If elected, Mitt Romney vows to “end” it.
If re-elected, Barack Obama says he’s “open to amending” it.
But regardless of who wins the presidency next month, conscientious voters need to know this: Obamacare is already costing taxpayers lots of money, and within the next few months it will cost millions of dollars more.
It’s bad enough that President Obama’s “if you like your Doctor, you can keep your Doctor”promise has proven false. And it’s bad enough that his promise to “bend the healthcare cost curve downward” has proven to be fictitious, as well (according to MIT Economist Jonathan Gruber prices for private insurance will likely increase 30% by 2016 – this, despite Gruber’s support of the President’s claims in 2009).
Now, state governments are spending taxpayer-funded time and resources figuring out how to comply with the federal mandates. The Obamacare law has imposed a deadline of November 16th, whereby the states must explain to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services what they intend to do about the establishment of their respective “healthcare exchanges” - the government organized group of standardized health insurance plans from which citizens private citizens and organizations will be permitted to purchase health plans – and the states are deciding now how to proceed.
According to the law, each state can choose one of three options when it comes to setting up an exchange: A) the state can establish an exchange on its own; B) the state can let the federal government set up an exchange on the state’s behalf; or C) the state can choose a “hybrid” approach, and co-mingle both state and federal authorities and resources and produce an exchange together.
Back in August of this year, members of the U.S. House of Representatives heard testimony about the exchanges from Michael Cannon, Director of Health Policy Studies at the Cato Institute. Cannon noted at the time that, given the way the Obamacare law is written, the sitting Secretary of Health and Human Services (whomever that happens to be at any given time) has broad authority to impose requirements and restrictions on a “state exchange,” regardless of whether the individual state government constructs the exchange or if the federal government does it for the state. In cases where a state seeks to set up an exchange, the federal government will ultimately determine which health insurance plans will be “allowed” to be bought and sold in that state, and what those health insurance plans will cover.
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.