The Daily Wire reports that former Vice President Joe Biden was holding a campaign event in Iowa recently when a young man posed a question to him that should have come from a reporter if the media was doing its job.
“I just need this question. So, we’re going to take a trip back 2008 really quick. During the run-up to the passage of Obamacare, President Obama promised my father that if he likes his plan, he can keep his plan, and that his insurance will be cheaper. After passage, his plan was no longer allowed, and his insurance costs doubled. Since you supported the plan, were you lying to my dad? Or did you not understand the bill you supported?”
One can just imagine the thoughts that were going through Biden’s head when he heard that question. He gave a long, meandering answer that basically stated that he (or to be more exact President Obama) was lying when he said that Obamacare would reduce insurance costs and allow one to keep one’s doctor and they did not understand the bill. The answer gave the impression of all who were there that Biden still doesn’t understand what Obamacare did to healthcare in America or the harm that it did.
Biden, incidentally, has chosen a more moderate policy route where it comes to healthcare reform. He has rejected the Medicare For All proposal being advanced by Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in favor of what might be called Enhanced Obamacare.
The core of the Biden healthcare proposal is a plan to add a public option, something that could be called Medicare If You Want It. Bidencare would also increase tax credits to help people pay insurance premiums that the original Obamacare caused to increase in the first place.
The proposal has Biden pitting against Bernie Sanders, the socialist senator from Vermont who insists that all private healthcare should be abolished. Elizabeth Warren has also pushed Medicare for All but has spent less time than previously talking about it.
The Washington Examiner reports that Biden’s promise that (this time) if you like your plan you can keep your plan is – well –
“That’s malarkey. Private insurers must cover their costs to survive. The government, on the other hand, can run a money-losing operation. So, the public option will have the ability to underprice private insurers until they’re out of business.”
“The public option also envisions paying doctors and hospitals rates similar to Medicare’s, which are about 40% less than those paid by private insurance. Hospitals receive 87 cents for every dollar they spend treating Medicare beneficiaries. They count on higher payments from private insurers to compensate.
“If a public option’s artificially low premiums entice the privately insured away, then providers will have to raise rates for those remaining on private insurance. That would drive yet more privately insured to the public option. The cycle would continue until there were no private insurers left. One study of a public option plan found that 20% of state marketplaces would not have a private policy by 2028.”
The fair question arises, which someone ought to ask, does Biden know this and he’s lying about it. Or does he not understand the implications of his proposal. He has not been talking about the idea that he proposal will get to where Bernie and Warren want to go anyway, but in a roundabout way while trying to fool the voters.
Even so, part of the answer Biden gave to the young man in Iowa suggests that he knows what he’s doing,
“You should have the choice. If you want to keep it, you can keep it. And if in fact, the employer eliminates the plan, which he could, eliminates the plan, then you’d have the option to buy into a subsidized plan of Obamacare.”
In other words, Biden anticipates that under his plan, employers will start eliminating private insurance plans and dump people and the expense of healthcare on the new public option.,
Biden, while he remains persistently on top of the national polls, is not on top in Iowa or New Hampshire. True believers who want healthcare as a human right to be granted by the government are doubtlessly not supporting Biden. Others, more dubious of government-run healthcare, are doubtless like the young man at the campaign event and are of a mind of “fool me once, shame on you but fool me twice then shame on me.”