Friday marks the second anniversary of President Obama’s health-care bill being signed into law. At the time the president claimed, “When I sign this bill, all of the overheated rhetoric over reform will finally confront the reality of reform." He was unfortunately correct. The reality of the law has been painful.
The past two years have illustrated how many people will be hurt by the law, not helped. Many of my constituents remain angry they will be forced to purchase health insurance or pay a fine, while businesses have expressed fears they will not be able to sustain the extra costs associated with the law and its mandates, further crippling our nation’s economy. But even amongst all these concerns, it may be our seniors who are the real victims under the president’s health-care law.
According to the economists at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, unless changes are made, Medicare will face insolvency in 10 years. Yet instead of strengthening the program which millions of seniors and disabled Americans rely on, Obama’s law will speed up its demise by cutting $500 billion that would have been spent on Medicare to finance new entitlement programs.
The president’s hand-picked 15-member Independent Payment Advisory Board is even more troubling. Its purpose is to control future Medicare spending so that if Medicare grows beyond what is sustainable, the board has the power to recommend cuts. Right now, efforts to repeal the power of this group of unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats are under way and receiving strong bipartisan support.