Monday, March 31, 2014
Barrasso: Administration 'Cooking the Books' on Obamacare
Barrasso: Administration 'Cooking the Books' on Obamacare
Sunday, 30 Mar 2014 02:09 PM
By Sandy Fitzgerald
The Obama administration is "cooking the books" while touting its numbers on Obamacare, Wyoming Republican Sen. John Barrasso says. And even though there are Democrats working on "fixes" to the president's signature healthcare law, "it is not fixable."
Last week, the Obama administration reported 6 million people had signed up for insurance, and that it expected its initial goal of 7 million customers by March 31 will be filled as people sign on at the last minute.
But Barrasso, a physician, told "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace that the number of people who have paid for their coverage is lower than the White House admits, and so is the number of previously uninsured people.
"I don’t think [six million] means anything," said Barrasso. “I think they’re cooking the books on this. People want to know the answers to that. They also want to know, when this is all said and done, what kind of insurance will those actually have?"
He said that even though people may have insurance, "will they be able to keep the doctor that they want? How much more is it going to cost them? And we know that the best cancer hospitals in the country want very little to do with people that actually buy this insurance on the Obamacare exchanges."
Administration guidelines for the success of Obamacare say that 38 million of the people who are signing up need to be young and healthy so the plans can be funded. However, only about a fourth of them are young, said Wallace.
Further, the numbers are lower when it comes to people who were previously uninsured. Twenty-seven percent of those signing up already had other coverage, and another 23 percent have not paid their first premiums, said Wallace.
Maine Sen. Angus King, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, has been working on a plan to change some of the Obamacare provisions, including offering a "copper" level plan on the exchanges that will cost customers less money but expect them to pay higher premiums. Another change being eyed is to allow companies with up to 99 full-time employees to enjoy an exemption from having to provide insurance for their workers, instead of the current provision giving that exemption to companies with 50 or fewer full-timers.
King, appearing on the Sunday show, argued that enrollees are now up to 6.5 million, "numbers that don't come from the White House, and he anticipates that there will be another surge of people before the Monday cutoff.
"The sign-ups are getting younger by the day," King said. "Younger people, not surprisingly, are the last people to sign up."
The open enrollment date, which President Barack Obama ordered pushed back into mid-April for people who say they are having problems signing on because of the HeathCare.gov. website, will not create an inconsistency, said King.
"People are in line, and they've started the process of signing up," he said, comparing the extension to when voters are allowed to cast ballots if they already standing in line."
But Barrasso said the extension does not deal with the "issue of actually getting people care. What we see is even with those signing up, many of them are seeing higher premiums [but they] can't keep their doctors, and they can't keep their hospitals."
For example, he said, 10 of 28 New Hampshire's hospitals are excluded from the Obamacare exchange plans.
Further, Barrasso said that even the changes proposed by King and other Democrats "only nibbles around the edges, but it doesn't get to the fundamental flaws."
Democrats are "unnerved" and "pushing the panic button," he said, because they are worried about keeping their seats in this year's midterm election battles.
"What we're seeing now are politicians trying to save their political careers instead of focusing on medical care," he said.
Angus S. King Jr. is a U.S. Senate senator, a senator for the ME congressional delegation, was a Maine state government governor, and a director at Unity08.
Note: Chellie Pingree is a house member for the ME congressional delegation, and was the president & CEO for the Common Cause.
Foundation to Promote Open Society was a funder for the Common Cause, the Brookings Institution (think tank), Human Rights First, and the Committee for Economic Development.
George Soros was the chairman for the Foundation to Promote Open Society, and is a board member for the International Crisis Group.
George J. Mitchell was the chair emeritus for the International Crisis Group, the Mideast envoy at the U.S. Department of State for the Barack Obama administration, a U.S. District Court District of Maine judge, and a Maine state government governor.
Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation is a department for the Maine state government.
Susan M. Collins was a commissioner for the Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution (think tank), is a U.S. Senate senator, a senator for the ME congressional delegation, and her uncle is Samuel W. Collins Jr.
Samuel W. Collins Jr. is Susan M. Collins uncle, and was an associate justice for the Maine Supreme Court.
Maine Supreme Court is the Supreme Court for the Maine state government.
Harold H. Koh was a trustee at the Brookings Institution (think tank), a legal adviser at the U.S. Department of State for the Barack Obama administration, a director at Human Rights First, and is Howard K. Koh’s brother.
George A. Vradenburg III was a director at Human Rights First, and an advisory board member for Unity08.
James D. Zirin was a director at Human Rights First, and is a senior counsel for Sidley Austin LLP.
Dora Hughes is a senior policy adviser for Sidley Austin LLP, and was Kathleen Sebelius’s counselor at HHS.
Kathleen Sebelius’s counselor at HHS was Dora Hughes, and is the secretary at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for the Barack Obama administration.
Howard K. Koh is the assistant secretary at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for the Barack Obama administration, and Harold H. Koh’s brother.
R. Eden Martin is counsel at Sidley Austin LLP, and the president of the Commercial Club of Chicago.
Newton N. Minow is a member of the Commercial Club of Chicago, and a senior counsel at Sidley Austin LLP.
Michelle Obama was a lawyer at Sidley Austin LLP.
Barack Obama was an intern at Sidley Austin LLP, and Obamacare is his signature policy initiative.
CGI Group Inc. was the Obamacare contractor that developed Healthcare.gov web site.
Donna S. Morea was the EVP for the CGI Group Inc., and a trustee at the Committee for Economic Development.
Barbara G. Fast was a VP for the CGI Group Inc., and a VP at the Boeing Company.
W. James McNerney Jr. is the chairman & president & CEO for the Boeing Company, and a member of the Commercial Club of Chicago.
Commercial Club of Chicago, Members Directory A-Z (Past Research)
Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Cyrus F. Freidheim Jr. is a member of the Commercial Club of Chicago, and an honorary trustee at the Brookings Institution (think tank).
Posted by Sam and Bunny Sewell at 2:27 AM