Millions are receiving insurance cancellation notices due to Affordable Care Act regulations. Some of those millions are folks with serious health problems. They now find themselves in the position of not being able to keep the insurance plans they liked or the doctors they esteemed, despite numerous unequivocal promises to the contrary by President Barack Obama. The president and many Democrats have responded to this crisis with a “let them eat cake” approach.
The dropped insurance plans were “subpar,” say these ACA supporters, or “bad apples.” Such talk makes Kirsten Powers’s “blood pressure go up.” Powers, a Democrat and commentator on Fox News, had one of those policies and, to her, it was just right.
She’s not the only Democrat who’s angry over this turn of events. Several Democratic politicians, now including Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), who is in a safe seat and not up for reelection in 2014, want to fix the canceled policies problem by passing a law.
But can they really turn back the clock on canceled policies? Opinions vary on how possible this is. It might be possible to stop more cancellations, but not re-offer plans that were scrapped due to ACA regulations. For example, Rep. Fred Upton’s (R-MI) Keep Your Health Plan Act:
“…would allow plans available on the individual market today to be offered next year.”
What about plans that are no longer available, though? What happens to those whose plans have been “vaporized,” to quote Jim Angle of Fox News, himself quoting a source.
Some of them will buy new insurance, often at higher prices and for the same or less coverage. But some might be priced out of the market entirely, opting to pay the penalty for not having insurance. Then what happens if they become seriously ill?
Simple–their lives are ruined if they face huge health care bills. The very thing the ACA was supposed to forestall will be the cause of life-altering hardship.
During the campaign for the ACA, I saw numerous stories of cancer patients posted on social media, drawing attention to how no insurance or low-coverage insurance had ruined people’s lives, sometimes even cutting lives short. These stories were obviously meant to drum up sympathy and support for the Democrats’ health care reform.
Where will Democrats’ sympathy be when the ruined lives of Obamacare become known? Call me a cynic, but I suspect most of the compassion poured out on “victims” of our previous health care system was more weapon than sincere emotion. Now that those swords are sheathed, the sympathy will be hidden, as well.
Do Democrats love their neighbors as much as they hate Republicans? If they do, their compassion will flow toward the victims of the ACA. If they don’t, they’ll remain silent.