Heitkamp: Don’t Call The Obamacare Mandate A Mandate
Liberal Senate candidate Heidi Heitkamp’s biggest obstacle this election cycle is her past support of the controversial Obamacare law which 64% of North Dakotans support repealing. She’s tried a number of strategies to distance herself from the law, including less-than-honest maneuvers such as inventing past skepticism about it, but while visiting a nursing home in Minot Heitkamp came up with a new one.
She’s now going with a down right Orwellian re-definition of what the law actually says.
Heitkamp doesn’t like referring to the law’s requirement that everyone have insurance as a mandate.
“It presumes that people don’t buy health insurance because they don’t want it. People don’t buy health insurance because they can’t afford it. We need to make it more affordable,” she said.
The law requires you to buy health insurance, and if you don’t buy health insurance you’re hit with a big tax. I think that meets most people’s definition of a mandate. What’s more, there are a lot of people who choose not to buy health insurance. These are people who self-insure. Since this is a free country, that ought to be something people are allowed to do.
Heitkamp also criticized the legislature for not passing a Republican-backed bill to implement Obamacare’s health insurance exchanges. “State exchanges are part of the federal healthcare law,” reads the Minot Daily News article. “Heitkamp said the exchanges will increase competition and bring premiums down.”
I’d like to hear Heitkamp answer how it is health care exchanges create competition? How is a government-controlled exchange, where the only policies that may be offered are those approved by the government, promoting competition? If we really wanted to promote competition, why wouldn’t we end government insurance mandates and allow policies to be sold across state line?
The truth is that it’s not really about competition, and politicians like Heitkamp know that. It’s about government control, but that’s not an easy sell to the public, so instead politicians like Heitkamp claim these sort of policies promote competition when they really do the exact opposite.
That’s why companies like insurance giant Blue Cross Blue Shield support the health care exchanges. It’s not because they want more competition. It’s because they want to limit their competition.Tags: election 2012, Heidi Heitkamp, insurance mandate, North Dakota News, obamacare