Okay folks, I know you think the C-Span Channel that broadcasts all those Congressional hearings is boring, but, really, you should have been around to watch the Senate Finance Committee’s hearing Wednesday on the Affordable Health Care Insurance Oversight. Folks, you haven’t seen so many faces of misery since you watched Les Miserables for three and a half hours…and they were all Democrats. And one of them, Senator Max Baucus, was the primary sponsor of Obamacare in the Senate! Now, try to follow me here because this gets pretty complicated. (It seems that Nancy Pelosi was right; you have to pass Obamacare to find out what’s in it…and the Democrats are now learning what the Republicans warned them about.
It’s an unworkable mess that is throwing millions of Americans off the health care rolls!) Okay, apparently, tens of thousands of American employers began throwing workers off their health care plans and opting to pay the much lower federal fine for not offering health care for their workers. Thousands more are even now converting their full time workers to part time workers by limiting working hours per week to less than 30, in compliance with Obamacare rules. (Remember when Paul Ryan and the Republicans predicted employers would do this? Remember when Democrats were warned that employers would move to save operating expenses by moving their entire work force into federal healthcare exchanges?) Now, these workers who have lost their health care benefits are busy trying to sign up for state health care exchanges. (There are internet sites available if your state has agreed to sign up to Obamacare). However, when these American workers, soon to be without employee provided health care, go to the Health Exchange to sign up, they are finding they are not qualified! It seems that during the signup process, applicants are required to fill in various income and benefit data, which then flows over to IRS computers who then are to spit out what your premium costs will be and how much federal tax credits you’ll receive in order to receive subsidies to help you afford health care premiums that are as much as 30% more than you were paying under your employers plan!
Big Problem! The IRS is only allowing somewhere around 9% subsidy support for Obamacare Health care Exchange premiums that are priced so much higher than the worker was paying under his employer plan! (Surprise, Surprise! Remember Republicans warning that forcing working Americans to pay for the 30 million who pay nothing for their health care under Medicaid would drive the premiums of working Americans higher?)
Second Big Problem! The IRS computers won’t mate up with the Health Care Exchange computers because the IRS computer system is obsolete! So when workers try to sign up for Obamacare the IRS and the Health Exchanges are telling applicants to go to hell! And so fireworks really broke out at the Finance Committee hearings on Obamacare yesterday afternoon. Senator Max Baucus, (Dem), said..”how could this happen? I’m hearing from my constituents that they and their families have been left out in the cold and are without health care because the Exchanges are not accepting them!”.
Quote from Senator Bill Nelson, (Dem), Florida “my constituents are not going to be happy to hear this administration failed to implement the necessary changes to accommodate health care applicants…someone has to pay for this!” Similar outrage was professed by Senator Ron Wyden (Dem) from Oregon.
Sadly, Obama Program Director for the Health care Affordability Act was on hand to lend testimony. All he could seem to do was sympathize with his Democratic buddies,saying that maybe the problems could be ironed out by the end of 2014 but could offer no ideas about how that could be done.
An Update! This morning a Harvard economics professor came on CNBC and announced that, according to a federal study his group just completed, the Health and Human Services Secretary is going to be forced to come back to this same committee, hat in hand, and request $700 billion dollars more be allocated to Obamacare just to pay for those automatically covered under current federal programs.
Also, sadly, the Wall Street Journal reported that, in addition to the 30 million Americans not currently covered under Obamacare, we can expect tens of millions more who will be left in the “no health care Twilight Zone”; those who were doing just fine with their employee health care plan until Obamacare was implemented this year. And many of those who were working 40 hour weeks will find themselves deemed “part time employees” working less than 30 hours per week and unable to afford Obama’s premiums even if they could get through the application process.And, as usual, while the working poor, and the rapidly declining middle class will be out in the cold without any health care, the Medicaid/Welfare have no worry. They are covered by that $700 billion dollar pot of gold Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services will be demanding from Congress soon!
Sad. Damned Sad.