ObamaCare destroying private health care

ObamaCare destroying private health care

July 25th, 2011 in Opinion Free Press

Opponents of ObamaCare warned again and again before it became law that it would drive countless employers to drop the medical insurance plans they currently provide to their employees, and that the workers would then be forced onto ObamaCare.

Not surprisingly, the Obama administration denied that at almost every opportunity.

The president declared repeatedly that "If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan."

But it is becoming distressingly clear that's just not so.

By 2014, ObamaCare will force all companies with more than 50 workers to offer government-approved medical benefits or pay $2,000 in penalties per full-time worker. What many companies are discovering is that it may be less expensive for them to drop coverage, pay the penalties and let employees go onto ObamaCare instead.

In fact, nearly a third of employers in a recent McKinsey & Co. survey said they definitely or probably will no longer offer medical plans once ObamaCare is fully implemented in 2014.

Obviously that means their workers will not get to keep the terms and benefits to which they've become accustomed, no matter how much they may like them. They will have to take what they can get under ObamaCare. They may not even get to keep the same doctors.

The president himself admitted in an ABC News interview even before ObamaCare passed that Americans couldn't necessarily keep their current plans and physicians.

"When I say, 'If you have your plan and you like it, ... or you have a doctor and you like your doctor, that you don't have to change plans,' what I'm saying is the government is not going to make you change plans under health reform," he conceded.

But the federal government is creating perverse incentives that make it economically unrealistic for many private companies to continue to offer their own health plans, and that is going to drive many businesses to drop their plans altogether.

That, in turn, will drive more people onto government care, even though existing government-run health programs such as Medicare and Medicaid are already in deep financial trouble. Medicare, in fact, is expected to go broke in just a few years.

We can see no benefit in enrolling tens of millions more Americans in government health care programs, but we can see how doing so will worsen our country's economic problems.

Further proof of that is the fact that a majority of the states -- which will be saddled with much of the unsustainable cost of ObamaCare -- have filed suit to block the law. They understand with painful clarity that ObamaCare poses a serious threat to their budgets and thus to their people.

Congress should repeal ObamaCare, but with Democrats controlling the Senate and the White House, that is unlikely in the near future. That leaves it up to the federal courts -- and eventually the U.S. Supreme Court -- to rightly declare it unconstitutional.