Dear Undecided Voter,
By this point in this year's election, most candidates have stopped trying to win you over. Instead, the focus really turns from wooing you to getting their supporters to turn out. But I'm not a candidate, so I want to discuss with you why I am voting for Republicans. It isn't the normal talking points; instead, it is about my biggest fear if we do not elect Mitt Romney and a Republican Senate. And it all boils down to Obamacare.
Democrats played hardball when they crafted Obamacare. They did not wish to negotiate with Republicans, nor did they care for Republican input. Because they had majorities, they were able to do this and ultimately force the bill through on a Christmas Eve.
As an independent, I trust that you are exactly the type to mistrust legislation that one side bullies through, whichever side that may be. And the poll numbers have shown that most of you do. And some of you have legitimate fears about healthcare for yourself and/or your family, and this bill may appear to address those fears. I can respect that. But as this bill starts to take hold in 2013, their is one scary consequence, and I'm not talking about "death panels." I'm talking about your impending loss of you plan.
If you have an employee provided healthcare, as much it may enrage you, that plan costs your employer a huge amount of money. In addition to what you pay, your employer is probably contributing somewhere in the neighborhood of $6,000 to $12,000 a year for your healthcare plan. The Obamacare Bill provides what it calls a "penalty" of $2,000 to your employer if they drop your coverage. But as anyone can see, that $2,000 is significantly less than what they are paying for the plans. I don't know about you, but I call that an "incentive" to drop your healthcare plan.
I'm not going to bother going into why they set that fine so low, because that is laden political baggage, and I just want to talk about a real world affect here. Faced with saving that much money per employee, your employer WILL drop your insurance coverage. They won't all do it at first, but in each industry, in each sector, an employer will have difficulties and have no choice but to cut the plans. That will be the trigger for every other employer to do the same in order to stay competitive.
When your employer kills your fringe benefit of healthcare, that will reduce your total compensation by what they paid for your plan. So that means your compensation will decrease by $6,000 to $12,000. That will not be passed onto you in wages. Now you will need to go into a state exchange to buy insurance because you are required to carry it in Obamacare. Your old plan will probably be there, but it will cost $6,000 to $12,000 more than your share of it used to be, so you probably won't be able to afford your old plan.
In order to find a plan in the range of your old contribution to your old employer healthcare plan, you will need to buy a truly crummy plan. Many self employed are already familiar with this. You will have very high deductibles ($10,000 and up), and the plans will be even more restrictive than your current plans.
This is a serious flaw in the current health care plan, and it needs to be fixed. But if President Obama receives four more years, and the Senate remains in Democrat hands, it won't be. They own this bill, and it will not be in their interests to admit flaws, because they cannot blame "the other side" for them. If you and your family have a bit of bad luck, you may very easily find yourselves tens of thousands of dollars of medical debt in 4 years when you have your next chance to vote for President.
I've tried to avoid the hot topic political issues in discussing this. It is just my personal plea to you. The Obamacare bill is seriously flawed. It needs to be fixed. And the only way to do that is to create the environment in Washington where it can be, and that's by voting for Mitt Romney and a Republican for Senate, if you can. In two years, you can give the House or the Senate back to Democrats if you don't like the results. But if we don't, I don't think any of us will like the results.
This was pretty long, even for a blog post. So if you've gotten this far, thanks for considering what I had to say. Get out there on Tuesday and vote!