In May 2013, the Chicago Tribune reported:
Mayor Rahm Emanuel plans to start reducing health insurance coverage next year for more than 30,000 retired city workers and begin shifting them to President Barack Obama’s new federal system.
The move is aimed at saving the city money
Once the phaseout is complete, those retired workers would have to pay for their own health insurance or get subsidies under the Affordable Care Act. The city-subsidized coverage is particularly important to retired workers who aren’t yet eligible for Medicare
Henry Bayer, executive director of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31, said the uncertainties of the Affordable Care Act and the state insurance exchanges they would create make the city’s plan hard to assess.
“This uncertainty will cause anxiety and fear for tens of thousands of seniors who gave their working lives to public service — men and women whose retirement savings are already under attack in the name of ‘pension reform.'” Bayer said.
21) Raised the interest rate on student loans to pay for Obamacare
Obamacare raised the interest rate on students loans from 5.3% to 6.8%. The money is used to fund Obamacare.
22) Refused to fire or prosecute 15 IRS agents who illegally seized the medical records of 10 million people
23 Hired 16,500 new IRS agents to run Obamacare
In June 2013, it was reported that Obama had hired 16,500 new IRS agents to run Obamacare.
24) Illegally bypassed Congress to delay Obamacare’s employer mandate
As the Obamacare law was written, the employer mandate was to begin in January 2014. This is what the law said when it was passed by the House and Senate, and signed by President Obama in 2010.
However, in July 2013, Obama delayed the employer mandate part of Obamacare until January 2015. Obama did this without approval from Congress.
For Obama to change a law that was passed by Congress, without first getting approval from Congress, is a violation of the Presidential oath that Obama took to uphold and defend the Constitution.
What Obama did here is an action of a dictator, not an action of a President whose power is limited by a written constitution.
If Obama can get away with this, then it sets a horribly dangerous precedent, and means that the President can arbitrarily make any change to any law that has been passed by Congress, without first getting approval from Congress.
25) Made it too hard for some doctors to continue their practices
In July 2013, ABC News reported that some doctors were shutting down their practices in response to Obamacare.
Dr. Robert WcWilliams, an obstetrician/gynecologist with more than 5,000 patients, said:
“It’s going to be run by bureaucrats – and it’s going to be run by politicians – who have no idea what is in your best interests, then I’m getting out.”
26) Falsely guaranteed that people could keep their doctor
Before Obamacare was passed, Obama said:
“Here is a guarantee that I’ve made… If you’ve got a doctor that you like, you will be able to keep your doctor.”
However, in July 2013, the Obama administration said that people “may” be able to keep their doctor.
27) Broke his promise to have real time verifiability of Obamacare subsidies
In July 2013, Investor’s Business Daily wrote:
Meanwhile, the administration tacitly admitted last week that its promise of real-time verification of a consumer’s eligibility to buy subsidized coverage at an ObamaCare exchange wasn’t exactly panning out.
Under ObamaCare, only those who don’t have access to “affordable” insurance at work can buy coverage in an exchange, and only those below certain income levels are eligible for tax subsidies.
Rather than a high-tech instant check, the administration told states they could simply take the applicants’ word for it when it comes to their employer-provided coverage, as well as their “projected annual household income,” without the need for “further verification.”
28) Singed health care reform whose rules contradicted each other
Obamacare allows insurance companies to charge higher premiums for smokers. At the same time, it prohibits insurance companies from charging more than three times as much for older people as it does for younger people. In June 2013, Obama’s computer programmers said that they had been unable to write a computer program that simultaneously agreed with both of these rules.
29) Signed a health care reform plan that is so horrible that even the IRS agents who run it don’t want to participate in it
Obama hired 16,500 new IRS agents to run Obamacare.
But Obamacare is so awful that even the IRS agents who run it don’t want to participate in it.
In July 2013, the National Treasury Employees Union, which represents the IRS employees who will be running Obamacare, provided a form letter to its members to send to their Congressmen. The letter stated:
“I am very concerned about legislation that has been introduced by Congressman Dave Camp to push federal employees out of the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and into the insurance exchanges established under the Affordable Care Act.”
When asked about this, IRS chief Daniel Werfel responded by saying:
“I don’t want to speak for the NTEU, but I’ll offer a perspective as a federal employee myself and a federal employee at the IRS. And that is, we have right now as employees of the government, of the IRS, affordable health care coverage. I think the ACA was designed to provide an option or an alternative for individuals that do not. And all else being equal, I think if you’re an individual who is satisfied with your health care coverage, you’re probably in a better position to stick with that coverage than go through the change of moving into a different environment and going through that process. So I think for a federal employee, I think more likely, and I would — can speak for myself, I would prefer to stay with the current policy that I’m pleased with rather than go through a change if I don’t need to go through that change.”
30) Illegally prevented individual employees of small businesses from choosing their own plan during the first year of Obamacare
Obamacare requires that individual employees of small businesses be allowed to choose their own insurance plan during the first year of Obamacare. However, in March 2013, the Obama administration announced that it would not be allowing them to make this choice during the first year.
31) Falsely said that Obamacare had not hurt jobs
In July 2013, the Obama administration said that Obamacare had not hurt jobs.
However, in the real world, in response to the medical device tax that is part of Obamacare, some medical device manufacturers have announced plans to layoff employees, including Welch Allyn (275 planned layoffs), Stryker (1,170 planned layoffs), and Medtronic (1,000 planned layoffs). In December 2012, Al Franken, Elizabeth Warren, John Kerry, and 15 other Democrats who supported the passage of Obamacare wrote a letter to Harry Reid, asking him to delay the tax on medical devices, claiming that the tax would hurt job creation in their districts. The New York Times reported that Obamacare “sharply penalizes full-time employment in favor of part-time employment.” In response to the employer mandate of Obamacare, some restaurants have announced plans to switch some of their employees from full time to part time, including some franchises of Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, White Castle, and Fatburger. Community College of Allegheny County switched 200 professors and 200 other employees from full time to part time in response to Obamacare. Clint Benjamin, an English professor at Community College of Allegheny County, said that this would reduce his own monthly pay by $600. Also in response to the employer mandate of Obamacare, other colleges have announced plans to switch some of their employees from full time to part time, including Florida’s Palm Beach State College, Ohio’s Youngstown State University, and New Jersey’s Kean University. In Virginia, thousands of government employees had their hours reduced because of Obamacare. The Carnegie Museum of Pittsburgh reduced the hours of 48 of its employees in response to Obamacare. Regal Entertainment Group, the largest chain of movie theaters in the country, announced that it would be switching thousands of its employees from full time to part time in response to the Obamacare mandate. Utah’s Granite School District reduced the hours of 1,200 of its employees in response to Obamacare. In response to Obamacare, many Wal-Mart stores have stopped hiring full time workers. In July 2013, leaders of the Teamsters, UFCW, and UNITE-HERE sent a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi which said that Obamacare will “destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class… the law creates an incentive for employers to keep employees’ work hours below 30 hours a week. Numerous employers have begun to cut workers’ hours to avoid this obligation.”
32) Falsely said that health insurance premiums would be reduced by $2,500 per family by the end of his first term
In February 2008, Obama said:
“We are going to work with you to lower your premiums by $2,500. We will not wait 20 years from now to do it, or 10 years from now to do it. We will do it by the end of my first term as president.”
However, by the time his first term was over, family premiums had gotten bigger, not smaller. The increase was $3,065 per family.
33) Illegally gave Obamacare waiver to Massachusetts
In August 2013, Obama gave an Obamacare waiver to Massachusetts.
This waiver was illegal for two reasons. First, the waiver was not approved by the U.S. Congress. Second, the U.S. Constitution requires that the federal government treat all states the same.
34) Exposed the hypocrisy at Democratic Underground
For some really hilarious displays of shock and outrage by supporters of Obamacare at how it’s harming low wage workers, check out these threads at Democratic Underground: one, two, three, four, and five.
35) Betrayed the unions that helped him to get elected
In January 2013, the Wall Street Journal reported:
Some Unions Grow Wary of Health Law They Backed
Labor unions enthusiastically backed the Obama administration’s health-care overhaul when it was up for debate. Now that the law is rolling out, some are turning sour.
Union leaders say many of the law’s requirements will drive up the costs for their health-care plans and make unionized workers less competitive. Among other things, the law eliminates the caps on medical benefits and prescription drugs used as cost-containment measures in many health-care plans. It also allows children to stay on their parents’ plans until they turn 26.
Some 20 million Americans are covered by the health-care plans at issue
Top officers at the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the AFL-CIO and other large labor groups plan to keep pressing the Obama administration to expand the federal subsidies to these jointly run plans, warning that unionized employers may otherwise drop coverage. A handful of unions say they already have examined whether it makes sense to shift workers off their current plans
“We are going back to the administration to say that this is not acceptable,” said Ken Hall, general secretary-treasurer for the Teamsters, which has 1.6 million members and dependents in health-care plans. Other unions involved in the push include the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union and Unite Here
Sheet Metal Workers Local 85 in Atlanta, which has about 1,900 members. Next year it must lift the $250,000 annual cap on the amount it will pay for medical claims. The law’s requirements will add between 50 cents to $1 an hour to the cost of members’ compensation package