News / USA

Washington Week: Focus on Economy, Health Care

Washington Week: Focus on Economy, Health Carei
X
August 18, 2013
After a week-long vacation, U.S. President Barack Obama will focus on proposals to strengthen the still-recovering American economy. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the agenda includes implementation of his signature - and politically polarizing - initiative to reform the nation’s health care system.

Washington Week: Focus on Economy, Health Care

TEXT SIZE - +
Michael Bowman
— After a week-long vacation, U.S. President Barack Obama will focus on proposals to strengthen the still-recovering American economy.  The agenda includes implementation of his signature - and politically polarizing - initiative to reform the nation’s health care system.

The Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare as some call it, expands federal health care programs for the needy and encourages Americans of all income groups to purchase private health care insurance.

“If you do not have insurance, beginning on October 1st, private plans will actually compete for your business.  You can comparison shop in an online marketplace, just like you would for cell phone plans or plane tickets.  You may be eligible for new tax credits to help you afford the plan that’s right for you.  And if you are in the up to half of all Americans who have been sick or have a preexisting condition, this law means that beginning January 1st, insurance companies have to cover you," he said.

Health-care spending accounts for one-seventh of U.S. economic activity, and is projected to increase to one-fifth in coming years.  The cost has a direct bearing on America’s economic and fiscal wellbeing.  Enacted in 2010, the Affordable Care Act aims to control costs and expand access to health care.  The effort is a colossal failure, according to Republican lawmakers like Tim Griffin and Todd Young.

“Republicans will continue to do everything we can to protect all Americans from the president's top-down, one-size-fits-all, Washington-knows-best approach to health care that is driving up costs and hurting our economy," said Griffin.

Young added, “The sooner we can delay, dismantle, and repeal the president's health-care law, the sooner we can get people back to work and focus on expanding opportunity for everyone.”

The president accuses Republicans of putting partisanship ahead of Americans’ health-care needs. “A lot of Republicans seem to believe that if they can gum up the works and make this law fail, they will somehow be sticking it to me.  But they would just be sticking it to you.  Your health insurance is not something to play politics with.  Our economy is not something to play politics with," he said.

The success or failure of Obamacare could shape the president’s legacy long after he leaves office.

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid