Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Monday, October 24, 2016


The New York Times reported Wednesday that a large majority of people who signed up for Obamacare have paid their premiums on time. While these numbers vary based on the state and the type of plan, The Times says around 80 percent of those who signed up are paying, which is required for insurance coverage to start.

And, just like that, another Republican talking point about the Affordable Care Act has been debunked.

This idea that Obamacare beneficiaries would not pay their premiums, effectively dooming the young law, is in good company. A number of Republican talking points about Obamacare have bitten the dust recently. From the completely outlandish — death panels, government-funded abortions, etc. — to the notion that the Obama administration would never hit its enrollment target, they’ve ranged in viability, but have all nonetheless evaporated.

Here’s a look back at five anti-Obamacare talking points that have inevitably been disproved.

AFP Photo/Saul Loeb

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2014 The National Memo
  • Sand_Cat

    There is no truth in the GOP.

    • disqus_ivSI3ByGmh

      Sand, they only recognize their own spoutings as “truth”. If it can be verified by fact checking, they don’t want anything to do with it.

  • Independent1

    In addition to these 5 talking points, some conservatives have been insisting that Obamacare was going to make the delivery of healthcare even worse and result in more Americans dying because Obamacare was going to overburdened our healthcare delivery system.

    Well here is essentially the full article from the DailyKos that also refutes this notion:

    HHS: Hospitals are safer places to be with Obamacare

    The Affordable Care Act prevented 15,000 hospital-related deaths in 2012, the Department of Health and Human Services reports. It’s also saved $4.1 billion in costs, and prevented 560,000 hospital-related injuries in 2011 and 2012. That means more than half a million fewer falls, bad drug reactions, or hospital-based infections.

    The law has also significantly reduced hospital readmissions. Between 2007-11, the 30-day hospital readmission rate held at 19 percent, and has dropped to 17.5 percent last year. The bottom line there is 150,000 fewer Medicare patients being readmitted in the last two years, and that’s where much of the savings come in. The administration attributes these big improvements to public-private partnerships launched by the new law.

    “We applaud the nationwide network of hospital systems and providers that are working together to save lives and reduce costs,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “We are seeing a simultaneous reduction in hospital re-admissions and injuries, giving patients confidence that they are receiving the best possible care and lowering their risk of having to be readmitted to the hospital after they get the care they need.”There’s an awful lot of really good news for Obamacare these days, from big savings to 90 percent of people paying their first insurance premiums to less people dying or being hurt in hospitals. And that’s a lot of bad news for Republicans.

  • Independent1

    Some conservative trolls on the NM (too many to mention names), even have claimed that Obamacare was going to destroy healthcare for over 100 million Americans – WELL, that certainly hasn’t happened.

    And here are some benefits outlined in a CNN article that Obamacare has provided for virtually every American, in some cases even if they don’t have insurance:

    317 million Americans will benefit from:

    — That’s how many Americans — i.e., all of us — potentially benefit from the requirement that insurance companies provide flu shots, HIV screenings, prostate exams, mammograms and FDA-approved contraception for free, without a co-pay.

    — Plus, we all benefit from new requirements that insurance companies must spend at least 80% of our premium dollars on our health care as opposed to marketing or administration.

    — We all benefit from the new requirement that insurance companies publicly justify their actions if they want to raise premiums by 10% or more.

    — We all benefit from knowing that our insurance can now never be capped or canceled at the whim of insurance companies.

    As high quality care is maintained while costs may go down because of improved coverage and access, we all benefit from a more affordable and effective health care system.

    And even more Americans will benefit from Obamacare as listed below:

    50 to 129 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many people will benefit from the Obamacare provision that eliminates all bars for coverage based on pre-existing conditions. Studies say that anywhere from 19% to 50% of non-elderly Americans have health conditions that could qualify as pre-existing conditions.

    49.4 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many current Medicare enrollees can feel secure knowing that, under Obamacare, existing Medicare benefits can neither be reduced nor taken away.

    3.1 million plus Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many young adults can get coverage because of the provision in Obamacare that allows them to stay on their parents’ insurance plans until age 26.

    105 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many Americans no longer have lifetime expense caps, whether it’s because they have chronic illnesses or because their insurance company set restrictive policies.

    6.1 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many Americans with Medicare Part D no longer have to go through the “doughnut hole” coverage gap. This means seniors can save more than $5.7 billion on prescription drugs.

    3.2 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s the number of small businesses estimated to be eligible for tax credits for providing health insurance to their 19.3 million employees nationwide, credits worth $15.4 billion in 2011 alone.

    4.4 million Americans will benefit from:

    That’s how many low-income adults will now have access to health insurance thanks to states implementing the expansion of Medicaid under Obamacare; an additional 5.8 million poor adults would be included in this count if 25 mostly Republican-led states weren’t refusing Medicaid expansion.

  • Independent1

    I apologize if I’m overwhelming everyone on the blog, but it’s important that everyone understand, including the imbecilic right-wing trolls, that the trolls many contentions and rantings on Obamacare have been proven to be pure unadulterated nonsense.

    For those trolls who have kept insisting that Obamacare was going to bankrupt the nation, here were some of the CBO’s latest projections as of April 15, 2014 (I’m not sure I buy into the CBO’s projection that there will be 30 million uninsureds from 2017 through 2024. I doubt seriously the uninsured population will remain that high) :

    CBO: Obamacare will have lower premiums, insure more, and cost government less than projected

    That whole “Obamacare is doomed to fail” line from Republicans is getting harder and harder to defend by the day. A new report from the Congressional Budget Office makes their protestations sound even more ridiculous. The top line finding:

    Relative to their previous projections made in February 2014, CBO and JCT now estimate that the ACA’s coverage provisions will result in lower net costs to the federal government: The agencies currently project a net cost of $36 billion for 2014, $5 billion less than the previous projection for the year; and $1,383 billion for the 2015–2024 period, $104 billion less than the previous projections.

    The other good news:

    Health insurance premiums are lower than CBO originally projected, saving the government $190 billion;

    ” at least 12 million more nonelderly people will have health insurance in 2014 than would have had it in the absence of the ACA;”

    The number of uninsured will fall to 30 million by 2017 and will remain there through 2024, absent other reforms;

    The projection made originally in 2012 that the ACA would reduce the deficit is still valid, and deficit reduction is greater than anticipated two years ago.

    Additionally, they project that premiums will rise only “slightly” in 2015, by about $100 for the mid-level plans that have proven to be the most popular in the exchanges. They also say that those premium hikes will be caused more by increasing health care costs than the having more and sicker people—those with pre-existing conditions—now in the risk pool.

    • Irishgrammy

      You would think Independent1, that those foolish Tea Baggers along with “Americans for Prosperity” ditto heads, that have been drinking the KoolAid from the Republicans and Koch boys, and their “Hair on Fire” dooms day representation of all the “horrible” things that would happen when the ACA took effect, that IN FACT has not happened and was NEVER going to happen, would be feeling a little “used and abused” by the truth now evident! What their almighty poo-bahs swore to them about all the ugly things that were going to happen to their lives and to health care is now provably lies!!! Now I’ll bet those same fools are enjoying their own Obamacare/ACA provided PRIVATE Health Insurance policies that they now know is NOT “government controlled or run” insurance at all, but in reality, private commercial insurance policies administered by private insurance companies, along with all the other benefits put into law, first and foremost, no longer being denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, …….SURPRISE, SURPRISE!!!!
      How many times do the Republicans get a “pass” for lying their butts off in order to win some sick twisted political game in order to prevent a long fought for policy that will save LIVES and improve so many peoples prospects of longer healthier lives????

  • FT66

    Those who left alone republicans to bite the dust on all talks about Obamacare, should leave them once again to bite another dust on investigating more on Benghazi . The issue is not new. Every citizen is aware of it. They went to the playground alone, played among themselves of repeal and start afresh ACA. Very few were interested to watch their match. In the end they decided to take their ball and went home. This method should be applied the same to the Benghazi issue. I do not see the sounding reason why Dems should join them and play together.

  • disqus_ivSI3ByGmh

    There is one area that has sorta come true. Premiums have risen. Of course, saying Insurance Premiums are going to rise year after year is like saying some politician is going to claim something that isn’t true. Ain’t no betting house that will give you better than 1:1 odds on it. Insurance Premiums have risen every year since 1976 when I first had to get my own coverage. I paid less in a year back then, than I do in a 2-week pay period now. The only other category that has grown as fast as health care insurance premiums is the cost of a college education. Both have far exceeded the rate of inflation of other costs.
    There is one good idea that Republicans have expressed that should be acted upon (this falls under the “even a blind pig can find an acorn” rule) – tort reform regarding insurance liability. This has probably contributed more to the increase in liability insurance payments required by the doctors, passed on to us consumers than many other “office related” costs.

    • Allan Richardson

      Tort “reform” that simply protects BAD providers from what they DESERVE to pay is unfair to people who HAVE been injured by them. But the crux of the matter is that there are bad medical outcomes even when everything is done perfectly in accordance with current medical knowledge. Sometimes those bad outcomes result in increasing that knowledge, but a patient and/or family is still suffering. Relieving the suffering, follow-up care, and rehab assistance after even a totally INNOCENT bad outcome (just plain bad luck) is expensive, and the patient or caregivers, in the past, no longer had coverage for the rehab (pre-existing condition!), and therefore no way to get relief, EXCEPT to take the provider(s) to court and hope for a jury verdict in their favor, even if they understood that to be unfair to the provider, because there was NO OTHER WAY to avoid destitution — or further progress of the mistake-caused disease, or death, due to the lack of insurance coverage.

      The “reform” we need is to recognize that there is a continuum of liability ranging from none at all to totally criminal negligence (e.g. a doctor taking his own “anesthetic” before giving you yours), and simple human fairness demands that the PATIENT OR SURVIVORS be compensated, even if there is nobody who deserves to pay to make that possible. This sounds like a job for … INSURANCE! We need to emulate the “no fault” concept in auto insurance, namely that sometimes EVERYBODY is a victim, and pay claims first, THEN investigate. Although Obamacare will help to some extent, since people will still have insurance, the real help would be an impartial, judicially-minded (rather than profit minded) single payer plan.

      So the doctor made a mistake and your legs are paralyzed? While waiting to FIND OUT if he was liable, or if it was just bad luck (you had a condition rarely seen that rendered the perfectly reasonable treatment for some other symptom the very worst treatment option for you), you can get the rehab, orthotics, etc. paid for. Then the single payer agency (call it Medicare for convenience) looks at that doctor’s records (being the single payer, they already have those records) to see if you are the only one, one in a dozen over his entire career, or a typical patient of his. Behind the scenes and unknown to you, unless you are called as a witness, they would sue the bad doctors, perhaps for their licenses as well as money, provide additional training for those who are just behind the times, correct procedures in hospitals, or exonerate the perfectly good doctors who just had bad luck with you as a patient.

      If doctors were only sued when someone thought they DESERVED to pay up, rather than whenever some needs to BE PAID in order to survive financially, whether they deserve it or not, then the rates for malpractice insurance would go down quickly … especially with the BAD ones losing their licenses and dropping out of the risk pool!

  • jointerjohn

    Don’t think for one minute that there will come a time that the republicans will finally give up harping on this. They are still spooking their mental midget followers with tales of communist boogeymen and insisting that trickle-down economics works. Considering that many of their followers and a frightening portion of their congressional delegation believes that the earth is only six thousand years old and humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time, there is no reason to hope that evidence will ever affect their positions.

    • tigerakabj

      Yep. But you know I personally just don’t give a pluck about them screaming. I would say, “Let them scream! I got s**t to say too!” The reason why for 50 years til Reagan we expanded Social Security, Medicare, and other social programs and opportunity was b/c Democrats shouted down the likes of the screamers.

      Harry Truman served one term, but he sure as heck ate the GOP’s lunch when it came to over-the-top rhetoric about the people’s needs. One of his most famous sayings, “I don’t give them heck. I just tell the truth and they think it’s heck.” He even produced a list of the things the GOP stands for. Read ’em and weep for joy:

      “Republicans approve of the American farmer, but they are willing to help him go broke. They stand four-square for the American home–but not for housing. They are strong for labor–but they are stronger for restricting labor’s rights. They favor minimum wage–the smaller the minimum wage the better. They endorse educational opportunity for all–but they won’t spend money for teachers or for schools. They think modern medical care and hospitals are fine–for people who can afford them. They consider electrical power a great blessing–but only when the private power companies get their rake-off. They think American standard of living is a fine thing–so long as it doesn’t spread to all the people. And they admire the Government of the United States so much that they would like to buy it.”

      “The Republicans … will try to make people believe that everything the Government has done for the country is socialism. They will go to the people and say: “Did you see that social security check you received the other day—you thought that was good for you, didn’t you? That’s just too bad! That’s nothing in the world but socialism. Did you see that new flood control dam the Government is building over there for the protection of your property? Sorry—that’s awful socialism! That new hospital that they are building is socialism. Price supports, more socialism for the farmers! Minimum wage laws? Socialism for labor! Socialism is bad for you, my friend. Everybody knows that. And here you are, with your new car, and your home, and better opportunities for the kids, and a television set—you are just surrounded by socialism! Now the Republicans say, ‘That’s a terrible thing, my friend, and the only way out of this sinkhole of socialism is to vote for the Republican ticket.’”

      Democrats could and should take about 50 chapters from their New Deal-predecessors and just steamroll the GOP with regards to the type of policies and philosophy of government that the GOP opposes.

  • ExRadioGuy15

    Actually, the “death panels” talking point is still alive, but for a different reason…I’ve been saying and writing since last year that the death panels talking point has become a “self-fulfilling prophecy”, as the Red states that refuse the fully-funded (for the first three years; 90% after that) Medicaid expansion are going to kill people. It took until a couple of months ago before the media had this sad fact dawn on them.
    Ya know, I find that this happens to me quite a bit: I figure something out, write about it on social media (especially Facebook and Twitter) and, days, weeks, months or years later, our so-called “Liberal” media, most of which are owned and operated by GOP sympathizers who order their charges to spew the ridiculous “false equivalency” argument, finally have the lightbulb go off in their heads.
    Somehow, we need to reduce the size of this “learning curve”. So, allow me to help you out….
    The Republican Party are Fascists, as they adhere to all 14 of the defining characteristics of Fascism….
    The Libertarian wing of the GOP, like the Libertarian Party itself, are Fascism-suborning, as a Libertarian form of government would lead to a Fascist regime…
    The Republicans have 10 Tenets: bigotry, hypocrisy, elitism, Fascism, greed, corruption, incompetence, arrogance, insanity and unintentional comedy….
    The Republicans have the following governing philosophy: “screw the poor, middle class, elderly, disabled, Veterans, women, children and minorities, the wealthy and big corporations need more money and power!”….
    While almost every GOP argument is rooted in one of the two-dozen or so logical fallacies, the two philosophies the GOP and Libertarians use most and SHOULD be logical fallacies are a psychiatric ploy known as “projection” (which is the worst form of hypocrisy) and false equivalence. The projection and false equivalence are employed by the GOP and Libertarians for two reasons: first, employing those things makes the GOP and Libertarians feel better about the sad fact that their parties are corrupt (both), Fascist (GOP) and Fascism-suborning (Libertarians). Second, they use those to justify continuing to vote Republican, using the stupid argument that, “since both parties are the same, I might as well keep voting for the GOP”.
    It took the so-called “Liberal media” more than two years to finally admit something that I had figured out in 2010: the most dangerous and powerful enemy of the United States of America is the Republican Party. So long as the GOP has control of ANYTHING, all of what I wrote above is in force. This Non-Affiliated voter, who hasn’t belonged to a political party since 1990, strongly recommends that, if you truly wish to rid this country of Fascist and corrupt bastards, VOTE OUT THE GOP! It’s that simple…

  • Irishgrammy

    For more than 25 years my husband and I have had employer provided Health Ins. at first we paid a small premium for me as a dependent, over the years that increased, because you know… the insurance company knows as you age things “happen”…….every year when my husband got a raise, you could bet the farm the health insurance costs increase which came in December would eat up that raise almost completely, so we were living what has been discussed again and again, stagnant income ……By the time my husband reached 65 we were paying out of pocket $1354.00 a month with the employer contribution of $500.00 per mo. a grand total of $1854.00 X 12=$22,248.00 a YEAR for 2 people, TWO!! And we were never sick……The minute he turned 65 we were notified by the Insurance company there was going to be an increase of $400.00 per mo. and when open enrollment came in Dec. that it would increase another $450. per month, i.e., get your butt on Medicare because we don’t want you anymore……ANYONE who says our health care system wasn’t broken is not living in reality and this was about 2 years before the ACA was passed. Since we have both been on Medicare, we have had the best health ins. we have ever had, we do have the best Supplemental plan available which is about $360.00 a month for both of us, in addition to the cost of Part B and the prescription part D, but this cost in no way compares to what private insurance was costing and obscenely increasing annually. When I hear Paul Ryan spouting his horrible “privatizing” ideas for Medicare, and the same for Social Security, I hear a man who has absolutely NO clue to what it means to age in this country and the vital programs that keep the elderly out of abject poverty. As long as I can remember the Republicans have been threatening, relentlessly, to end these two invaluable programs…….so someone explain to me WHY the numbers of elderly who supposedly vote Republican are so high……absolutely inexplicable!!!!! The ACA has strengthened Medicare, lowered the price of MY prescriptions and made the lives of my children and grandchildren substantially more affordable and solvent with regard to health insurance and care…..If I hear Ted Cruz say one more time “I will repeal every word of Obamacare”, I will spit nails, that goes for all the other code words the far right spew, “Benghazi”, “IRS”, phony scandal after phony scandal, etc… ……….The Republican Party has become a party of extreme and constant negativity, an ad nauseam attack machine of lies, conspiracies, spreading fear and division, a political party totally bankrupt of ANY ideas to move the country FORWARD and completely void of any moral or truthful credibility or leadership. Now if you would like to go back to 1814, re-institute slavery, keep women barefoot and pregers tied to the stove, and NOT voting, make sure the poor stay poor for a working slave base of labor making a wage of “whatever the market will determine” per Republicans expressing their hate of the minimum wage, and the old and ill die off quickly, “reducing the excess population”, while being represented by a party who have nothing but contempt for all those of color, ethnicity, or religions they don’t approve of, and if one wants to let only “white men”, preferably RICH white men run the world and corporations are wonderful “PEOPLE” in your view (Justice John Roberts loves those “people”), ………well, hey you have your party, the GOPTP!

  • Don’t forget the “government takeover” talking point. That’s dead too.

    • Krackhead Club Manager

      You’re trying to get away because you don’t want to admit that Eugene Krack is a far better and entertaining blogger/writer than you could ever be. Otherwise, you would come check him out. Oh well, don’t be jealous that he already has so many followers while you’d like to believe that people actually read your sh*t. Haha.

  • M.j. Zuzich

    Thanks to this article, it’s now become clear why it is that Charles Krauthammer always looks as though he’s just swallowed a spoonful of castor oil. To be so wrong so many times on so many issues on national TV would explain what that facial expression that he constantly displays is all about. -And to think that I was almost believing that the poor man was suffering from chronic intestinal distress. Who knew?

  • NC77

    The government does fund abortions through ObamaCare. Have your head in the sand?

  • NC77

    If Obama keeps suspending the tax penalties people must pay this year and for last year, expect it to go broke soon. Oh wait, other’s taxes will go up to subsidize this “deficit neutral” canard. Or the government will just borrow more and drive up the national debt.