Clinton at DNC 2012


Earlier today, former President Clinton spoke about Obamacare in Little Rock, reprising his role as “explainer-in-chief” to tell the American people how well Obamacare is working now, and will work when the exchanges launch in just 26 days.

But as Bill Clinton himself might say, that dog won’t hunt. Contrary to his claims, the law is not reducing costs, is causing people to lose their health coverage, and does not provide states with flexibility to implement the measure:

  • President Clinton claimed that the law would make health coverage more affordable. But the law hasn’t met then-Senator Obama’s 2008 campaign promise to reduce premiums by $2,500 per family—not by a country mile. Instead, premiums have gone up for the average employer plan—and the mandates included in Obamacare will raise costs and premiums beginning next year for many families.
  • President Clinton claimed that people who currently have coverage largely wouldn’t be affected by the law. But many Americans are losing coverage—because their plan doesn’t meet new government-imposed standards, or because their insurance company is dropping out of state markets. Many other Americans are being affected by the higher costs of Obamacare, as recent disclosures by firms like UPS and Delta indicate. And multiple unions agree that the law will “destroy the very health and well-being of our members along with millions of other hard-working Americans.”
  • President Clinton claimed that states would have more flexibility to implement the law. But even liberals have admitted that the supposed “flexibility” works only one way—states are allowed only to increase regulations and government involvement, not decrease them.
  • President Clinton claimed that if states don’t expand Medicaid, their tax dollars would go to other states to fund Obamacare’s coverage expansions. That’s just not accurate. If states don’t expand Medicaid, those tax dollars would stay in the federal Treasury—and what’s more, their state budgets would be better for it, because Obamacare will cost state budgets a bundle.

As to Clinton’s claim that those who oppose the law should try to fix it rather than repealing it, President Obama has committed to repeal the sequester—a provision the President himself signed into law. If President Obama believes the sequester is so harmful that it should be repealed—and the Administration is threatening to shut down the federal government if the sequester is not repealed—then why should conservatives abandon their belief that Obamacare is so harmful that it should be repealed?

The answer is simple. Liberals didn’t abandon their belief in a government-centric scheme for health care after President Clinton’s failed effort in the 1990s. Likewise, conservatives should not now abandon their belief—based on all the implementation failures to date—that Obamacare won’t deliver for the American people. It is so unworkable that it should be defunded and repealed.