On Thursday, the government's official Obamacare Facebook page was riddled with people expressing sticker shock over the government's high cost premiums after struggling for hours to wade through the technical failures vexing Obamacare exchanges all across the country.
"I am so disappointed," wrote one woman. "These prices are outrageous and there are huge deductibles. No one can afford this!" The comment received 169 "likes."
"There is NO WAY I can afford it," said one commenter after using the Kaiser Subsidy Calculator. "Heck right now I couldn't afford an extra 10$ [sic] a month...and oh apparently I make to [sic] much at 8.55/hour to get subsidies."
Another person shared a link found on the federal government's main Obamacare page listing premium estimates for small business employers:
The information is not very complete as I don't see anything about deductible or other detailed info, but it does given an actual price as to the "Premium." It is VERY SCARY!! For example, my insurance plan right now for my spouse and I costs $545 a month with 100% coverage after my $2500 deductible. We are both 32 years old. When I looked at this site for 80% coverage it says it will be $954.78 a month!!!! So compare my old Plan: 100% coverage for $545 a month To New Plan: 80% Coverage for $945 a month. This is only only an estimate but it is VERY Scary for me to see this kind of increase in rates and reduction in benefits!
A single mother of two said she is in school and working full-time while living "75% below the poverty level." She said she was shocked to learn she did not qualify for a healthcare subsidy. "Are you F'ing kidding me????" she wrote on the government's Obamacare Facebook page. "Where the HELL am I supposed to get $3,000 more a year to pay for this 'bronze' health insurance plan!?!??? And I DO NOT EVEN WANT INSURANCE to begin with!! This is frightening," she wrote.
Eventually, Healthcare.gov will stop crashing because the administration will beef up their servers to handle the load. When the 'glitches' get solved, the administration's problems will just be beginning. When he first started pitching the Affordable Care Act, President said that families would save $2,500 a year under his plan. According to one person, their health insurance premiums will jump $4,800 a year. That's before calculating the additional costs of going from full coverage after paying a $2,500 deductible to 80% after paying a $5,000 deductible.
This couple's health care costs will jump well in excess of $5,000 a year. At that price, they're better off not buying the insurance unless they need it.
President Obama's spin won't work when people experience this dramatic sticker shock. Besides that, Democrats standing with President Obama will get hurt in 2014. Senators like Mary Landrieu, Mark Begich, Mark Pryor and Kay Hagan should start writing their concession speeches.
They're already facing tough re-election fights. When people see the premiums they'll have to pay thanks to their senators' votes for the Affordable Care Act, those voters' first instinct will be to tar and feather their senators. These voters' first instinct won't be to thank them for voting to create the Affordable Care Act.