---- — To the editor:
The lengths to which the Republican Party is willing to go to block implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) -- like shutting down the government and undermining the economy -- is totally out of proportion to the provisions in the new health care law, many of which originated with Republicans. For 60 years honest efforts have been made to overcome the vast problems inherent in America’s health-care system. The current actions of the Republican House are not honest: They are taken for the sole purpose of denying President Obama and the Democrats the credit they deserve for passing legislation that helps millions of Americans.
Here are just a few of the ways the ACA helps all citizens: It prevents insurance companies from discriminating based on pre-existing conditions; allows children up to 26 to stay on their parents’ health insurance policies, saving families large amounts of money; it provides free preventive care; it mandates that insurance companies use 80-85 percent of every premium dollar on actual health care costs, not bloated administrative structures. Insurance companies that cannot stay within the 80-85 percent must rebate the excess to their customers. It is estimated insurers will rebate $1.1 billion this year to premium paying customers because of the ACA!
More than half of all U.S. bankruptcies are related to health emergencies, and almost half of these bankruptcies occur in families that pay premiums and have health insurance coverage -- coverage which is yanked when it is needed, that is when people are struck down with serious illness! This changes under the ACA: It prevents insurance companies from cutting off coverage when an insured party gets sick and it ends lifetime and yearly dollar limits on coverage of essential health benefits.
These are all good things and this is what the Republican House is fighting to keep the American people from having. Their overwrought efforts to attack President Obama are outrageous and a disservice to their constituents.
The United States can no longer afford a Republican-dominated House of Representatives. They are not representing the people!