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11/9/2013 6:51:00 PM
Frankly Speaking
By Rep. Frank Lucas

On October 1, the Administration launched the Affordable Care Act enrollment web site. "Page not found," "system down for maintenance," "account cannot be created this time," are the messages Americans have experienced while trying to sign-up. The rollout has been a systematic failure full of error messages, coding problems, and glitches. But, while the Administration's failure to initiate an enrollment site that works efficiently is extremely frustrating and unwarranted, the problems with Obamacare go far beyond web site glitches.

Since the Affordable Care Act became law in 2010, the president has promised over and over again that Americans who liked their current health care plan would be able to keep it. Now that the roll-out has occurred, this doesn't seem to be the case. It has been reported that millions of Americans have already received cancellation notices on their current health care plans, and this number will only go up as the fl awed law continues to be implemented. It is a shame that American families and individuals are unable to keep a plan that works for them.

Additionally, those fortunate enough to keep their current coverage are facing higher premiums under Obamacare, and others may see doubling or tripling deductibles. To make matters worse, Americans shifting their current health plan to Obamacare may not be provided with the same coverage they previously had. This means they will experience costly additional co-pays and lose the ability to see their longtime family doctors.

Further, the taxes imposed by Obamacare are particularly onerous. According to Congressional Budget Office scores, at least 20 new or higher taxes on American families and small businesses are included under the law. Altogether, the taxes add up to an additional $1 trillion over the next 10 years. This is one of the largest tax hikes in American history. The president must realize American families are already struggling through a weak economy and can't afford these additional tax burdens.

In an effort to address concerns with the disastrous rollout of Obamacare, the House Energy and Commerce Committee recently held a hearing to question the Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. During the hearing Secretary Sebelius said that Americans "deserve better."For once I agree with her - Americans deserve a health care system that gives them the ability to choose an affordable plan that works for them and isn't rationed by the federal government.

Obamacare is simply not working. Americans are struggling to meet the requirements of the fl awed law and are frustrated with expanded government. We have worked in the House to pass bills that would help ease these burdens; however the Senate has refused to act on any of this legislation. Looking forward, I can assure my constituents that I will work with my colleagues in the House to address the issues with Obamacare and help produce commonsense reforms to our nation's health care system.

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