John Feehery: Speaking Engagements


Hating Obamacare

Posted on August 30, 2013



Why Do People Hate Obamacare?

There are legitimate reasons to dislike Obamacare and illegitimate reasons to hate Obamacare.

It is illegitimate to hate Obamacare because you hate the President.

I fear that is what is driving most of the passion in this debate and fueling most the talk about shutting down the government, defaulting on the debate and all of that other nonsense.

The right wing hates Obama.  They see him as a Marxist Muslim who wasn’t born here, somebody who might as well be the anti-Christ.

There is not much Obama can do to make those folks happy.  Some people are just going to haters.  The fact that Barack Obama has a funny name, had a Muslim father, hung around will Bill Ayers, is from Chicago, learned how to be a community organizer from Saul Alinsky, worshipped at a Church with pastor who hates white people (and that is no joke), well, some people just can’t over this set of facts.

They will not let themselves be led by a President who has won two election fairly overwhelmingly.

Some of these same folks hated Bill Clinton with the same passion, because he was a pot-smoking, draft-dodging, womanizing, former Hippie who traveled to Russia at the height of the cold war.

And some of those folks who really hated Clinton got their chance to impeach him when he “didn’t have sex with that woman, Miss Lewinsky,” although the impeachment drive ended up failing in the Senate (which was completely predictable).

Haters will hate.

And they are currently driving the train on Obamacare, in such a way as to take the spotlight off of the real problems with the law, and put the spotlight on themselves.

Because, at the end of the day, many of these haters are narcissists who see this battle as being all about them.

That being said, there are some real problems with Obamare.

First, there was the process.  As Nancy Pelosi famously said, the Democrats had to pass the law before they finally found out what was in it, and right now the American people are just finding out what was in in.

The process to pass this bill into law was an abomination.  The fierce partisanship with which is was whipped into passage made it suspect from the start.  No Republicans voted for it, and there were plenty of Democrats who didn’t want to vote for it.

It turns out that enacting a brand new entitlement when the country is going broke because it already has too many entitlements that it can’t afford, is not popular with a segment of the voting population who cares that our country is going broke.

But the President and the Senate Majority Leader and the then current Speaker broke arms and rammed through this whole new, needlessly complicated and hopelessly expensive law down the throats of the American people.

Second, for most Americans who already have health insurance (and for the record, most Americans already have health insurance), this new law was seen as a threat to their security.  Because, despite the fact that the President has said countless times that you can keep your health insurance if you want to, the reality is that many companies will choose to make their employees get their health insurance in these so-called exchanges, most of which aren’t even set up as of yet.

So, the President says that you can keep your health insurance, but the reality is that you may be forced into an exchange, which will likely cost more and offer fewer services.

One service that you will get, whether you want it or not, is free contraception.  That’s another reason why people hate this law.  It tramples on religious liberty.  If you happen to be the Catholic Church, you are now forced to offer insurance that completely contradicts your religious teaching.    That’s another nice thing about this law, and a good reason why Katherine Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, has been excommunicated by the Church.

Another good reason to dislike this law is that it will destroy the 40-hour work-week.  That’s what Jimmy Hoffa, the Teamster’s Union President, has said.  The reason?  Because the law actually discourages companies from having folks 40 hours a week, because the 40 hour work week triggers in all kinds of mandates from the government.   Don’t believe me?  Here is what Hoffa wrote to Leaders Reid and Pelois:  “the law creates an incentive for employers to keep employees’ work hours below 30 hours a week. Numerous employers have begun to cut workers’ hours to avoid this obligation, and many of them are doing so openly. The impact is two-fold: fewer hours means less pay while also losing our current health benefits.”

If you are young person who has decided not to continue to leach on your parents, you have another reason to hate Obamare.   You have to pay the Obamacare tax.   You will get fined if you don’t sign up for one of Obamacare’s exchanged.  That’s called the individual mandate, and it is mostly targeted on younger, healthier Americans that the health insurance companies especially value.  The government will tell you that you have to pay this “tax” (as defined by John Roberts), whether you want health insurance or not.

If you are a fiscal conservative, you are now panicking about the subsidies that are not about to kick in.    You get these subsidies if your income is 400% of poverty, or at about $89,000 for a family of four.  These subsidies help families buy health insurance on the health exchanges (which of course, aren’t set up yet), and will likely push up the cost of health insurance (any time the government subsidizes anything, the price goes up).

These subsidies will cost hundreds of billions of dollars.  We will have to borrow most of that money from China to pay for it.

That’s a legitimate reason to hate Obamacare.

Obamacare remains very unpopular with the Republican base.  40 percent of the American people want the law repealed.  Another 15 percent want the law delayed for another year.

Polls show that the Democrats still largely like the law, which is no surprise, since they were the ones who enacted it.  But they also largely still like the President, which may explain why the like the law.

I don’t like Obamacare.  I think it is bad for the country.  I think it is too expensive and hurts small businesses, and discourages hiring and tramples on religious liberty.

But I don’t hate this President and I don’t think that is a legitimate reason to hate this law.

Subscribe to the Feehery Theory Newsletter, exclusively on Substack.
Learn More