Obamacare Collapse Trips Hillary in Third Debate
Clinton hammered on premium hikes and declining options as ACA failure escalates
No, the Affordable Care Act has not made health care more affordable for American citizens, despite what Hillary Clinton may want the people to overlook when she talks about tweaking it.
When Clinton and Donald Trump faced off for the third and final presidential debate Wednesday evening, they were presented with the question of what to do with the national debt dilemma and the additional looming burden to the debt from Obamacare.
“The president and his allies have had their way for over six years; and the same ‘progressive’ policy prescriptions that got us into this mess are not going to get us out of it.”
Clinton struggled to walk the fine line between praising President Obama’s signature legacy item while trying to distance herself from the escalating collapse of the program.
“And I’ll say something about the Affordable Care Act which [Trump] wants to appeal — the Affordable Care Act extended the solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund. So if he repeals it, our Medicare problem gets worse,” Clinton said during the debate. “What we need to do is factor the long-term health care drivers. We’ve got to get costs down, increase value, emphasize wellness. I have a plan for doing that and I think that we will be able to get entitlement spending under control, but with more resources and smarter decisions.”
But her plan won’t work. There is no way the Democratic nominee plausibly can lower premium costs and get the “entitlement spending” under control as Obama’s darling health care catastrophe continues on the path to total collapse.
"And one thing we have to do — repeal and replace the disaster known as Obamacare," Trump said during the debate. "It's destroying our country. It's destroying our businesses — our small businesses and our big businesses."
The facts back up Trump.
"The majority of Americans 'get' it," Dr. Robert E. Moffit, a senior fellow in The Heritage Foundation's Center for Health Policy Studies, told LifeZette in an email. "The president and his allies have had their way for over six years; and the same 'progressive' policy prescriptions that got us into this mess are not going to get us out of it. No amount of talk about the 'successes' of Obamacare is going to change it."
Of the 23 nonprofit co-ops set up under Obamacare to subsidize health care coverage, 16 have collapsed nationwide, leaving thousands who signed up for health care under the law without coverage. In addition, a wave of major insurers have announced they will be pulling out of state health care marketplaces.
UnitedHealth Group has announced an exit from at least 31 of 34 exchanges it previously offered coverage in, while Aetna will leave at least 11 of the 15 exchanges where it had a presence.
But it doesn't stop there. Obamacare has ignited soaring premium hikes that have hit individuals and families alike. As federally run marketplaces continue to close down left and right at alarming rates, the remaining insurers have raised their premium prices dramatically.
Just recently, Michigan announced that the state had approved an average 16.7 percent price hike for people buying into the state's Affordable Care Act exchange in 2017. Individual buyers in Colorado will also experience a 20 percent hike, as Iowans brace themselves for a price increase anywhere from 19 percent to a whopping 43 percent next year.
States like Minnesota and Oklahoma are set to weather even greater price increases at 50-67 percent and 76 percent averages, respectively, starting Nov. 1. Other upcoming state prices hike averages include Pennsylvania at 33 percent, Nebraska at 35 percent, Alabama at 36 percent, Illinois at 44 percent, and more.
"Remember the president's initial — and oft-repeated — insistence that the enactment of his health reform agenda would result in a $2,500 annual reduction in 'typical' family premiums? That was always preposterous, of course; and the premium trajectory has climbed ever skyward," Moffit said.
Moffit also noted that employer-based premiums are set to rise by a rate of 6 percent in 2017 — which, although milder, is still problematic.
"Meanwhile, exchange deductible increases have been breathtaking, and insurance plan networks of doctors and hospitals are narrowing even more, making access to care increasingly inconvenient," Moffit added.
Sure enough, a recent Gallup survey showed that 51 percent of respondents disapproved of the ACA, while only 44 percent approved of it. While 18 percent say the health care system has helped their families, 29 percent say it has hurt their families in a record high for the survey.
"You take a look at the kind of numbers that that will cost us in the year '17 — it is a disaster. If we don't repeal and replace — now, it's probably going to die of its own weight — but Obamacare has to go," Trump said during the debate. "The premiums are going up 60, 70, 80 percent. Next year they're going to go up over 100 percent. And I'm really glad that the premiums have started — at least the people see what's happening — because she wants to keep Obamacare, and she wants to make it even worse. And it can't get any worse. Bad health care at the most expensive price. We have to repeal and replace Obamacare."
As the premiums continue to rise and American continue to suffer, Clinton is increasingly caught in a tough predicament.
"After more than six years, Obamacare remains unpopular, and that will not change between now and November," Moffit told LifeZette back in September. "Ms. Clinton stands by the unpopular law, and promises the 'fix' of a new government health plan to increase competition."