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Cramer: Blatant falsehood around Senate healthcare bill

August 18, 2017
Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) , Pierce County Tribune

After reading that health care would be 'ripped away' from 34,000 North Dakotans as part of the Senate's latest 'Skinny Repeal' vote on repealing parts of Obamacare, I'm compelled to set the record straight on this legislation, which failed after three Senate Republicans and all 48 Senate Democrats opposed it.

It is blatantly false to say people would have their health insurance 'ripped away'. No one's health insurance would be 'ripped away,' but that's not what Democrats want you to believe. This deception, which has now reached a fever-pitch among the radical left, is intended to scare and confuse you.

Here's what the bill actually does: It takes away the individual mandate, which is a tax penalty for not having health insurance; It delays for eight years the employer mandate forcing businesses to provide health insurance; It gives states more authority to create health plans that work best for their citizens; It defunds Planned Parenthood, of which North Dakota has none, and instead provides substantial funding for community health centers; It repeals the medical device tax, which has bipartisan support; And, it increases the amount of tax-free dollars you can contribute to Health Savings Accounts.

Here's what the bill doesn't do: It doesn't touch Medicaid or Medicaid Expansion; It doesn't touch Medicare; It doesn't eliminate the federal subsidies to help low and moderate-income people get health care in the individual insurance market; And, it doesn't reduce health care taxes on high-income earners.

When Democrats say health insurance will be 'ripped away', they actually mean North Dakotans might choose to no longer purchase Obamacare. There is a significant difference between choosing not to purchase health insurance, and having health insurance 'ripped away.' The Congressional Budget Office assumes that a fraction of Americans will choose not to obtain expensive Obamacare insurance if the painful IRS tax penalty, known as the individual mandate, is repealed. However, choosing not to obtain health insurance, while not advised, should be your individual right - especially when Obamacare premiums and deductibles are so high that you can't afford to use your health insurance anyway.

This bill wasn't what everyone wanted; it was a compromise as a first step to help fix our broken health care system.

Yet, Democrats led by Minority Leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer continue to rally their troops and deploy divisive rhetoric intended to prevent compromise and mislead the American people.

The ugly truth is that Democrats don't want compromise. They want a centralized single-payer health system run out of Washington.

 
 

 

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