Op Ed

Johnson Won’t Tell Truth on Obamacare

Senator claims it’s hated, but ACA now has highest support, especially Trump voters.

By - Jan 15th, 2018 02:32 pm
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Ron Johnson

Ron Johnson

This weekend on Capital City Sunday Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson was allowed to make it appear that everyone hates the Affordable Care Act. The fact is that the law is now more popular than ever.

Public support for the law is now such that it has inched up to around its highest point in a half-dozen years. Johnson might also note this past enrollment season was successful even though the Trump administration made things difficult with a shortened enrollment time and reduced funds for outreach to those who could benefit from the coverage.

I found it interesting that Johnson would continue to rail against the law when statistics show Americans in states that Donald Trump carried in November 2016 account for more than 4 in 5 of those signed up for the Affordable Care Act. In fact, a breakdown of the new figures from the government found that 7.3 million of the 8.8 million consumers signed up for this year come from red states. Florida, Texas, North Carolina, and Georgia accounted for nearly 3.9 million customers, and they constituted the highest number of sign-ups.

These facts were not presented so the viewing audience was left to conclude that Johnson must be correct.

Johnson was proud that the recently passed tax bill got rid of the individual mandate, not seeming to appreciate the role the mandate had in working to make the fundamentals of the health law function. Johnson did not address who is supposed to pay if that person or family drops insurance and goes to the emergency room, or needs hospitalization.  

Instead Johnson stated someone contacted his office and said their family was charged 3X as much for health insurance under the ACA. At this point the moderator should have asked if Johnson had inquired of the constituent if the insurance they were paying for was a policy so lacking in basic elements that the company wouldn’t have paid for anything if their family actually had to use it. That, too, was a reason to enact ACA, and one that Johnson seemed not to be interested in.

It seems odd that Johnson seemingly has never heard from any constituents who used the preventative care portion of the health care plans to discover early colon cancer or been able to receive medications to treat their diabetes for the first time. It seems most remarkable that our senator has had no conversations with constituents who had a child with cancer that could not be denied insurance or who were not bumped up against previous lifetime caps — the very type of problems that ACA outlawed.

Never once did Johnson admit the merits of the law and how many people were served by it. Nor did he offer ideas how to work within the framework of the law to make the health care system stronger. But then again, Johnson was never asked any tough questions.

It would be nice if Johnson, instead of looking for ways to scorn the health law, were to join with Republicans such as Senator Lamar Alexander and a number of Democrats to stabilize the markets. Crowing about removing the mandate–which was a most destructive move–shows only the partisan side of Johnson.

What about the public policy needs, Senator?

Gregory Humphrey writes for the Caffeinated Politics blog

Categories: Health, Op-Ed, Politics

13 thoughts on “Op Ed: Johnson Won’t Tell Truth on Obamacare”

  1. Terry says:

    Ron Johnson is a charlatan and Trump enabler. He got his “badger bribe” in the tax deal so he can go now.

    DUMP JOHNSON!!!

  2. frank schneiger says:

    It is possible to divide the U.S. Senate into groups. One group consists of reasonably intelligent and decent politicians. Then there are those that are tools of some industry (oil, Wall Street, pharmaceuticals). This group includes people like Grassley, Barasso, Blunt, McConnell, Manchin, Schumer. Then there are the extremists trending toward a kind of fascism (Cotton, Cruz, Inhofe, Lee, Risch). Next, there is a group that could be defined as the non-entities, they are pretty much just there (Daines, Carper, Heitcamp, Nelson, Heller).

    Finally, there is a group that can be labeled the sub-non-entities. If you watch hearings on C-Span, this group pretty much consists of a single senator, Ron Johnson. He knows nothing, shows little evidence of trying to learn anything, despite being the chairman of an important committee, and is part of the semi- religious cult that believes – and constantly reminds the world – that being a “businessman” gives you some sort of universally applicable wisdom not available to others. Like much else today, it is an embarrassment to watch him in action.

  3. Dennis says:

    well said Frank

  4. WashCoRepub says:

    Every day that dawns, that I no longer have to listen to words spoken by Senator Feingold (sorry, I meant ‘Russ’), is by definition a better day for it.

  5. Terry says:

    Everday we have to listen to the gutteral moans, ignorance, lies and unintelligible drivel spewed by the charlatan Ron Johnson is a waking nightmare.

  6. will says:

    Johnson is just another GOP DOTARD. The dark ages are upon us.

  7. thomas sherman says:

    made the dirty dozen. to wit he was one of the worst 12 representatives on the environment

  8. Troll says:

    Obama’s promises. PROMISE 1: “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan.”…PROMISE 2..“I can make a firm pledge: under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 will see their taxes increase – not your income taxes, not your payroll taxes, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.” –President Obama, Sept. 12, 2008…PROMISE 3: “I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits — either now or in the future.” – President Obama, Sept. 9, 2009….PROMISE 4: “You should know that once we have fully implemented, you’re going to be able to buy insurance through a pool so that you can get the same good rates as a group that if you’re an employee at a big company you can get right now — which means your premiums will go down.” –President Obama, July 16, 2012.PROMISE 5: “Under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place.” —President Obama, Sept. 9, 2009

  9. Terry says:

    @Troll, Newsflash! It’s not 2009 anymore and Obama is not president. Nor is Jim Doyle governor of Wisconsin. You can’t blame them forever republicans…It’s time to move on. How is this germaine to the charlatan Johnson anyway? You were supposed to be “governing” all this time not continuing to whine and complain. It’s time for republicans to take “personal responsibility” for their gross ineptitude and egregious negligence. Where’s the jobs Walker? Why do the roads suck Walker? Why’d you gerrymander the state Walker? Why’d you Foxcon us Walker?
    Career politician Scott Walker and Greasy Ron Johnson can’t pass the buck forever y’all. They can’t blame Fightin’ Bob La Follette forever Wisconsin!

    Dump all republicans 2018!!

  10. simon says:

    @troll:
    PROMISE 1: “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan.”
    You have to renew ACA plan every year. There are many choices. You can always find one with more or less the same options as last year. It is not exactly the same plan but the options the essentially the same. As for the premium, you always pay almost the same percentage with respect to your income. The plan subsidy will pick up the rest. We don’t live in a perfect world. You are saying you rather to have no insurance than having a less than perfect plan?

  11. simon says:

    PROMISE 2..“I can make a firm pledge: under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 will see their taxes increase – not your income taxes, not your payroll taxes, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.” –President Obama, Sept. 12, 2008…
    You don’t like the fact he kept his promise?
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/obameter/promise/1/increase-the-capital-gains-and-dividends-taxes-for/

  12. simon says:

    PROMISE 3: “I will not sign a plan that adds one dime to our deficits — either now or in the future.” – President Obama, Sept. 9, 2009…
    Again You don’t like the fact he kept his promise?
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2014/oct/08/barack-obama/obama-health-care-driving-down-deficit/
    Simply don’t understand why you post without checking your facts first.

  13. A Bus Driver says:

    Troll & Trolls like him NEVER check facts because it requires critical thinking skills.

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