Two years ago, Congress and President Obama rushed to pass the enormous 2,700-page health care law that most didn’t even have time to read. As time has passed, Heritage experts have analyzed the law and written extensively on the need for its repeal. The major components of Heritage’s Case Against Obamacare are summarized below.
Individual Mandate: Obamacare includes a requirement that everyone buy government-approved health insurance or face a penalty. This mandate is unconstitutional and violates personal liberty.
Employer Mandate: Obamacare includes a requirement that employers with 50 or more employees provide government-approved health insurance or face a fine. This mandate will hit workers through lower wages and fewer jobs, shareholders through lower profits, and consumers through higher prices.
Health Care Subsidies: Obamacare spends more than $400 billion in the first 10 years to subsidize health insurance offered through government-designed exchanges. The design of these subsidies reinforces the current inequities in the tax code and creates new ones that will discourage work and encourage employers to discontinue offering health insurance.
Medicaid Expansion: Obamacare requires states to expand an already broken Medicaid program that is squeezing state budgets and providing poor-quality care. More than half of the reduction in uninsured under Obamacare comes from expanding this failing welfare program.
Medicare Cuts: Obamacare cuts more than $500 billion from Medicare—not to shore up Medicare’s long-term solvency, but to pay for new spending in Medicaid and new health care subsidies. These payment cuts are unsustainable and will jeopardize seniors’ access to care and services.
Independent Payment Advisory Board: Obamacare puts in place an unelected board to reduce payments to Medicare providers. These major payment decisions will ultimately impact seniors’ ability to access care and services.
CLASS Act: Obamacare creates a new long-term care entitlement program for all Americans. The program is actuarially unsound and fiscally irresponsible. Its flawed design has led the Administration to put its implementation on hold.
New Taxes: Obamacare includes more than $500 billion in new taxes. Many of these new taxes will be passed on to consumers in higher prices, while others will lead to higher tax rates on work and investment and discourage economic growth.
Government Regulation and Benefit Mandates: Obamacare adds layers of regulation and benefit mandates on insurers and the insurance market and on employer health plans. Together, these provisions will increase costs, destabilize the market, and reduce consumer choice.