The House of Representatives are bringing a vote to the floor this Wednesday to repeal The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or better known as Obamacare. In case this sounds familiar, it is because it is the 37th vote brought to the floor by House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH). The reason is transparent: appease the right-wing, Tea Party faction of the House of Representatives.
“We’ve got 70 new members who have not had the opportunity to vote on the president’s health care law. Frankly, they’ve been asking for an opportunity to vote on it, and we’re going to give it to them,” Speaker Boehner explained in a press conference last week.
Is it not a waste of time? That once again the House of Representatives will bring “Obamacare repeal” to the floor: again and again and again. A vote that will go nowhere since it must get past the United States Senate and even if it does, the President most certainly will not sign it.
Says Speaker Boehner about this point. “Obamacare is going to drive up the cost of health insurance and is going to make it harder for small businesses to hire workers. I believe that at the core of who I am. I’m going to do everything I can to make sure we don’t wreck the best health care system the world has ever known.”
This, in spite of the fact that there is no evidence that the cost of insurance is rising or that it is harder for small business to hire workers.
For example, rates are coming down in Oregon, according to the The Oregonian. Maybe competition among health insurance plans can lead to lower rates. What is also clear from the filings is that there’s little sign in Oregon of the major premium hikes that the industry has been warning about for months.
“I don’t see sticker shock in the rates,” said Jim Perucca, executive vice president of Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of Oregon.
The new health insurance marketplace envisioned by federal health reforms doesn’t formally kick in until fall. But it already is taking shape – and consumers for the first time can compare, premium by premium, identical plans by different insurers. One health insurer wants to charge $169 a month next year to cover a 40-year-old Portland-area non-smoker. Another wants $422 a month for the same standard plan.
Providence Health Plan and Family Care Health Plans sought to lower their rates when they noticed they were out of whack compared to competitors — five months before the health law’s new online marketplaces even open for enrollment.
The story of lower rates is just beginning to unfold, as competition for the nearly 40 million uninsured Americans commences. But the House Republican Tea party fringe doesn’t seem to get it.
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John is the author of an award-winning book, the 2010 Winner of the USA National Best Book award for African-American studies, published by The Elevator Group Mr. and Mrs. Grassroots: How Barack Obama, Two Bookstore Owners, and 300 Volunteers did it. Also available an eBook on Amazon. John is also a member of the Society of Midland Authors and is a book reviewer of political books for the New York Journal of Books. John has volunteered for many political campaigns.