NRCC - Higher Premiums, Limited Access: What Other Surprises Are In Store?

As Grim Consequences Emerge from Healthcare Takeover, New Hampshire Voters Wonder: Does Carol Shea-Porter Even Know What’s In the Bill? 


Washington- Democrats like Carol Shea-Porter have been working furiously to convince voters that their healthcare takeover was not the disaster it appeared to be, but a mounting body of evidence is proving what the American people have known all along. To make matters worse, it looks like Shea-Porter didn’t even read the bill at all – unless she meant to strip herself and her staff of their existing healthcare coverage.


That’s right, a provision uncovered weeks after the bill passed reveals that Shea-Porter may have forced her own staff to lose their healthcare coverage. The New York Times raises an important question: If Shea-Porter didn’t know about this, did she have any idea what she was forcing upon the American people when she signed off on her party’s trillion-dollar healthcare takeover?

“In a new report, the Congressional Research Service says the law may have significant unintended consequences for the ‘personal health insurance coverage’ of senators, representatives and their staff members.

“For example, it says, the law may ‘remove members of Congress and Congressional staff’ from their current coverage, in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, before any alternatives are available.

“The confusion raises the inevitable question: If they did not know exactly what they were doing to themselves, did lawmakers who wrote and passed the bill fully grasp the details of how it would influence the lives of other Americans?” (Robert Pear, “Baffled by Health Plan? So Are Some Lawmakers,” New York Times, 4/12/10) 

Unfortunately for New Hampshire taxpayers, that’s the easy answer. The alternative is much more disturbing: Shea-Porter rubber-stamped her party’s healthcare agenda even though she knew it would fall woefully short of its promises:

“Public outrage over double-digit rate hikes for health insurance may have helped push President Obama's healthcare overhaul across the finish line, but the new law does not give regulators the power to block similar increases in the future.

“And now, with some major companies already moving to boost premiums and others poised to follow suit, millions of Americans may feel an unexpected jolt in the pocketbook.” (Noam Levey, “Healthcare Overhaul Won’t Stop Premium Increases,” Los Angeles Times, 4/13/10)


And the broken promises don’t end at higher costs. With new pressures on the country’s healthcare system, a growing doctor shortage means that Americans will have a tougher time getting the care they need:


“Experts warn there won't be enough doctors to treat the millions of people newly insured under the law. At current graduation and training rates, the nation could face a shortage of as many as 150,000 doctors in the next 15 years, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges.”


“A shortage of primary-care and other physicians could mean more-limited access to health care and longer wait times for patients.” (Suzanne Sataline and Shirley S. Wang, “Medical Schools Can’t Keep Up,” Wall Street Journal, 4/12/10)


“The evidence is piling up and none of it looks good for Carol Shea-Porter,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “New Hampshire families were looking for lower healthcare costs and better access, but Democrats gave them the exact opposite. Did Shea-Porter knowingly rubber-stamp a bill that drives up premiums and limits access to doctors, or did she simply not bother to read legislation that could affect every American and cost taxpayers a trillion dollars? Either way, it’s yet another sign that New Hampshire families need a real representative in Washington rather than someone who blindly signs off on the radical Obama-Pelosi agenda without being honest about the consequences.”