Former Massachusetts Senator and NH Senate hopeful Scott Brown called Obamacare a “monstrosity” while visiting the home of NH State Representative Herb Richardson. Bashing Obamacare is pretty standard Boilerplate GOP campaign strategy, but poor Scott Brown made his argument in the wrong home. Richardson and his wife had to correct Scott Brown, because under the new health care exchanges made available because of Obamacare the Republican couple is paying a staggering 88 percent less for health insurance costs.
Richardson’s wife exclaimed “thank God for Obamacare” as she and her husband described how Herb had been injured on the job and forced to live off of workman’s compensation. The couple had to pay over half of their income, 1100 dollars a month, out of pocket to maintain their health insurance under the old federal COBRA law. Obamacare enabled them to qualify for a healthcare subsidy which lowered their costs almost a thousand dollars a month to an affordable 136 dollars a month instead. The Richardsons have reason to be grateful for the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
Scott Brown may have learned a lesson for Republicans campaigning against Obamacare. As long as it remained an abstraction, it made a convenient bogeyman to attack on the stump. However, now that Obamacare is actually working for some people, the GOP will have to tread carefully. For some people it has brought affordable health care. Despite all the phony horror stories, for Republican families like the Richardsons, the real story is that Obamacare will save them over 10,000 dollars annually in health care costs. For other people with low incomes or with pre-existing conditions, the Affordable Care Act may give them health care coverage for the first time.
While Obamacare is by no means a perfect solution to the nation’s health care crisis, it is an improvement to America’s health care system that provides real and tangible benefits to the American people. The program even helps Republicans. Perhaps eventually Scott Brown and the other federal GOP candidates will learn to accept that Obamacare is a lifesaver and not a monstrosity, at least out here in the real world where the American people have to live.