Sen. Cochran: 'Go Back to Drawing Board' on Obamacare

Saturday, 11 Jan 2014 10:12 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Lawmakers should "go back to the drawing board" to draft a new bipartisan healthcare law, Sen. Thad Cochran says, as Obamacare isn't living up to its promises.

"In the spirit of the New Year, we should resolve to help make our healthcare system more user-friendly and affordable," the Mississippi Republican said in Saturday's weekly GOP address.

"As this year begins, many people are worried about how the so-called Affordable Care Act, also known as ‘Obamacare,’ is affecting both their health and personal finances, Cochran said. "Republicans in the Senate think we should repeal or defund the program because of its cost and complexity."

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He pointed out that Obamacare was to be in full operation on New Year's Day, but "here we are two weeks into 2014, and the administration continues to struggle to implement the law’s burdensome mandates."

Further, Cochran said, it's "questionable" if the law will ever significantly expand insurance coverage.

"Five million Americans have been kicked out of the health plans that they liked and were promised they could keep," said Cochran. "Some of my constituents have discovered that the new insurance can cost twice as much as they had been paying. Many others are being denied access to doctors with whom they were perfectly happy."

The plan's future also looks bleak, and enrollment numbers don't make it look any better, said Cochran.

"[The numbers] don’t tell us how many of the enrollees have actually lost existing coverage and were forced into the exchanges; and the numbers don’t tell us whether applicants have actually paid their premiums and received coverage," Cochran said. "There is ample reason to be skeptical that those numbers will improve substantially."

The senator noted that legislation has been introduced to repeal Obamacare, and lawmakers should "go back to the drawing board and draft commonsense, bipartisan legislation that will work better for all Americans, without spending billions of taxpayer dollars to support these failing policies."

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