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.
Hold on, you said "no" but then you quoted him saying both what you suggested and what I suggested. So he said both, and we were both correct. But you refused to say "Actually, we're both correct." Now that's kind of senseless.
Um... Because your response strongly suggested that it was *only* about helping uninsured folks get coverage. You didn't say that it "also" referred to helping uninsured people get care. Which, if that was your specific point, is a pretty glaring omission.
But ok. Assuming that's what you meant to say, then yes, it also included that. But then we can also say that it failed at that too. Most of the estimates show that only a small portion of those who were previously uninsured will become ensured as a result of Obamacare. Most of them will simply choose to pay the fine (because the secret to the stats was that most of those counted as uninsured in the first place were healthy people who choose not to buy insurance). Folks working under the table (like a good portion of the 12 million or so illegals in this country) make up the other largest portion of those "uninsured". They wont be magically covered either.
What remains is a very small number of people who will theoretically be able to receive subsidies to help them afford to buy health insurance on the exchanges. That's still up in the air though, since the exchanges aren't getting nearly as many healthy people signing up (that's the first group I spoke of), so costs will end out adjusting upwards. The cost will end out being higher than claimed. A lot higher.
The end result is that it looks as though more Americans who had health insurance before Obamacare will lose it than those who didn't have health insurance will gain it. Which makes it a pretty miserable outcome.
I'll also point out that while "affordable" tends to apply to the cost to the consumer, many (like myself) find that to be a bit of wordplay all by itself. The government can choose to take over paying the cost of some good or service that consumers normally buy (or just subsidize it), but may actually pay more for it than the consumer would have (cause no free market, right?). So if I used to pay say $40/month for cable, and the government decides that cable TV should be "free", so it pays the cable company for my bill, but at the same time passes a law increasing the basic cable lineup to include many more channels (which thus drives up the cost), the fact that I, the consumer, am paying less money doesn't mean that the cable TV is less expensive. It's more expensive, it's just laundered through the government and paid for via taxes rather than directly via income.
We can sit around the argue the minute details of who pays how much, and what costs increase or decrease, but at the end of the day, I don't think it's unreasonable to conclude that if we pass a law which mandates that all health insurance must cover more care than before and must cover preexisting conditions, that this *must* result in a higher overall cost for that health insurance. The total bill for the entire nation will get higher. Hiding that with subsidies and taxes doesn't change that fact. It's a word game. While it may make health care more "affordable" for a tiny percentage of the population, for most people, their health care costs will increase. Whether that increase comes in the form of higher direct health care costs or higher taxes to make up the difference, or higher costs for food in restaurants, the total cost is higher.
So while maybe it's not an outright lie to call it "affordable", it's certainly a bit deceptive. We all pay for the cost, one way or another. let's not forget that.