No one ever has said Randy Bryce was a policy genius. They still won’t.
In a blog posting on his campaign website which doubled as a fund raising plea earlier this week, steelworker and Democratic congressional candidate Randy Bryce told the story of how while visited his father at an assisted living center, one of the caregivers mentioned to him she was on the verge of losing her insurance and couldn’t afford to buy a cheaper plan.
When I took my dad back to the assisted living facility where he lives after spending Christmas Eve with my family, we had a sad moment.
One of the women who takes care of him ran up to me. She told me about how she can’t afford health insurance anymore. My Dad will be taken care of, but the woman who takes care of him won’t be.
That’s wrong. On so many levels.
While Randy Bryce is correct in saying it is wrong, he’s only giving us half of the story related to this woman’s plight. The rest is a not so veiled shot at Speaker Ryan’s attempt to reform various federal entitlement programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. This leaves plenty of questions to just why this caregiver could no longer afford health insurance.
Questions like: Why does the assisted living facility not offer health care benefits to its employees? Does this particular caregiver run her own small business? How much have her premiums increased since 2010? Is this caregiver married, if so, why is she not on her spouse’s health insurance? Does she already qualify for Medicaid, or does she not know she already qualifies?
All of these could be answered if you look at the Affordable Care Act, better known as ObamaCare and what it did to buyers of individual health insurance packages as well as those of small businesses with fewer than 50 employees.
The ACA has done an immense amount of damage to these areas of the health care market. For individuals, this has meant seeing premiums skyrocket to levels which are completely out of people’s price ranges. Premiums in Wisconsin alone averaged a 36 percent increase for those buying through the federal exchanges according to news reports from October 2017.
Not only that, but they lost purchasing options. Three companies – Anthem, Molina, and Health Tradition – announced they would no longer provide plans in Wisconsin. This left higher costing plans for those seeking health insurance do to few companies competing for their health care dollars.
Then there’s the reality which may be affecting this woman’s employer. After delays in its implementation by the Obama Administration, 2017 was the first time the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) would be enforcing the law’s employer mandate. This portion of the law required companies with 50 or more employees to have health coverage for all employees or face a hefty fine. As a result, a number of people saw themselves made part-time employees working less than 30 hours a week or made temporary employees so they would not be a company’s “51st employee.”
As usual, Bryce relates nothing about the damage that ObamaCare has wrecked on the American health care system in his story about the caregiver. Instead, he only touts a “Medicare for All” package which at last estimate would cost taxpayers over $32 Trillion to implement; something the country – already $20 trillion in debt – simply can’t afford.
While Randy Bryce’s story is compelling as a tale of tragedy, it was an avoidable one. One which was made possible by the very law and the very government he believes would know best at managing the nation’s health care system. In reality, what Bryce really did was lay out the reasons why ObamaCare continues to collapse and should have never been made into law in the first place.
Given his inability to relay even basic policy knowledge on his increasing rare media appearances, it’s unlikely that Randy Bryce even knows ObamaCare helped make this caregiver’s plight worse. Maybe instead of hitting up Hollywood for campaign donations, Bryce would be better off using his time to read up on what ObamaCare has actually done to the country.