Anyone who can attend a townhall meeting by one of Colorado’s U.S. Senators or Representatives — if they have the courage to listen — might benefit from these questions from Heritage Foundation that get to the root of key questions about Obama Care:
Can you promise me that I will not lose my current plan and doctor?
Reps. Barney Frank (D-MA), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), and Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman have all admitted that the public option will inevitably lead to government-run health care. The independent and non-partisan Lewin Group estimates that about 83.4 million people would lose their private insurance if Obamacare became law.
Can you promise that you and your family will enroll in the public plan?
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) proposed an amendment that would require all members of Congress and their staffs to enroll in the newly-created public health insurance plan. His amendment passed by just one vote in the Senate Health Committee. In the House, Rep. Dean Heller (R-NV) offered a similar amendment and all 21 Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee voted it down.
Can you promise that Obamacare will not lead to higher deficits in the long term?
Congressional Budget Office director Douglas Elmendorf has stated that the House health care legislation would “generate substantial increases in federal budget deficits during the decade beyond the current 10-year budget window.” To help President Obama keep his promise of a “deficit-neutral” plan, Rep. Patrick Tiberi (R-OH) offered an amendment that would require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to submit an annual report comparing the expected revenue and spending and requiring the Secretary to reduce spending so that it would not exceed revenue. Democrats defeated Tiberi’s amendment.
Can you promise that government bureaucrats will not ration health care for patients on the public plan?
President Obama promised on July 22 that health care reform would keep the government out of health care decisions, but both the House and Senate bills call for an increased role of comparative effectiveness research (CER). Conservatives in both the House and Senate offered amendments prohibiting the use of CER by government to mandate, deny, or ration care. These anti-rationing amendments were defeated in both the House and Senate.
Can you promise me that my tax dollars will not fund abortions?
The House bill allows the Secretary of Health and Human Services to outline the minimum benefits that must be included in any health plan. There is no specific provision in the bill that would require insurance coverage of abortion. However, since the decisions over benefits are left to the Secretary of HHS, there is nothing to prevent the current or future Secretary from including abortion coverage in Americans’ health insurance. Conservatives in both the House and Senate offered amendments that would prohibit the use of taxpayer dollars to fund abortions; they were defeated in both the House and Senate.
For further documentation and background information, visit Heritage Foundation’s blog, The Foundry.