Let's not forget that it's called the "Affordable Care Act". The claimed objective was to lower costs. I'd say that they failed quite miserably at that.
Serious question and not meant to be contrary (meaning, I'm not going to get into a senseless debate), but wasn't the "affordable" part supposed to refer to the uninsured who were uninsured because insurance was unaffordable? Of course, I could be just another uninformed American. But at least I'm not an uninsured uninformed American.
No. Obama repeatedly made claims about how the cost to the typical American family would be reduced under his plan:
Here, he's clearly addressing total health care costs rising over time and the need to address that. He's not just talking about poor people.
The problem is not that folks are trying to avoid getting health care; the problem is they can’t afford it. My plan emphasizes lowering costs, not only setting up a government plan so that people who don’t have health insurance can buy into it and will get subsidized, but also making sure that those who have health insurance but are struggling with rising co-payments, deductibles, premiums. Under Bush, families are paying 78% more on health care than they were previously. We put in a catastrophic re-insurance plan that will help reduce those premiums for families by an average of about $2,500 per year. Every expert that’s looked at this has said there is not a single person out there who’s going to want health care who will not get it under my plan. My plan also says children will be able to stay on the parents’ plan up until the age of 25. Both Edwards and Hillary have a hardship exemption, where, if people can’t afford to buy health care, you exempt them, so that you don’t count them.
This one's really ironic given that he's criticizing Romney's health care plan for the whole "mandate and fine" bit that is precisely what his own health care plan ended out doing (only on a much larger scale). Again though, he clearly sold his health care reform plan on the idea that it would actually reduce costs, so much so that people wouldn't just choose to pay the fine rather than buy the insurance.
That's clearly not what happened though.
If, in fact, we are not making healthcare affordable enough, which is what’s happening right now, and you mandate on families to buy health insurance that they can’t afford and if they don’t buy it you fine them or in some other way take money for them. What is happening in Massachusetts right now, which is that folks are having to pay fines and they don’t have health care. They’d rather go ahead and take the fine because they can’t afford the coverage. My core belief is that people desperately want coverage, and my plan provides those same subsidies. If they are provided those subsidies and they have good, quality care that’s available, then they will purchase it. That is my belief. I never said that we should try to go ahead and get single payer. What I said was that if I were starting from scratch, if we didn’t have a system in which employers had typically provided health care, I would probably go with a single-payer system.
And there's this:
“I’ll be a president who finally makes health care affordable to every single American by bringing Democrats and Republicans together. I’ll be a president who ends the tax break for companies that ship our jobs overseas and put a middle class tax cut into the pockets of working Americans. And I’ll be a president who ends this war in Iraq and finally brings our troops home. We are one nation and our time for change has come.”
Affordable to "every single American". Oh. And the other stuff is amusing too.
Here's one where he's very directly claiming to save money for everyone, including folks who already can "afford" health insurance.
My emphasis is on driving down the costs, taking on the insurance companies, making sure that they are limited in the ability to extract profits and deny coverage, and the drug companies have to do what’s right by their patients instead of simply hoarding their profits. We’ve got very conservative, credible estimates that say we can save families that do have health insurance about a thousand dollars a year, and we provide coverage for everybody else. We provide mandatory health care for children
I suppose I could keep going on, but hopefully that's sufficient to make the point. These are all quotes from Obama's 2008 campaign btw. So this is what he intended to do. What he actually ended out doing (well, his party technically) was to simply take the existing system, with its flaws, and make it bigger and more costly, while not actually fixing any of the problems.
Imagine if we decided that cars were too expensive and many people couldn't afford them, and those who could were spending far too much on them. Enter the government. Now imagine if the proposed solution to this problem was to mandate that every single American must purchase a new car once every 5 years, and that every car sold in the US had to have 11+ air bags, heated/cooled leather seats, a navigation system, run flat tires, voice activated systems, bluetooth connectivity, multi-zone air conditioning, automatic locks, windows, etc, and the full range of "bells and whistles". Any sane person would realize that this wouldn't decrease the cost of cars, but would dramatically increase it, right? Before, I could buy an old beater for a few grand if I wanted. Now, I can't.
That's more or less what Obamcare does for health care. It proposes to make health care more affordable by mandating that everyone must purchase health insurance, and further mandates the minimum coverage that health insurance must provide (which basically means paying for a bunch of stuff whether you want/need it or not). And it's also insane to even suggest that this would reduce costs. How? It can't do so. It will increase costs. Not a little bit. But dramatically.