Thursday, President Obama announced that 14 million Americans now have health insurance as a result of the Affordable Care Act. A last minute surge in March resulted in a total of 8 million Americans who have purchased private health insurance on the exchanges. At the beginning of the year, the CBO projected that only 6 million would enroll due to the website problems last fall.
In addition to the 8 million who bought private policies on the exchanges, 3 million young people under 26 became insured under their parents’ policies, and an additional 3 million obtained insurance under the Medicaid expansion as a result of the law. Also, 5 million Americans are in the same insurance pool even if they did not buy their policies on the exchanges.
The other good news released by the president is that 35 percent of those who bought insurance on the exchanges are under thirty-five. This happened despite a multi-million dollar ad campaign by the Koch brothers and Republicans aimed at convincing young people to be totally irresponsible and not buy health insurance at all.
This followed on an earlier announcement by the CBO indicating that ObamaCare will cost $108 billion less than previously thought. Premiums are also 15% lower than expected.
"This law is working," Obama said. "This law won't solve all the problems in our health care system. We know we've got more work to do, but we now know for a fact that repealing the Affordable Care Act would increase the deficit, raise premiums for millions of Americans, and take insurance away from millions more."
According to the Gallup organization, about 12 million previously uninsured Americans have gained coverage since last fall. That is millions more than Gallup found in March and suggests that as many as 4 million people have signed up for some kind of insurance in the last several weeks. Just 12.9% of adults nationally lacked coverage in the first half of April according to initial data from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. That's the lowest rate since the survey began in 2008.
"They said nobody would sign up, “Obama said at the news conference. “They were wrong about that. They said it would be unaffordable for the country. They were wrong about that.”
The president went on to blast Republican governors who have refused to take federal funds for an expansion of Medicaid under ObamaCare. He said the governors are standing in the way of coverage out of political spite.
Over 5 million Americans who earn wages below the poverty line would have insurance under Medicaid at no cost to the states. These governors are telling their poor constituents to suffer because the governors want to sabotage ObamaCare for political gain. Some feel that this is tantamount to sedition. It certainly rises to malfeasance in office.
Despite these numbers, Republicans intend to make repeal of ObamaCare their only issue this fall. They want every word repealed, but have nothing to replace it with. The only health care plan Republicans ever came up with was Romneycare. They loved it until Obama adopted the plan. Now they hate it, and are unabashedly unashamed of the hypocrisy.
There are two real reasons Republicans oppose the Affordable Care Act. First, it became law under an African-American Democratic president. Secondly, billionaires like the Koch Brothers are opposed because it might slightly cut into their obscene profits. What the Kochs want, Republicans are bound to deliver or face a primary.
Meanwhile, facts are debunking all the myths Republicans have been spreading about the Affordable Care Act since 2009.