Is it really a good idea to change an entire country’s health care system when it isn’t ready? The government has already admitted they have no way of verifying which subsidy a person would qualify for.
“Many if not all of the state exchanges, and presumably also the federally-run exchanges, were planning to use the required employer reports to facilitate the eligibility reconciliation that you have to do at tax filing time when people receive advanceable tax credits like those set to be offered in the exchanges.”
“In fact, California,” said spokeswoman Anne Gonzales, “was planning to tap into information from large employers to verify employee health coverage. The exchange is currently evaluating how the delay in implementation of the large employer mandate will impact enrollment and verification.”
The Obama administration’s answer to California officials’ concerns is simply to waive the requirement to verify if you are eligible for the subsidy — despite this being a clear violation of the ACA as it is written.
Furthermore, there’s evidence they are behind in having the electronic exchanges ready, leading to concerns about both exchange participants and which corners will be cut in the setup that may make patient data vulnerable. Regardless, in another Friday afternoon news dump, it became clear that Obamacare will share your health information with federal and state agencies.
The new ruling surprised some congressional critics. “This sounds as if HHS will have access to protected health info to me,” said one top Hill aide worried about how well the administration will protect that information.
But wait… there’s more.
Serco, the British company contracted to develop the federal exchanges, is under investigation for fraud for over-billing government contracts. That should certainly warrant investigation as well as consideration of perhaps a different vendor to provide these services. It would certainly be a reasonable request from Congress to stipulate use of an alternative vendor as part of the negotiations.
The word “defund” seems heavy-handed and obstructionist. However, in reality it’s a request to avoid the mandated spending beginning in 2014 for a program that this administration has recognized is not ready. Many Democrats — even the Senate Majority leader — have admitted as much, even using the phrase “train wreck.” Therefore, it’s basically a request for a delay due to mounting evidence of challenges that will prevent successful implementation of the law.
While left wing cable pundits like Chris Matthews throw around ridiculous hyperbole such as calling a US Senator a “terrorist”, they fail to recognize the facts at hand. Regardless of where you stand on Obamacare as a good or bad policy for the country, it’s simply not ready for prime time. There is nothing radical in pointing out that fact and insisting that we delay for 1 more year. It strikes me that it’s radicals who, by any means necessary, are willing to impose this mandate on the American people — despite clear evidence from numerous polls that they do not support the law as it stands. Furthermore, eliminating safety checks for fraud and being unable to ensure patient data protection is both grossly incompetent and downright irresponsible.
I hear that the voters won’t support any action taken. It’s more likely that the media won’t support any action taken. But I’d remind folks in Washington: they don’t work for the media, they work for us. Here are a few key facts from a recent poll by The Morning Consult:
- Most people regardless of party affiliation, gender, or race believe the healthcare law will make their costs higher.
- Independents and Republicans lean towards believing the law will make rationing of care more likely.
- Interestingly, the mandate that was delayed — the employer mandate — is strongly favored by Democrats and favored by independents. There is likely to be a perception of unfairness if the individual mandate is not delayed to match the new schedule.
- As a caution of interest, both Democrats and Independents thought the administration delaying parts of the law demonstrated their willingness to compromise compared to Republicans’ belief that it showed it was unworkable. This sentiment could be utilized quite effectively in making the case to delay the implementation of the exchanges as a workable compromise even to Democrats and independents.
So I ask people from both sides of the aisle shirking from this discussion: is it responsible to let implementation go forward when you know there are fundamental functions that are simply not ready? Or even as Democrats and independents believe, that a delay demonstrates a willingness to compromise in order to get the implementation right?
We used to be a people that stood up to tyranny and oppression.
Are we now so weak, people will not act when faced with destructive policy implementation and get wobbly at the thought of having a discussion about delaying it for one year?
This isn’t a call to shut down the government. It’s a request to delay what is recognized as flawed policy lacking supportable infrastructure to allow it to function as written by law.
Reason should prevail.