News / USA

    Amid Turmoil, US House Votes to Alter Health Care Law

    Amid Turmoil, House Votes to Alter Health Care Lawi
    X
    November 16, 2013 1:52 AM
    Polls show that President Barack Obama’s credibility has taken a hit because of promises he made concerning his landmark health care reform act. The president had assured Americans, “if you like your plan, you can keep it.” But now, millions of people are seeing their health care insurance plans cancelled because they do not meet the higher standards under the law. Some of the president’s Democratic allies in Congress are distancing themselves from him. As VOA’s Congressional Correspondent Cindy Saine reports, Republicans in Congress are seeking to take advantage of the turmoil.
    Amid Turmoil, House Votes to Alter Health Care Law
    Cindy Saine
    Polls show that President Barack Obama’s credibility has taken a hit because of promises he made concerning his landmark health care reform act. The president had assured Americans, “if you like your plan, you can keep it.” But now, millions of people are seeing their health care insurance plans cancelled because they do not meet the higher standards under the law. Some of the president’s Democratic allies in Congress are distancing themselves from him, and Republicans in Congress are seeking to take advantage of the turmoil.

    In a raucous session, the Republican-controlled House passed a bill to extend certain insurance plans.

    Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn said, “We have heard from Americans from coast to coast that they do not want the president’s health care law.”

    Some Democrats said the House bill was just the latest of many Republican attempts to undermine the president and his health care law. Democratic Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro said, “This is a cynical, transparently political bill, oppose it.”

    But 39 Democrats voted with Republicans to change the law.

    On Thursday, Obama admitted “Obamacare” is in trouble. "'We did fumble the ball on it. And what I'm going to do is make sure that we get it fixed.''

    The president announced his decision to extend some insurance plans for one year.

    Andrew Leonard is one of those who lost his health insurance. He said a new plan would cost him three times as much, and would cover the cost of medical care for children, something he does not need. “I don’t have any kids, and when I do have kids, I would probably get their own insurance plan or change it at that point. Why do I have to change it now?”

    Technical glitches with the government’s health care website have caused headaches for millions of Americans. Elayne Burke said she spent hours trying to sign up for a plan on the website. She finally succeeded, but it was not what she hoped for. She said she wants to avoid a repeat of last year when she had big medical bills after almost losing a finger. “...if I had the finger happen again, I would still not be in great financial shape paying for that. So it’s really not universal health coverage.”

    The president's credibility has suffered serious damage, according to analyst Stu Rothenberg. He said that will have an impact on Democratic candidates in next year's mid-term elections.

    “Every Democrat from a swing state or a Republican district or state is looking to say 'it’s not my fault, I was misled, the President lied to me, here’s a fix for healthcare that we need to adopt,' " said Rothenberg.

    If the website is fixed, however, and millions of Americans sign up for health plans, Rothenberg said public opinion could shift again.

    You May Like

    Video Rubio Looks to Surge in New Hampshire

    Republican presidential candidate has moved into second place in several recent surveys and appears to be gaining ground on longtime frontrunner Donald Trump

    UN Calls for Global Ban on Female Genital Mutilation

    Recent UNICEF report finds at least 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone female genital mutilation in 30 countries

    UN Pilots New Peace Approach in CAR

    Approach launched in northern town of Kaga Bandoro, where former combatants of mainly Muslim Seleka armed group and Christian and animist anti-Balaka movement are being paid to do community work

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    November 16, 2013 2:24 PM
    Please thread softly with Obama, after all it was not all his fault. In the first place he was not prepared to take up the presidency thing, but one of you out there persuaded him. Again he is a young man, though he's greying now; next time find those who understand what it takes to be there and not those who are aspiring with audacity of hope. Yeah it paid off for him, but I don't know if its paying off for the country. Check it out and say for yourselves whether you're still standing, unless you have completely failed.

    by: Marina Farina from: USA
    November 15, 2013 11:15 PM
    We’ve got a serious problem on our hands and it’s one that many Obamacare apologists refuse to admit.




    The Patient Affordable Care Act is an unprecedented catastrophe in the making.

    While millions of Americans are losing their health care coverage within weeks, the health care exchanges advocated by Obamacare supporters are in shambles. So far, a little over 100,000 people have signed up. Moreover, what’s important to understand is that none of these people have yet paid a premium, so in essence, those are preliminary numbers. When the monthly bill comes due, we’ll see how many people actually have the money to pay the exorbitant new rates.

    The key problem is one of basic arithmetic.

    Remember, what this legislation does is it robs from Paul to pay Peter. This means that the whole system is essentially a pyramid scheme that depends on one group of people paying the premium for those who are the beneficiaries of this “free” and “affordable” insurance.

    As we know all too well, the new rates for those who have to pay into the system are double or triple their previous insurance premiums – and those newly minted rates actually stand to double again because there is not enough money in the system to provide coverage for everyone.

    We can sum this up in two words: Unmitigated Disaster.

    And just so we’re clear, we’re not talking about these issues rearing their head a decade or so down the road.

    We’re talking about mere months before the whole thing falls apart.

    The scary thing? When it crumbles, the broader economy goes with it.


    The reality? This number sucks irrespective of so-called “technological” problems. The system needs 100 times that number to be “stable.”

    It won’t be.

    by: Lady Creamburp from: San Diego
    November 15, 2013 11:12 PM

    If they manage to get ten times this number in the next six weeks (the cut-off), which is looking to be a fantasy-land impossibility, the entire system will detonate within the first year and provided they force it to “survive” premiums will see huge increases, likely double or more, a year from now.

    Let me remind everyone that nobody in the lower and middle class has the money to pay not only for the so-called “insurance” under these plans which are running roughly twice what everyone is spending now but in addition if you use the so-called “insurance” the deductibles are frequently double to ten times what you had before.

    There’s no fix for this folks.

    The stock market is ignoring a passed law that will cause these impacts starting January 1st and it’s utterly amusing to watch the S&P up 10 and the Naz skyrocketing today (not to mention the retailers) when you look at what this is going to do to people’s budgets coming into the new year with the holidays coming up.

    The numbers are even worse than I had expected they might be…. especially on the federal exchange side.



    Americans have lost trillions of dollars in wealth in since the crash of 2008. We’ve seen jobs wiped out to such an extent that nearly one in four Americans can’t find a job. Over 100 million people are living in poverty or right on the edge.

    And now, on top of all that, those who are fortunate enough to have jobs just got hammered with a doubling and trebling of their insurance rates, which for many American families have risen as high as an entire month’s mortgage payment.

    If you think this isn’t happening, you’re living in a dream world. Your politics are irrelevant to the outcome. What your savior in the White House says makes absolutely no difference. If you want to close your eyes and pretend like it’s not happening, then reality will hit you square in the face at a high rate of speed in the very near future.

    The collapse is dead ahead. It cannot be stopped.

    Expect 2014 to be a rough year for America.

    by: BGB from: San Diego
    November 15, 2013 10:04 PM
    We had to go through a government shutdown for this! I had my doubts about Senator Cruz, but now he looks like a hero that was that we should have paid closer attention to.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.