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Entries in Obamacare (1422)

Thursday
Feb022012

NH Democrats and Policy Leaders Condemn GOP Attacks on Medicare

Concord, N.H. - Democrats and policy leaders condemned Republican attacks on Medicare.  Republicans have tried to end Medicare with the reckless Paul Ryan budget, are attempting to turn New Hampshire's Medicare program into a block grant though the creation of an instate compact, and reports show that Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney made hundreds of thousands of dollars off of a company involved in Medicare fraud.

 

"Over the past twelve to thirteen months, the Republican Party has made perfectly clear their utter disregard for Medicare.  As much as we know anything about where Mitt 'Say anything' Romney really stands on an issue, it is clear that he is against this critical program," said Ray Buckely, Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party. "Mitt Romney's economic plan embraces the Cut, Cap and Balance approach in the House, including a Balanced Budget Amendment that would require devastating cuts to Social Security and Medicare. Romney also supports the Paul Ryan budget plan championed by House Republicans that would end Medicare as we know it and double out-of-pocket costs for seniors - many of whom rely on this program to make ends meet."

 

Medicare is a critical and life saving program for countless thousands of New Hampshire residents, and it promises to be key issue in the 2012 elections.  Since the 2010 elections, Republicans in New Hampshire and nationally have made ending and slashing Medicare a key part of their platform, putting countless thousands of senior citizens at risk.

 

"Turning Medicare into a voucher program where seniors have to purchase private health insurance would also put at risk what people like most about Medicare:  that they can continue their relationship with their own doctors.  If they have to choose doctors from within a carrier's network, they may possibly have to leave the doctor they have trusted for years.  That's not fair," said Representative Cindy Rosenwald of Nashua of the Republican initiative to turn New Hampshire's Medicare program into a block grant with HB1560. 

 

"We believe that to move our economy forward, it is vital that we remain steadfast in our commitment to assist the most vulnerable, including our senior citizens - that paved the way before us.  That is why we have supported the fight against Medicare fraud.  We increased awareness of the issue among SEA members and retirees and are doing our part to expose Medicare fraud as early as possible," said Diana Lacey, president of SEIU Local 1984.

 

Thursday
Feb022012

US Rep Bass Votes to Repeal Insolvent, Costly 'CLASS Act' in Health Care Law

WASHINGTON – Congressman Charles F. Bass (NH-02) today voted to repeal the fiscally unsustainable Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act, a program within the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) which even the Obama Administration finally admitted last fall to be insolvent.

Bass said:

“Long-term care insurance is an important and worthy type of health care program, but the CLASS program was simply unsustainable.  At a time when massive debts and deficits are crushing our long-term economic and fiscal health, it does not make sense to continue to prop up a program that everyone on both sides of the aisle, as well as the Secretary of Health and Human Services, has deemed to be insolvent.  Repealing this program once and for all will give Congress a chance to work toward viable solutions to providing assistance for those with long-term care needs and address our nation’s health care challenges in a way that won’t threaten our fiscal solvency.”

The intent of the CLASS Act was to develop a federally-run voluntary insurance program for purchasing community living assistance services and long-term care insurance.  Numerous concerns about the program’s long-term sustainability and affordability for consumers were raised by experts, organizations such as the unbiased American Academy of Actuaries, and even the actuary for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which is the agency through which the program would be administered.  However, using misrepresentative budgetary practices, the Administration claimed the CLASS program accounted for half of the savings under PPACA.

The legislation to repeal the CLASS program passed the House Energy and Commerce Committee, on which Bass sits, in November by a bipartisan vote of 33-17.

http://bass.house.gov

Tuesday
Jan312012

CEI Today: Kagan & Obamacare, labor union politics, the EPA job killer & more

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
In the News Today


 Also featuring...

 
CEI IN THE NEWS

 THE "FRED WEEKLY"

SCOTUS & OBAMACARE - HANS BADER

Openmarket.org:
Justic Kagan Should Recuse Herself From Obamacare Case

Only in Bizarro World can you claim someone is your attorney — and thus shielded by attorney work-product privilege — and then insist in the very next breath that they never represented you. But that is what the Obama administration and Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan are doing. The Obama administration refuses to release its communications with Kagan about health care litigation back when she was the administration’s Solicitor General, on the grounds that they are covered by attorney work-product protection. Yet, contradictorily, it and Kagan insist that she never acted as the administration’s lawyer in the matter, and thus doesn’t need to recuse herself from hearing the constitutional challenges to Obamacare that will be decided by the Supreme Court this year.  >View the commentary on Openmarket.org

LABOR UNION POLITICS - TREY KOVACS

Openmarket.org:
Michigan SEIU Scam the Product of Government Collective Bargaining

 

Proponents of government collective bargaining view it as a fundamental human right. The shameful actions of SEIU in Michigan, however, undermine this claim.

In 2005, Michigan lawmakers signed off to create the Michigan Quality Community Care Council (MQC3). MQC3 maintains a registry of homecare providers to assist Medicaid recipients looking for a caregiver. In reality, the primary function of MQC3 was to make 45,000 private homecare providers government employees and dues-paying union members.

In 2006, SEIU took advantage of Michigan law deeming homecare providers government employees. To gain exclusive representation SEIU organized a covert union campaign. The stealth-organizing tactic led to 20 percent voter turnout and SEIU won a landslide victory.

Soon thereafter, SEIU obtained a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with the state. The events following the CBA expose the dangers of government union political influence and permanence of CBAs. > View the full commentary on Openmarket.org

> Read more on labor policy at Workplacechoice.org



 

SINDUSTRY NEWS - MICHELLE MINTON

Openmarket.org:
Alcohol Regulation Roundup

In national news: Congressman Kurt Schrader of Oregon announced last week that he is withdrawing his support of the CARE Act, the piece of legislation that will likely make it more difficult for small producers of wine, beer, and spirits to reach the market. In his statement, Rep. Schrader noted that after listening to the concerns of Oregon’s wine growers he now believes the legislation would be detrimental to their industry.  > View the full commentary on state and national alcohol regulation on Openmarket.org


> Read more by Michelle Minton, CEI Fellow in Consumer Policy Studies


 

EPA JOB KILLER

Globalwarming.org:EPA’s Big Mercury Lie Already Killing Jobs


Recently, I blogged about EPA’s big mercury lie. In a nutshell, the Agency claims that its ultra-expensive new Mercury and Air Toxics rule is appropriate and necessary in order to protect fetuses from developmental disorders. Yet, according to EPA’s own analysis, the new mercury regulation serves to protect America’s supposed population of pregnant, subsistence fisherwomen, who eat 300 pounds of self-caught fish reeled in exclusively from the most polluted bodies of water. To put it another way, this regulation, which costs $10 billion annually, safeguards a population that doesn’t exist. > View the full commentary on Globalwarming.org

> Read more by energy policy experts on Globalwarming.org


 

Ten Thousand Commandments

By Wayne Crews

Welcome to The Other National Debt -- The Cost of Regulation


-> Read Today's Decrees

 

CEI is a non-profit, non-partisan public policy group dedicated to the principles of free enterprise and limited government.  For more information about CEI, please visit our website, cei.org, and blogs, Globalwarming.org and OpenMarket.org.  Follow CEI on Twitter! Twitter.com/ceidotorg.

Tuesday
Jan312012

RLCNH REBUKES CALLS FOR A STATE HEALTH INSURANCE EXCHANGE UNDER OBAMACARE

A State Insurance Exchange Would Voluntarily Accept Obamacare and Send State Taxpayers the Bill

CONCORD, N.H.—The Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire rebukes the idea that Republicans should remove uncertainty by establishing a state health insurance exchange under the terms of Obamacare, as such a move would voluntarily bind the state under the control of the U.S. Health and Human Services Department while sending New Hampshire taxpayers the bill.

Contrary to arguments from some insurance regulators, insurance companies and industry groups, creating a state exchange will remove New Hampshire’s local control and ensure Obamacare is fully enacted in New Hampshire, whether the federal law is repealed or not. In addition, establishing a state insurance exchange under Obamacare requires the state to pay for the full cost of implementation starting in 2015, which could cost New Hampshire taxpayers anywhere from $10 million to $47 million a year, according to HTMS, a North Dakota health care consulting company.

“The bottom line is that the federal government has created uncertainty by passing an unworkable federal law that depends on states to put in the time and money to fix all of its faults,” said Carolyn McKinney, chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire. “The cloud of uncertainty created by President Obama and the Democratic Congress won’t go away just because we accept Obamacare by creating a state health insurance exchange. In fact, these exchanges will distort the market, which will make for even more uncertainty.”

Those arguing for a state insurance exchange have clamored for predictability, but by establishing a state insurance exchange, the only predictable outcome will be that the state will be voluntarily implementing the terms of the Obamacare law that voters soundly rejected in 2010. The mammoth state bureaucracy created would only serve as a nominal state organization, but it would take all of its orders from Washington bureaucrats, who would set the rules for selling insurance plans within the state, thus reducing real competition and increasing the costs of providing health insurance.

What makes matters worse, under SB 163, the N.H. Senate bill that establishes a state exchange, “poison pill” language would eliminate only those sections found unconstitutional by the Supreme Court or repealed by the Congress, but it would leave everything else in place. If the bill passes, it would keep a state health insurance exchange in place even if the federal government fully rejects New Hampshire’s proposal, thus leaving us with a federal exchange plan funded by New Hampshire taxpayers.

The better approach is HB 1297, which would prohibit the state from enacting an exchange and make it harder for the federal government to implement the law. In fact, the more states that opt not to create a health insurance exchange will then send the federal bureaucrats scrambling to come up with one, without the time or funding to create one that will work. If New Hampshire and other states around the country say no to a state health insurance exchange, it all but guarantees that Congress will have to repeal or replace Obamacare, which is what the people want.

“Creating a state exchange voluntarily accepts Obamacare in New Hampshire,” McKinney said. “If we do that, this Republican Legislature will be directly opposing the voters who sent them to Concord to stand up against this federal overreach. These Republicans, and not the Obama Democrats, would be responsible for the consequences of Obamacare in New Hampshire.

“If Republicans act now to definitively reject a state exchange, however; the Republican Legislature stands a better chance of fulfilling the mandate of New Hampshire voters and leading the way toward true health insurance reform,” McKinney said.

For more information about the conclusions reached by RLCNH about state health insurance exchanges under Obamacare, please refer to these studies by the Cato Institute, the Idaho Freedom Foundation, and the Goldwater Institute.

###


About The Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire
RLCNH, a state chapter of the national Republican Liberty Caucus, was launched in December 2004 to promote and advance traditional Republican Party values, such as low taxes and spending, limited government, individual liberty, personal responsibility, free enterprise and loyalty to the U.S. and N.H. constitutions.

Wednesday
Jan252012

NH Democratic Lawmakers Launch “Don’t Let the GOP End Medicare in NH” Campaign 

Concord, NH - Today, Democratic Leadership in the House and Senate launched a campaign to protect Medicare in New Hampshire from the reckless Republican takeover contained in HB1560. The bill sponsored by Republican House Majority Leader DJ Bettencourt and Republican Senate Finance Chair Chuck Morse, but written by out of state special interests, would give the legislature full discretion to raise the eligibility age and slash services for New Hampshire's senior citizens on Medicare.

 

"In short, this bill will end Medicare as we know it in New Hampshire," said Senator Sylvia Larsen.  "But sadly, it doesn't stop there. It would also take over Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program(CHIP) and other federally funded health care initiatives. Surely you don't have to be a doctor to see this is a disastrous plan for health care in our state."

 

"This bill puts Tea Party ideology before the best interests of the people of New Hampshire, would cripple Medicare, and is an unconstitutional attempt to supersede federal law," said Representative Terie Norelli. "Unfortunately the sponsors are not backbenchers or freshmen representatives; it is the Republican leadership in both the House and Senate."

 

"New Hampshire's senior citizens have paid their share into Medicare for decades," said Senator D'Allesandro. "Democrats will not allow this legislature to break the promise made to those hard working men and women."

 

"Not only does this bill defy common sense, it is the definition of fiscal irresponsibility,"said Representative Mary Jane Wallner. "In tough economic times when Medicaid participation typically increases, New Hampshire taxpayers would see their tax rates skyrocket. This Republican legislature already passed an irresponsible and unbalanced budget that killed nearly 2,000 jobs. Their reckless fiscal policies must be stopped."

 

The full text of the petition is below.

 


New Hampshire Republicans: Don't End Medicare in the Granite State 

[Link: http://www.change.org/petitions/new-hampshire-republicans-dont-end-medicare-in-the-granite-state]
As part of their reckless Tea Party agenda, New Hampshire Republicans in Concord want to end Medicare as we know it.   

 

Republican House Majority Leader DJ Bettencourt and Republican Senate Finance Chairman Chuck Morse have sponsored HB1560, which would end Medicare in New Hampshire. Instead of a stable, reliable Medicare plan, seniors would be subjected to a budget process every two years that could slash benefits and services at the whim of the state legislature. The legislature also could choose to eliminate the Children's Health Insurance Program. This irresponsible bill would attempt to nullify federal law and put thousands of Granite State senior citizens and children at risk of losing health insurance and health care services.


We successfully defended Medicare from Republicans in Congress and with your support we will stop Concord Republicans from taking over of Medicare, too.

 

HB1560 is not only fiscally irresponsible, it also could endanger the health of New Hampshire's senior citizens, disabled and low income residents by eliminating coverage for proven treatments and disease prevention services.  At least 350,000 New Hampshire residents would lose their stable, reliable Medicare and Medicaid coverage.

 

Even the extremely conservative Union Leader editorial board called the bill "strange" and "convoluted," and argued it violates Article 6 of the U.S. Constitution.  HB1560 would leave discretion for operating Medicare, Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program and other federally funded health care initiatives in the hands of the legislature.  From slashing coverage to raising the eligibility age, every year radical and dangerous changes would be on the table.