President Donald Trump pressured the Senate to move quickly to fix the nation’s health care system for millions of Americans who have “had their lives completely upended by the disaster known as Obamacare.”
Trump praised the GOP House, during his speech Wednesday in Cincinnati, Ohio, for doing “its job” and sending a health care reform plan to the Senate for consideration. The president warned that time is of the essence because of the terrible toll Obamacare has taken on hardworking Americans and their families. As he spoke of the urgency, Trump was joined by two families — one from Dayton, Ohio, and the other from Louisville, Kentucky — who have suffered under Obamacare’s regulations and penalties.
“Thank you for being here and sharing your stories today and giving voice to millions and millions and millions of Americans who are going through turmoil right now. Absolute turmoil,” Trump said. “Health care is about so much more than dollars and cents. It’s about real people.”
Pointing to the woman from Ohio, the president noted that she used to have a great and affordable plan “that worked for her family.”
“Then came Obamacare. [She] liked her doctor, wanted to keep her doctor, but she could not keep her doctor. He wasn’t allowed under the rules and regulations unless she paid an additional $50,000 in out-of-pocket expenses for the birth of her precious little girl, just born, Colette,” Trump said.
The family’s premiums have quadrupled and their deductible has risen to $15,000, Trump noted.
Pointing to the small-business owner from Kentucky, Trump said, “Before Obamacare, his 11 employees enjoyed multiple options for high-quality, affordable health care. Everybody was happy.”
“Then came Obamacare, and now they have fewer choices. Premiums are 150 percent higher. It’s amazing. But you’re not alone. In Alaska it just went up 200 percent,” Trump said. “And creating new jobs is not really an option for [him] because his health insurance is so expensive.”
Those two people represented just two “of the many victims of the Obamacare catastrophe created by congressional Democrats,” Trump declared.
“Across America premiums are skyrocketing, insurers are fleeing, and the American people are paying much more for much worse coverage. The coverage is horrendous. It’s horrendous,” Trump added. “Since the law’s provision took effect, premiums have exploded by an average of 86 percent in Ohio and 75 percent in Kentucky. And those states are minor compared to others.”
Trump also pointed to Anthem’s decision Tuesday to withdraw from the Obamacare exchange in Ohio, leaving 20 counties without an insurer.
“So 93,650 families paid $60.5 million dollars in penalties instead of purchasing unaffordable Obamacare health plans that didn’t meet their needs,” Trump said. “Obamacare is in a total death spiral, and the problems will only get worse if Congress fails to act. Obamacare is dead. I’ve been saying it for a long time. Everybody knows it, everybody that wants to report fairly about it knows.”
Progress on a partial repeal and replace of the Affordable Care Act has largely stalled in the Senate. Trump noted he began a charm offensive yesterday to get GOP senators moving on the issue.
“We spent a lot of time yesterday with [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and a lot of the great senators. They happened to be Republicans because we’re having no help — it’s only obstruction from the Democrats,” Trump said. “The Democrats are destroying health care in this country. We have had no help. We will get no votes, no matter what we do.”
“If we gave you the greatest plan in the history of the world, you would have no Democratic vote. It’s all going to be Republicans or bust,” Trump lamented. “And the Republicans are working very, very hard on getting a great health care plan. So now it’s the Senate’s turn to act and again, I hope that they’re going to act in a very positive manner. I can tell you the Republican senators are trying very hard. The Democrats are really in our way.”
“We want millions of Americans … to finally have the quality and affordable health care that they deserve,” Trump concluded. “They’ve been unfairly penalized for too long a period of time. We’re working very hard to fix this big problem.”