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RESIST PUSH TO REPEAL OR CRIPPLE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT SAY ROBERT WEINER AND NAKIA GLADDEN IN PALM BEACH POST TODAY: Claude Pepper's 1989 National Health Repeal Lesson

They remind the public that, "Sen. Charles Grassley, R- Iowa, and Sarah Palin first pushed the notion that the bill would create 'death panels' for senior citizens, to determine if they were too old or too at-risk to receive benefits, ignoring that insurance companies do exactly that.  Claiming, 'We don't want government in our health care,' opposition leaders forgot to tell seniors that's what Medicare is, and seniors love it. Rep. Louie Gohmert, R- Tex., stated, 'How much more socialist can you get than a government telling everybody what they can do?'"

Weiner and Gladden explain, "Whether out of common sense or a desire for money, some former opponents have come around. Rick Scott became one of seven Republican governors to favor the law's Medicaid expansion, saying, 'While the federal government is committed to paying 100 percent of the cost, I cannot, in good conscience, deny Floridians that need it access to health care.'"

They cite as another example that " Florida's 22nd congressional district, which includes parts of Palm Beach and Broward counties and is represented by Democrat Lois Frankel, has 147,000 residents who lack health care insurance but are now eligible for it. According to Rep. Frankel, 'The Obamacare plan is going to take 33 million (uninsured) people and put them into the insurance market' across the nation."

Weiner and Gladden contend, "Supporters need to remain firm. In December, as part of the 'fiscal cliff' deal, the administration agreed to take out the CLASS Act, which provided long-term care insurance benefits to employees: Mr. Pepper's dream. Last month, President Obama delayed the Obamacare employer mandate. Republicans earlier required the administration to bar educational funding for the bill, forcing Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius to do outside fund-raising to inform people they are eligible. Twenty-four Republican governors are refusing to authorize the law's optional insurance exchanges or Medicaid expansion – denying any coverage to over 15 million Americans."

The authors point out, "Last week, President Obama re-launched an effort to keep the law in place, and stated that it helps to 'deliver more choices, better benefits, a check on rising costs, and higher quality care. We're already seeing those effects take place.' The law has already put millions of young people on parents' plans, covered patients with pre-existing conditions and given families insurance rebates from overcharges."

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