Obamacare Gets the Heave Ho Ho Ho
If there’s one thing Republicans are anxious to wrap up this Christmas, it’s a health care plan. While Congress is officially adjourned for the holidays, the GOP is still in town working fast and furiously to craft a replacement for Obamacare that will help the new president hit the ground running. House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) said the party was more than willing to work overtime so that the new administration and the American people have a “health care plan that is dramatically different than Obamacare.”
For two days, Republicans have been huddled in the Capitol hashing through the details of a proposal that leaders plan to push right out of the gate. The process will be an exact replica of last year’s — using budget reconciliation to “completely gut Obamacare and defund Planned Parenthood,” as House Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) explained it. The only difference is, the bill will land on the desk of a pro-life president. “Donald Trump wants to sign that bill. We want to get [it] to his desk quickly.”
That time can’t come soon enough, say most conservatives. Especially not after FRC and Charlotte Lozier Institute delved deeper into the abortion coverage in Obamacare plans starting in 2017. In an exclusive report, our organizations make it clear that the Trump administration and Congress will have their work cut out for them as they prepare to replace Obamacare and address its biggest problems. Not only is the system failing millions of Americans who are looking for affordable health care, but it’s also failing millions of pro-life Americans who don’t want their taxes subsidizing insurance that covers the brutal killing of innocent unborn babies (violating the Hyde Amendment in the process!).
Seven years in, FRC’s Arina Grossu points out, Obamacare doesn’t even come close to protecting pro-life Americans as the President promised. Our findings for the 2017 plans (like 2016) show that 25 states (and the District of Columbia) permit elective abortion coverage (which refers to abortion-on-demand and for any reason) in Obamacare plans. Even in the remaining 25 pro-life states, Americans are still forking over federal taxes that are used to pay for coverage that includes elective abortion in other states. In the upcoming year, an estimated 57 percent of the Obamacare exchange plans in states that haven’t opted out of elective abortion coverage will cover elective abortion. That amounts to about 891 plans. On top of that, four new states in 2017 will only offer plans that cover abortion, bringing the total to six locales that lack even a single pro-life plan: Alaska, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Washington.
What’s worse, our research showed that information about abortion coverage wasn’t transparent. Plans offered on the Obamacare exchanges are required to be transparent about their abortion coverage in their summaries of benefits and coverage. For too many, that’s not the case. We found that there were anywhere between one and five insurance companies in 13 states not in compliance with the legal requirements to disclose their abortion coverage: Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, Montana, New Hampshire, Nevada, New York, Rhode Island, Texas, and West Virginia. That’s illegal and should be unacceptable! Unfortunately, this is the lawless status quo under Obama. Americans want lower premiums and deductibles, a transparent and hassle-free experience, abortion-free plans for themselves and their families, and relief from the forced partnership with groups like Planned Parenthood. Let’s hope the New Year delivers exactly that!
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