November 19, 2013

Cole spies roadblocks, delays and barriers


Since its passage and throughout the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, nothing has gone as promised, planned or expected by President Obama. Instead, the entire country has watched him try to dodge or make excuses for every barricade or bump along the road. Each roadblock has led Americans to seriously question the president’s ability to lead and lowered confidence in his promises.

 Republicans have warned about the unworkable, unfair nature of Obamacare since it was passed. Not one Republican ever voted for it, and since taking back the House majority, members have consistently voted for full or partial-repeal bills to lessen the harmful impact on Americans. In fact, seven of the partial-repeal bills have been passed by the Senate and signed into law by the president.

 However, since the law wasn’t implemented right away, the problems associated with it were not felt immediately. During the three years after passage, ample time for roll-out preparation, Americans just kept hearing promises and assurances from the president in response to every concern, including his now-infamous words, “If you like your health plan, you can keep it.” Not surprisingly, we’ve discovered this isn’t and was never meant to be the case.

But the first real signal of the White House acknowledging the law’s problems came in July of this summer when the Administration announced a one-year delay of the employer mandate. While this news eliminated the burdensome, expensive requirement placed on businesses to provide healthcare during 2014, individuals are still expected and required to purchase insurance or face fines. As I have said before, it is hypocritical and unfair for the president to give businesses a break and ignore individuals.

On October 1, the healthcare law saw an entirely new set of problems abound with the launch of—a site that was clearly not ready for primetime. During the first month, the site was unable to handle high traffic, save most user information or provide helpful customer service, resulting in few people actually signing up for coverage. In fact, just last week, official enrollment numbers revealed that only 106,185 Americans selected a plan in October. Out of that number, only 346 Oklahomans selected a plan.

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