Obamacare promises defy real-world trends

The Oklahoman Editorial Published: September 28, 2012
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The mistaken assumptions of Obamacare are more apparent every day. For one thing, the program won't end the problem of the uninsured.

U.S. Census Bureau data shows that more than a third of Oklahoma's Hispanic population is uninsured, including 61 percent of foreign-born, non-citizen Hispanics. That subset includes many illegal immigrants, people who obviously won't have insurance even under Obamacare but can still use the emergency room.

That's just one example. This summer, the Congressional Budget Office projected that 30 million people will be uninsured 10 years from now, about 8 percent of the population.

Obamacare supporters portray its astronomical costs and negative economic impact as a trade-off for ending the cost-shifting created by the uninsured. Now we know that's not going to stop. So all that's left are the skyrocketing costs and slower economic growth.

That's not the only false assumption of Obamacare. Tarren Bragdon, president of the conservative Florida Foundation for Government Accountability, served in the Maine House of Representatives in the late 1990s. During that time, Maine approved a Medicaid expansion similar the one promoted by Obamacare.

The Maine expansion covered only childless adults with no disabilities who were ineligible for other welfare programs but earned less than minimum wage. Officials were shocked when costs ran nearly twice as high as projections for that supposedly low-cost group. Bragdon notes much of the expansion population turned out to be “druggies and people with significant substance-abuse problems in their 20s and 30s.”

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