A year ago, the President addressed Congress and the American people to explain his vision for the health care plan that would later be signed into law. During that speech, President Obama said that “if you are among the hundreds of millions of Americans who already have health insurance through your job, or Medicare, or Medicaid, or the VA, nothing in this plan will require you or your employer to change the coverage or the doctor you have. Let me repeat this: Nothing in our plan requires you to change what you have.”
In an attempt to fulfill this promise, Obamacare includes a provision to allow existing plans to be “grandfathered” under the new law, so that Americans won’t have to change coverage they like to adhere to the new law’s numerous rules and regulations.
But when the grandfathered-plan regulations were released, it became obvious that this wouldn’t be the case. The stringent rules mean that most plans won’t be able to meet the requirements. According to the regulations themselves, by 2013, 51 percent of existing employer-sponsored plans will no longer qualify as “grandfathered.” That’s the mid-range estimate—the percentage of plans that lose grandfathered status could range from 39 percent to as high as 69 percent. A more recent study by Mercer points out that although “just 53% [of employers] believe that they are likely to retain grandfathered status for all their plans,” of that 53 percent, half believe they will no longer qualify as soon as 2014.
In response to this blatant disregard for the continually heard promise that “if you like it, you can keep it,” Senator Mike Enzi (R–WY) will introduce a resolution of disapproval intended to overturn the grandfather regulations. Says Senator Enzi, “The Administration’s grandfather rule is a job killing, wage cutting, game changer for small business. …This is not the kind of reform the people wanted.”
Enzi’s resolution is one way to prevent the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) from exercising its extensive new authority. Of course, the best way to stop HHS from destroying private health insurance is to repeal the law.