House Democrats released a far-reaching universal health care bill on Wednesday that would extend Medicare to every American, creating a costly single-payer health care system.
The bill is being sponsored by Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., and cosponsored by 107 members of the House.
According to Jayapal, the “ambitious,” “bold” legislation will “ensure that every American has the health care they deserve” by ending Medicare’s eligibility age, currently set at 65, and eliminating all insurance copays, deductibles, and premiums. The proposal would also cover the cost of prescription drugs, substance abuse, dental, and maternal care.
These are, indeed, “bold” promises, but why should Americans trust liberal promises about health care after years of failing to deliver on the promises they made the last time the party overhauled health care?
Democrats’ newest pledge to fix America’s health care system comes just one week after a new analysis by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) thoroughly debunked one of the biggest myths Democrats peddled while successfully blocking Republicans from repealing and replacing ObamaCare in 2017.
While Republicans sought to repeal and replace ObamaCare in 2017, Democrats routinely alleged that any legislation passed by Republicans would result in 14 million [JH2] Americans “losing” their health coverage in the first year following ObamaCare’s demise, a number they said would balloon to 24 million over 10 years. The widely-used “14 million” and “24 million” estimates came from an analysis of Republicans’ health care reform plans conducted by the Congressional Budget Office, which scores proposed legislation using measures many have long known result in faulty conclusions.
With the CBO figures in hand, Democrats successfully scuttled ObamaCare repeal legislation and several GOP replacement plans by scaring millions of Americans into believing that any attempt to replace ObamaCare would result in disaster. However, Republicans did manage to effectively eliminate the individual mandate penalty—by reducing it to $0—when they passed tax reform legislation. Although the mandate penalty was reduced to $0 in December 2017, it didn’t go into effect until the 2019 enrollment period.
Democrats have proven repeatedly that government bureaucrats can’t effectively manage the health care system—or anything, for that matter.
Now that ObamaCare open enrollment for 2019 has ended and sign-up data has been fully analyzed, CMS says the “14 million” estimate used to scare Americans and a small number of congressional Republicans was way off. Instead, CMS reports only an additional 2.5 million [JH3] Americans will be uninsured in 2019 as a result of the elimination of the individual mandate penalty, and virtually all of them have chosen to go uninsured.
You can add the “14 million” claim to the long list of failed predictions and faulty promises made by Democrats over the past decade.
First, Americans were told by President Barack Obama and the Democrat-led Congress of 2009 and 2010 that ObamaCare would allow every American to keep the doctors and health insurance plans they liked. Within a few years of ObamaCare’s passage, millions of people had lost their health insurance and their doctors.
President Obama also told[JH4] Americans they would save as much as $2,500 per year under the Affordable Care Act. Since the ACA went into effect, premiums have doubled[JH5] and deductibles have skyrocketed.
Democrats also promised ObamaCare would make health insurance markets more competitive, but ObamaCare’s costly mandates have pushed many health insurers out of ObamaCare markets, leaving people with very few health insurance options available. In 2019, Americans in 77 percent of U.S. counties only have one or two insurance options available in their ObamaCare exchange.
After years of making the U.S. health care system worse, Democrats are now asking you to give them the keys to the entire health care kingdom, while at the same time admitting they aren’t sure how they’ll pay for their gigantic Medicare-for-all plan. The Mercatus Center estimates the cost of Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., single-payer proposal, which is similar to the one now offered by House Democrats, would cost $32 trillion in its first 10 years—and that’s a conservative estimate. (Just a reminder: the federal government is already $22 trillion in debt, with no plans to balance the budget.)
Giving liberals more power to run our health care system would be comparable to putting arsonists in charge of the fire department. They’ve proven repeatedly that government bureaucrats can’t effectively manage the health care system—or anything, for that matter.
Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it. Hopefully, Americans have learned they can’t trust Democrats’ grand health care promises.