GOP: 'Another broken promise' on healthcare
March 1st, 2014
10:46 AM ET
9 years ago

GOP: 'Another broken promise' on healthcare

Washington (CNN) - Republicans continued assaulting President Barack Obama's administration over the implementation of the Affordable Care Act on Saturday, accusing the President of breaking his word and violating the trust of the America people.

In the weekly GOP address, Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Missouri, cited a "quietly-released report" from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that claimed 11 million people would face higher premiums because of the healthcare law. The St. Louis lawmaker said this revelation is the latest piece of evidence that the Obama administration misled the public on how the President's signature piece of legislation would impact American families.

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"As it turns out, the so-called ‘Affordable Care Act’ is not so affordable for American families after all," Wagner said.

"Not only is this another broken promise to 11 million people who will lose more of their hard-earned money," she said, "it’s another slap in the face to our already hurting middle class."

Wagner's bludgeoning of the administration over the Affordable Care Act signals Republicans intend to keep the law's failings in public view as the 2014 midterm elections draw closer. The GOP-controlled House is set to vote next week on legislation aimed at reducing the penalty for those who fail to buy health coverage in order to comply with the law.

For her part, Wagner demanded the President give American workers an explanation for the law's unintended consequences.
"Mr. President, you owe our 11 million workers an explanation," Wagner said. "Are you willing to look them in the eye and say that you stand by this law?"

While Wagner questioned Obama's resolve in vocally supporting the law, the President delivered a full-throated defense of Obamacare on Friday. Speaking to the Democratic National Committee's winter meeting, Obama told the Washington audience that, despite the "disruptions" in the ACA's rollout - including the much-maligned website debacle - the law is a success. The President also countered that the Republican fixation on blockading the law's progress bordered on farce.

"We've worked hard to fix problems that have come up, without any cooperation from (Republicans). In fact they complained when we fix them. Well, how dare you fix the things we were complaining about? And then we take steps to fix it. You're a tyrant; you're overreaching," Obama said.

The President fashioned a pricklier barb when the topic turned to the Republican's forthcoming 50th attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

“You know what they say, 50th time is the charm. Maybe when you hit your 50th repeal vote, you will win a prize," Obama said.

Measureables on whether the law has accomplished its goals are decidedly more mixed.

The latest figures from CMS indicated some 700,000 people enrolled in Obamacare in February, raising total enrollment to roughly 4 million. With a little more than a month to go before the sign-up deadlines to get insurance this year expires, the administration will need a record month in March to reach its 6 million enrollment target.

Even as the White House works to hit its enrollment goal, the administration will likely face more Republican fire over newly announced subsidies to compensate some enrollees who got stuck in limbo. CMS recently announced those who could not enroll in state exchanges because of technical and other problems can receive financial assistance to help pay insurance providers. Individuals who had problems signing up for a plan during the eligibility determination phase and were unable to complete the enrollment process will now be able to apply for tax credits.

"We recognize that some states have experienced difficulties in processing automated eligibility determinations and enrollments, and we released guidance providing options to marketplaces to ensure eligible consumers have access to financial assistance and issuers are paid," CMS spokesman Aaron Albright told CNN.

Administration officials say the federal exchange already has a process in place to assist people lost in the eligibility determination phase.

CNN's Kevin Bohn contributed to this report.

Filed under: Ann Wagner • GOP weekly address • Health care • Healthcare • Obamacare
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. Neutral Observer

    I think we are going to see that everything said about obamacare that was positive was basically one big "botched joke". Why else, did they have to cram the legislation through without really knowing what was in it. Why else did the have to make deals and bribes to allow their friends to get out of it in order to get enough support to ram it thru? If something is really good, people usually argue to be allowed into the program, not to be allowed out of it. Just when we thought the major disaster of this admin was destroying the countries health care and putting us way way into debt, we now find out we're back into another cold war. Wow. I wonder how bat it will get before we can say how absolutely horrible this president is without being racist.

    March 2, 2014 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  2. georgezeller

    Work out well for me...too bad

    March 2, 2014 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  3. Tony

    JimboCombo, you should write to Americans For Prosperity so that they will have a real victim in their commercials, not someone who actually saves money under the ACA. However, if you are one of those who let their insurance companies raise premiums but can't be bothered to look for an alternative, then you probably should not bother.

    March 2, 2014 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
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