I want to promote this excellent comment from reader Ann, on our recent post “Pat Meehan Wants Backsies on His Shutdown Vote.” This can’t be said enough: lots of people work full-time jobs that don’t offer insurance. Insurance on the pre-Obamacare individual market has been crazy expensive, and especially unaffordable for young people just entering the labor market who aren’t earning that much money yet. Also, as in Ann’s example, it’s more common these days to get hired as a contractor or a freelancer than it used to be. That’s fine, but it really highlights the absurdity of running such a critical part of our safety net through employers, and increasingly just large employers. Health insurance needs to be guaranteed regardless of one’s employment status:
My niece turned 26 this past August, when she became ineligible for her parents’s health insurance, (which lasted, thank goodness, until age 26, thank Obamacare). She has been working for 3 years for the same company. The company hired her as a contractor, so they would not have to pay any benefits. She is happy to have a job and is afraid to complain. I’m complaining for her.
She is now eligible to sign up for affordable care (the ACA dubbed Obamacare by the republicans) but the insurance doesn’t kick in until January 1, 2014. We hope and pray nothing happens to her, at least, until she is covered by insurance.
As a member of the Republican Party, you helped shut down our government over the issue of offering the uninsured affordable insurance. Of all the possible issues to protest, your party chooses a 31/2 year old law of the land, sign by Congress, the president and affirmed by the supreme court. Your party does not shut the goernment down over war, nor finance reform but healthcare, which is 17% of the budget. I thought the Republicans wanted to reduce the deficit? Obamacare which is based on the American Heritage plan (Ana as Romneycare), is a start in reducing the deficit. If Rebulicans don’t like the way the law is structured, what do you offer as an alternative?! Nothing.
Now, at the last minute, you want to take my niece’s choice away?. You want to do away with a law that will cover uninsured WORKING Americans?
Forget skipping your pay, that’s not as honorable as going without insurance like my niece. See how you feel, knowing that at any time you or your wife might need to see a doctor or worse, have an emergency and need a hospital (no time to shop around). Will the hospital reject you, send you to a rare public hospital (funded by the government) which has a minimum 5-7 hour wait, or if your lucky, the hospital admits you. Of course, if the latter happens, then you will have to pay an Astronomical bill which is full of double billing (thank the chargemaster). If you can’t pay, your only alternative would be to declare bankruptcy (like the majority of bankruptcies which are due to healthcare bills)! Is this the America the Republicans are designing? Why? Who does this benefit?
Open the government, either leave Obamacare alone or improve it and dump the crazy minority base, they are uninformed.