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Joe Biden: We Must Protect And Build On Obamacare


Joe Biden released the healthcare plan he would put into place if elected president and, like much else in his campaign, it revolves around the continued pursuit of the Obama administration’s goals.

“The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was a historic achievement,” Biden’s campaign tweeted. “20 million Americans gained coverage. Over 100 million with pre-existing conditions finally got protection. We can’t tear it down.”

Biden’s proposed plan is to protect and build on Obamacare.

In his video, Biden provides a relatively moderate outlook on healthcare, saying he cannot believe that Democrats are running on a “Medicare for All” plan as that would get rid of Obamacare.

“I’m surprised that so many Democrats are running on getting rid of the Affordable Care Act,” Biden said.

In the video, Biden showcases the moment in the first round of the Democratic debates when Kamala Harris and Bernie Sanders raised their hands saying they would eliminate private health insurance if elected president.

“Obamacare is failing,” said Grace-Marie Turner, founder and president of the Galen Institute, a research organization that promotes free-market ideas for health reform. “The fact that so few Democrats are standing up and cheering for it shows it simply didn’t work.”

A simple run-down of Biden’s plan:

    1. Giving American’s a public health insurance option, like Medicare
      Obamacare was designed to give American’s a government-issued healthcare “option.” However, Obamacare was essentially forced down the throats of Americans via mandatory enrollment fees, which fined people for not having healthcare, making enrollment less of an “option” than it was originally spelled out to be. While Biden’s plan promises that Americans will be able to keep their existing private health insurance if they please, Obama made that same claim in 2009. However, the only way to reduce premium costs under the ACA was to reduce the number of doctors in an insurer’s network. This resulted in people losing their doctors.
    2. Federal government overhaul to expand Medicare, ignoring states’ rights
      On Biden’s campaign website, he proposes “expanding coverage to low-income Americans,” which sounds like the moral way to justify healthcare expansion. However, that title is completely misleading to what Biden’s actual proposal is interested in doing—turning healthcare into a federal government overhaul and ignoring states’ rights. Conservative-leaning states such as Texas, Tennessee, and Mississippi are among the 14 states that have not adopted Medicaid expansion. Under the Biden Plan, the federal government would bypass a state’s right to choose whether or not to adopt healthcare expansion. This healthcare proposal is just another example of how the Democratic nominees are working tirelessly to undermine states’ rights and American citizens’ ability to chose.
    3. Lack of competition is driving up prices, so let’s eliminate all competition
      The Biden plan says that healthcare in its current form is too expensive and hard to navigate. Yet, the current system we live under is the system Biden is a proponent of protecting and expanding. Biden’s plan mentions that a lack of competition, especially in the market of prescription drugs, is driving up prices. Instead of following basic economic principles, which would suggest that in order to drive down costs, open the free market to allow more competition and allow the lowest prices to prevail (also known as capitalism) Biden has suggested that the federal government and expansion of the ACA will magically get rid of the high expenses of healthcare.”There is no way that private plans can compete with a public plan that has unlimited access to taxpayers’ dollars,” Turner said.
    4. Biden’s plan will repeal the existing law explicitly barring Medicare from negotiating lower prices with drug corporations
      This is also known as reforming Obamacare. So while Biden is running on a platform of “protecting and building on Obamacare,” there are aspects of Obamacare that are failing, with Biden refusing to admit it. Instead, Biden is covering up these failures with “proposals” which are really just reforms to the existing government healthcare plan.”The Congressional Budget Office has concluded that government would not be able to do as good a job as private companies,” said Turner. “While this sounds good as a slogan, this is not a good way to actually lower drug prices.”
    5. Allowing consumers to buy prescription drugs from other countries
      Also known as drug importation. “It’s been an idea that politicians have been proposing for several decades,” Turner says. She adds that there is no way to regulate the supply of imported drugs and this policy would bypass the FDA. By ignoring FDA standards, this leaves American citizen’s susceptible to drugs that are dangerous to their health. This policy opens up the market so anybody can send drugs into America.
    6. Repealing the Hyde Amendment and codifying Roe v. Wade
      Biden wants to repeal the Hyde Amendment, which bars taxpayers from paying directly for abortions. This would give more federal funding to Planned Parenthood. Not to mention, Biden’s plan intends to codify Roe v. Wade into law.

“A Medicare-for-All proposal goes too far,” said Turner. “[Biden] does not believe that Americans should be forced to lose their healthcare, but the public option would quickly lead to that same result. It’s a shorter path to the same place.”