Obama no Promise Keeper: WaPo

posted at 9:28 am on August 18, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama continues to promise that his health-care reform won’t change anything for the 83% of people already satisfied with their current coverage.  In every appearance, Barack Obama uses some form of this quote:“Under the reform we’re proposing, if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.” USA Today fact-checked that in a sidebar last week among other claims, but yesterday the Washington Post devoted an entire article on just this one promise — and concludes that Obama can’t keep that promise:

In the marketplace, called an exchange or gateway, employees could end up with more and better options, analysts say. Even a top Republican staffer to the Senate committee, who is not authorized to speak for the record, agrees with that assessment. But Democratic legislative aides said there is no assurance that any of the options offered in the exchange would be the same as employees’ current coverage.

Because coverage offered through an exchange would have to comply with new requirements, it could easily be different.

At a minimum, the exchanges would be open to small employers, but government officials would have the discretion to open the exchanges to larger employers. …

In a campaign to dispel alleged myths about health reform, the White House has posted a “Reality Check” on its Web site. “You can keep your own insurance,” it declares.

Obama’s promise is not just at odds with legislative proposals — it is also at odds with reality.

The CBO predicted that millions of people would get tossed out of their current, employer-based coverage, and that will happen for at least two reasons.  On what the White House would consider a more positive note, current plans that do not meet the mandates required for coverage to be offered through the exchanges would be dropped either immediately or within a short period of time, and employers would have to choose a plan that did meet the mandates.  That means that people who were satisfied with their coverage would lose it because the government was dissatisfied with the plan, although ObamaCare backers insist that would improve the coverage — without explaining how.

The second and more likely scenario is that employers will realize that paying the fine/tax for not providing health-care coverage for their employees is cheaper than paying for the coverage in the new system.  When that threshold gets met, employers will dump people out of their existing plans in droves, paying the fine/tax and forcing their employees to buy plans from the exchanges.  A mass exodus would cause the insurers to  receive a big shock to their risk pools, and many will leave the market altogether — leaving people will few choices but the public plan and ObamaCare.

Nothing in ObamaCare guarantees that people satisfied with their current coverage will be able to keep it.  In fact, all of the incentives in ObamaCare align in the opposite direction.  Obama wants to overhaul the entire system, which means that the status quo will disappear across a wide swath of the US.  The 85% of people who have coverage now will certainly get impacted heavily in such a radical makeover, and Obama is flat-out lying when he insists that his overhaul will mean a maintenance of the status quo.


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The people out there that are against health care reform didn’t even vote for him in the first place.

No explosions. Just a bunch of pissed off Medicare recipients that don’t like the fact that a black guy is in the White House.

welcome_ghosts on August 18, 2009 at 9:57 AM

If 55% of the population didn’t vote for him, how did he get to be president.

Ah yes, the classic, anyone who disagrees with a black guy is a racist line. Will liberals every think up a new schtick?

MarkTheGreat on August 18, 2009 at 10:43 AM

I believe it is just shocking Obama and the Liberals that Average Americans are standing up against this. They have tried to demonize them, but there is no specific person to demonize. There is no Sarah Palin or Joe The Plumber.

kingsjester on August 18, 2009 at 10:43 AM

It’s really hard to have an “open and honest debate” when the President habitually lies about his positions and goals and then demogogues those who point out his lies.

Bru on August 18, 2009 at 10:44 AM

I’m a 53 y/o white guy and I’d have voted for Alan Keyes, J.C. Watts, or Micheal Steele in a heartbeat, so your argument doesn’t wash….

Vntnrse on August 18, 2009 at 10:07 AM

In the eyes of a liberal, none of those men are really black. And to think, they call us racist.

MarkTheGreat on August 18, 2009 at 10:45 AM

Ah yes, the classic, anyone who disagrees with a black guy is a racist line. Will liberals every think up a new schtick?

MarkTheGreat on August 18, 2009 at 10:43 AM

No, they’re too intellectually lazy to invest the time and energy.

Bru on August 18, 2009 at 10:46 AM

Man, I hate open enrollment periods.
It takes weeks to shake loose all the new trolls.

MarkTheGreat on August 18, 2009 at 10:46 AM

No explosions. Just a bunch of pissed off Medicare recipients that don’t like the fact that a black guy is in the White House.

welcome_ghosts on August 18, 2009 at 9:57 AM


You keep trying to push threads into a racial argument.
Yoop on August 18, 2009 at 10:37 AM

That’s because that is all the liberals have. The facts and reality don’t support their talking points so all they can offer is demonization and pathetic stereotyping.


American Citizen:

“I don’t support government take over of my health care and the fact the CBO says it will increase debt but lower quality of care concerns me”.


liberal response:

“Racist!!!!”

How progressive!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Baxter Greene on August 18, 2009 at 10:48 AM

Remember – there is a puppet master at work here.

The issue is not OZ – but the man (or men and women) behind the curtain.

jake-the-goose on August 18, 2009 at 9:32 AM

Ah, but who is the man behind the curtain? Soros is my guess, but it is only a guess.

Bru on August 18, 2009 at 10:50 AM

No explosions. Just a bunch of pissed off Medicare recipients that don’t like the fact that a black guy is in the White House.

Ah. Right. RAAAAAAAAAAAAACIST!!!

You libs really are pathetic to continually be playing the race card every time Giggles stumbles. Here’s a thought (yeah, I know, you don’t have one beyond your Kos and Huffpo talking points) – why don’t you actually debate the issues instead of playing the race card?

crazy_legs on August 18, 2009 at 10:53 AM

Then explain the the plunge in the polls for both Obama and Obamacare amongst moderates.

Come on… you know the reason for that. The polls are all RAAAAAAAAAACIST!!!

crazy_legs on August 18, 2009 at 10:54 AM

You can always tell when Barry is lying. His lips are moving.

GarandFan on August 18, 2009 at 11:03 AM

I would like a leftist or a former leftist to take a stab at who is behind the curtain.
It is increasingly obvious that Obama is not smart enough to change a light bulb let alone engineer all of this.

ORconservative on August 18, 2009 at 11:05 AM

Obama’s promises flying in the face of reality? Nothing new there.

Yakko77 on August 18, 2009 at 11:09 AM

The evidence that it is Sros was just posted over at GP under the heading of Obama giving Brazil money to drill for oil off their shores.

Nice. While we’re racially opposed to Obamacare, Obama is helping Brazil drill for oil/ sarc.

ORconservative on August 18, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Soros…………I can’t even spell the name.

ORconservative on August 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM

The question is, how much will the fine be for not offering coverage? There are all sorts of numbers being thrown around, but, companies look to spend no more than $6k-$8k per year per employee. Many pay much more than that. So, if the fine is roughly less then $6k, companies will be happy to pay said fine and dump their health insurance offerings. Less red tape for the companies, less HR issues, etc

William Teach on August 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM

This is why these folks can’t cut it in the private sector and have no clue about economics. The only place where pathological liars, Klansmen and Black racists can all get rich is in the Democratic Party.

Hening on August 18, 2009 at 11:12 AM

Health care reform does not need to involve a single payer system. The only focus should be on making health insurance more affordable by lowering costs.

The government has no constitutional power to create “competition” in the private sector. Of course, that competition wouldn’t last long as all private insurance companies would not be able to compete against a public option paid for by our tax dollars.

I guess I must be either a racist or a nazi.

Dr.Gills on August 18, 2009 at 11:30 AM

This “racism” garbage is wearing me down.

The plain fact: if Osama Obama was a white man, he would never have been able to skate into the presidency with so much of his past — from birth to early working days (I should put quotes around “working;” the man has never done a day’s work in his life so far as I can tell — obscured, ignored or lied about. Voters would have demanded some kind of accomplishment on his record.

He has played the game, or had the game played for him, with consummate skill. Now, when it’s too late to avoid damage, the truth about his incompetence and childish lack of understanding begins to trickle out.

What I fear is that his presidency may well mean that no other black man or woman stands a chance for the nation’s highest office in our lifetimes. After Obama is through, it will be impossible for them to be judged on their merits.

MrScribbler on August 18, 2009 at 11:46 AM

Hasn’t Qbama for a long time said,
‘I want all Americans to have the same choice in healthcare
members of Congress have’.
Correct me if I’m wrong but,
1) Congress can buy health insurance across state lines.
2) Congress’ plan does not include a ‘public option’.

Good enough for the ‘royalty, not good enough for the ‘peasants’?
Broken promise or am I picking nits?

mrt721 on August 18, 2009 at 11:48 AM

One of the reasons the term “Obama-care” has become a journalistic convention is that there is no bill. You can’t talk about Obama’s actual healthcare plan because there isn’t one. There are a bunch of competing bills, proposals, ideas swirling around the halls of Congress like flotsam in a sewer. As even Robert Reich, Clinton’s Labor secretary, recently conceded, the failure to put forward a concrete proposal allows opponents to pick from a menu of scary ideas and possibilities, all of which can be labeled Obama-care……..J. Goldberg

We have a tourist attraction up here called Confusion Hill. The whole area is sliding into the river—-just like this bill.

Rovin on August 18, 2009 at 11:48 AM

When the President insisted on “remaking the foundation” of the “health care system”, whom could take seriously his simplistic promise of “keeping” things the same for 85% or so of the folks who did not want radical change? His premise obliterates his promise.

clorensen on August 18, 2009 at 12:14 PM

Obama is flat-out lying

Ed

What else is new. The occasions when this douche nozzle speaks honestly are swamped by the seemingly endless torrent of lies that he and his propaganda machine spew.

Jaibones on August 18, 2009 at 12:19 PM

Welcome_Ghosts is guilty of ageism; that is so politically incorrect.

He should bow his head in shame and make a donation to the AARP.

Dhuka on August 18, 2009 at 12:32 PM

Question… if I am going to pay for this new ObamaCare out of my taxes why would I want to pay for two insurances, my employers and ObamaCare.. thats just more crap coming out of my paycheck for other people….. this is all a bunch of crap.

Shack on August 18, 2009 at 12:38 PM

If liberals were inherently honest, there would be no need for the Democrat Party.

To use an analogy, we all feel that our neighbors grass “is always greener”. Conservatives will ask the neighbor how he gets his grass so nice, and then endeavor to improve his own yard. Liberals will demand the government take the neighbors grass and give it them.

BobMbx on August 18, 2009 at 12:46 PM

Recommended reading: Lyle H. Rossiter, M.D. “The Liberal Mind.”

The Republican Party has no leader. Perhaps that is because the party have read “Rules for Radicals” and will not allow the left to isolate and demonise the new leader.

Like her or not, I think Palin is walking point until Obama sinks himself.

allstonian on August 18, 2009 at 1:14 PM

Barack Obama uses some form of this quote:“Under the reform we’re proposing, if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.”

The word or words missing from that quote (that obama won’t say openly) is “temporarily”, or “for the time being”.

His plan does not include the longevity of private insurers, or freedom in general. I will never participate in a forced government plan in any way, shape or form. He can pack that notion in his ass.

Spiritk9 on August 18, 2009 at 1:47 PM

Welcome_Ghosts is guilty of ageism; that is so politically incorrect.

He should bow his head in shame and make a donation to the AARP ASA.

Dhuka on August 18, 2009 at 12:32 PM

Fix’t

Spiritk9 on August 18, 2009 at 1:50 PM

I want everyone to have the same wonderful health care that I get through the military… you are welcome. (/major sarc)

Rightwingguy on August 18, 2009 at 2:19 PM

welcomeghost@9:57
I would have voted for Colin Powell.

elclynn on August 18, 2009 at 2:19 PM

Soros…………I can’t even spell the name.

ORconservative on August 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM

I think ya spelled it backward. :-)

coldwarrior on August 18, 2009 at 2:47 PM

“No, they’re too intellectually lazy bankrupt. to invest the time and energy.”

Is this better?

oldleprechaun on August 18, 2009 at 3:44 PM

The problem is governmental central planning — that is a failed system of governing. That is why it is hated, whether we realize it or not.

LifeTrek on August 18, 2009 at 4:09 PM

It’s not just getting tossed out of your plan by your employer. As I read HB3200, Sec. 102(b)(1)(A) an employer-based plan in effect as of day 1, Y1 (the date the bill goes into effect) will have to “meet the same requirements as apply to a qualified health benefits plan under section 101, including the essential health benefit package requirement under section 121″ within 5 years plus whatever “grace period” is provided by the Commissioner. So, even assuming your employer continues your plan, you can “keep” the plan you “like” for only 5 years max.

jdp629 on August 18, 2009 at 5:17 PM

Why would businesses rather pay a tax than provide health benefits? It might be cheaper, but it certainly would make them less competitive. They could be cutting benefits and cutting wages at the same time, by raising the taxes/expenses of all their employees who would be mandated to buy coverage.

But, really, why should businesses continue providing health care if there’s an exchange where people can buy insurance, and why should a business be taxed for not providing it?

A business should have the choice between offering higher wages or higher benefits, but instead the government wants them to choose between higher benefits and higher taxes. That’s insane.

Dan Minardi on August 18, 2009 at 6:16 PM

You are wrong in your first scenario. You have to remember the liberal philosophy–the government knows what is best for you, better than you know what is best for you. If the government is dissatisfied with your health care plan, there is no way that you can possibly “like your health care plan.” That is why someone can “keep their health care plan if they are happy with it.” The government is the entity that actually knows if you are happy with your health care plan.

Conservative in NOVA on August 18, 2009 at 6:34 PM

Man, I hate open enrollment periods.
It takes weeks to shake loose all the new trolls.

MarkTheGreat on August 18, 2009 at 10:46 AM

LOL!!! Oh how right you are!!!

Vntnrse on August 18, 2009 at 9:15 PM

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