The Affordable Care Act needs a bipartisan overhaul

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  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Aug. 4, 2014 8:18 a.m.

    To "Laura Bilington" yes, I would have a hard time getting into a German Medical school because I would be very likely to take that education and leave.

    What I said about Germans getting into German medical schools is true. Yes it isn't as easy as getting a driver's license, but they reserve 20% of all seats in medical school for people that have waited a long time to get into med school. That means that if you have less than stellar grades, if you wait long enough you can get into med school.

    First of all, there is no such thing as unregulated free market, that is anarchy.

    What got us into this mess is actually micromanagement by government regulation. Costs have gone up because of the hundreds of mandates that the insurance companies have to deal with. For example in 1980 there were around 400 mandates, now there are over 2500 mandates.

    The fact is the industries that are complained about the most are also the most highly regulated. I think that is more than just a co-incidence.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 2, 2014 10:18 p.m.


    Oregon is dark blue politically but you live there so you know that. Of course your congressman is going to say what he said - he has to apease his base. Let's set the free loaders aside for a moment and talk just about the folks who had insurance prior to Obamacare. No one ...and I mean no one left or right or in the middle ... has seen the promise that Obama made of premium reduction come to pass. Losing your doctor and seeing your premiums go up are things that I think you will agree are poltically agnostic. The point is there are ugly things in Obamacare that HURT all people regardless of poltical party and having Democrat friends myself - yes even here in Utah of all places - HATE Obamacare. Interestingly they tried to put the partisan face on when the bill first passed but as year one rolled into year two they were getting really nervous. This past year was the kicker - they admited that this bill is a disaster and simply want it thrown out and a big reboot button pushed! Some things bring us all together!

  • Laura Bilington Maple Valley, WA
    Aug. 1, 2014 2:53 p.m.

    @Redshirt writes, "When it comes to their (German's) healthcare, that is a mess too. Their medical technology is about 10 to 20 years behind what we have in the US, and the government is so desperate for doctors that they will pay for people to go to Med school and will pay their living expenses while they go to school.

    The best solution is to get rid of the ACA, cut the massive regulations on the health care industry and on insurance companies. The free market can provide solutions if the government doesn't attempt to micro manage things."

    RedShirt, your statements about German medicine are nonsense. Try getting into a German medical school if you think they're "so desperate" for doctors.

    As for the free market providing solutions, you may not have noticed that the unregulated free market is what got us into this mess. Doctors buy up labs and imaging services and then order tests from them--now that's a great way to cut expenses. Have you read the statistics on doctors' ordering CAT scans once they buy into a company doing them? They ordered eleven times as many as they had before.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    July 31, 2014 3:09 p.m.

    Free-market solutions implemented by Republicans 2001 to 2008 solved every problem in America.


  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    July 31, 2014 10:16 a.m.

    To "ordinaryfolks" actually, the Germans don't have as strong a work ethic as you think. They have no problem letting the government care for them for years. Plus, many of the hardest workers in Germany are immigrants that don't qualify for the social welfare programs.

    When it comes to their healthcare, that is a mess too. Their medical technology is about 10 to 20 years behind what we have in the US, and the government is so desperate for doctors that they will pay for people to go to Med school and will pay their living expenses while they go to school.

    The best solution is to get rid of the ACA, cut the massive regulations on the health care industry and on insurance companies. The free market can provide solutions if the government doesn't attempt to micro manage things.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 31, 2014 9:37 a.m.

    Light and Liberty
    You asked "Wouldn't it be better to put him to bed where he belongs and return to compelling people to actually accept the glorious concept of choice?"
    I prefaced the argument by saying that was not going to happen. This expansion of the quasi-privatized health care system is embedded on our system. Try living in the real world in which choices are made, often by means of deciding which is the lesser "evil".

    You said: "Socialism, including ACA, is the lazy man's approach to life"
    Tell that to the Germans. They have a work ethic, a strong economy and socialism. It can work. We have modified versions of it here, and most of us aren't lazy.

    You said " give me free health care and I will give you my liberty!"
    Again, in the real world we all pay for someone's health care, be it by taxes, higher prices or the insurance game. Join it for solutions, not ad hominem attacks.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    July 31, 2014 8:59 a.m.

    Quotes from posters such as JoeBlow "The GOP has voted 50+ times to repeal it, but have yet to agree on anything in order to improve it." illustrate perfectly why bi-artisanship is so difficult. The allegation is not only incorrect, it is quantifiably dishonest. The House voted to actually repeal Obamacare only six times (and then, only if you count budget votes). There have actually been 54 votes regarding Obamcare, including defunding, delaying (including some of the same provisions that President Obama eventually delayed by executive administration) and repair (which includes 8 times the bill passed both houses of Congress and were signed by the president). Ironically, the president is still using his power to delay parts of the law that would have been consistent with many of the GOP measures unilaterally rejected by Harry Reid and the Democrats.

    The ACA was passed by the absolute most partisan of methods, attempts to fix the program are ignored and vilified - even when ultimately deemed necessary by the very partisans who created the mess - but now it is the Republicans fault?

    Passive/aggression is so unattractive, but so central to left wing politics

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    July 31, 2014 8:40 a.m.

    nicholdraper, if your daughter buys health insurance can she opt out of coverage for prostate cancer, testicular cancer and get lower rates? Can you opt out of mammogram coverage? No, that's the point of pooled risk.

    BTW, birth control medicines are used for much more than simply the prevention of pregnancy, so they do fit into a general medical category of pooled risks.

  • nicholdraper West Jordan, UT
    July 31, 2014 5:58 a.m.

    The attitude of many of the liberal posters on this blog are the reason there has been no bipartisan work done. I am a conservative who would like to see universal coverage. But, why mandate that I have to pay for non-risk items like birth control. It is offensive to require things like that in a law. I am not opposed to birth control, but I am opposed to a mandate for something that I know many people oppose. What happened to a free society?

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:14 p.m.

    You have been trashing it for years. Now that everyone likes it the editorial tune is changing.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 30, 2014 7:09 p.m.

    Light and Liberty.

    The reason that you have life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is because we have a strong national government dedicated to secure those things to us. Without the strength of our government to do its job, we would be living in a jungle and the only freedoms we would have would depend on our own individual strength.

    The reason we create a government is to control the people governed, ourselves included, to an acceptable level of cooperation and sharing. To govern is the same as to control. The trick of good government is control the bad things that people do and share the good in fairness. We want government to take away the liberty of people to do bad things.

    WE are all lazy, when we have something we have, our labor, and can trade it fairly for something else that we want, we would be fools not to. Generally the government has the fairest trade we can make.

  • Jazzsmack Holladay, UT
    July 30, 2014 7:02 p.m.


    You haven't offered one single fact.

    but repeated just the same old tired leftist lines about the republicans.

    The only real fact is the republicans were left out, and few were actually bribed to get it the law passed.

    This was rammed down our collective throats by the left while the democrats (not the republicans, they were told to sit in back of the bus by Obama!) controlled congress.

  • Jazzsmack Holladay, UT
    July 30, 2014 6:57 p.m.


    "death panels" under a different name were created in a stimulus package that or other similar bill that was passed later.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    July 30, 2014 6:04 p.m.

    patriot 4:31 p.m.:

    Jeff Merkley (one of my two senators) is running for reelection this year. From his website:

    "To make our health care system work for American families and small businesses, Jeff voted in favor of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, signed into law by President Obama in March 2010...Although the implementation of the law has been deeply flawed in Oregon, the new system makes important changes that must be preserved."

    Of course, you'd probably consider Oregon to be a "dark blue" state, but everything is compared to Utah. Not much I can do about that...

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 30, 2014 4:31 p.m.

    If Obamacare were great Democrat's running for re-election would be running toward it ...not away from it!! Find me ONE Democrat (not in a DARK BLUE state) willing to even mention the name "Obamacare".

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 30, 2014 4:27 p.m.

    re:The Real Maverick

    Well Maverick I guess you and 'your people" might get to retain the Senate ...but I doubt it. The polls don't favor the Dems at this point and every single Democrat running for re-election is running AWAY from Obamacare and not toward it - ever wonder why that is?? Obamacare is THE worse piece of legislation to ever be 'forced' down the throats of the America people. Let's recount the past couple years...

    1. the original cost of the bill was promised by your people to be 800 billion. It is now 2.5 trillion and growing...That is DEBT placed on our children.
    2. premiums were promised by your people to go down - they instead have gone up...way up!!! In many cases those who had insurance saw their premiums double or triple.
    3. we were promised to be able to keep our doctor and insurance plan but we now see that was a diliberate lie.
    4. the web application ...well lets just say this 100 million dollar mess was one of the worst pieces of software ever written.
    5. forced companies to go to part time jobs...ouch!!!

    I suggest you reboot!!

  • Light and Liberty St. George/Washington, UT
    July 30, 2014 3:58 p.m.

    Ordinary folks: How do you tweak Godzilla? Wouldn't it be better to put him to bed where he belongs and return to compelling people to actually accept the glorious concept of choice? Socialism, including ACA, is the lazy man's approach to life. It says, " I don't want to think about this. just give me free health care and I will give you my liberty!" Isn't there something important about liberty that is important enough to defend?

  • ECR Burke, VA
    July 30, 2014 3:55 p.m.

    2 bits said. "This insistence that REPUBLICANS wrote the ACA is just... ridiculous!"

    But Wilipedia said, "A 1993 Republican alternative, the Health Equity and Access Reform Today Act, contained a "universal coverage" requirement with a penalty for noncompliance—an individual mandate. Mark Pauly, who helped develop a proposal that included an individual mandate for George H.W. Bush, remarked, "I don’t remember that being raised at all. The way it was viewed by the Congressional Budget Office in 1994 was, effectively, as a tax

    in 2007 Republican Senator Bob Bennett and Democratic Senator Ron Wyden introduced the Healthy Americans Act, which also featured an individual mandate and state-based regulated insurance markets called "State Health Help Agencies". The bill initially attracted bipartisan support but died in committee. Many of the sponsors and co-sponsors remained in Congress during the 2008 healthcare debate.

    "By 2008 many Democrats were considering using this approach as the basis for healthcare reform. Experts have said that the legislation that eventually emerged from Congress in 2009 and 2010 bears many similarities to the 2007 bill and that it was deliberately patterned after Romney's state healthcare plan."

    So, it really isn't "ridiculous" to say that, is it?

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    July 30, 2014 3:50 p.m.

    Hey 2 bits . . .

    “How does locking the door and changing the locks so they can't get in.”

    Lol . . . Oh good . . . Another Right Wing “fact.”

    Obama changed the locks on what door? . . . The one that led to the signing of the ACA? Wow. Was that before or after the Clintons stole the White House China?

    You need to stop getting your “news” off of Right Wing websites.

    Hey Joe Capitalist –

    No, I never said Obamacare is a “GOP plan,” although it was roughly modeled after the Health Care Plan instituted in Massachusetts when Romney was governor.

    And yes, the Republicans had plenty of opportunity to participate in crafting the ACA.

    Obama’s quote in the Washington Post article was made well before the bill was signed into law. Check out the Washington Post article entitled “Obama invites Republicans to summit on health care”

    Of course, the mighty Republicans refused to participate, as history shows. And it's not Obama's word we are talking about. It's the word of the Washington Post. And no, it wasn't in the Opinion section.

    Facts are facts. Face the facts.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 30, 2014 3:03 p.m.

    I often wonder what universe that the Republican Tea Party activists live in if they think that the ACA (aka Obamacare) is going to mystically disappear. No law will ever get past a Senate filibuster by Democrats even if Republican Tea Party folks take over the Senate. And all the tea leaves say that no Republican Tea Party candidate will ever be elected President in my lifetime. Demographics alone defeat that notion.

    Like it or not (and it is not my favorite law), it is here to stay. If you want to participate in government and make a difference, get over it. Do you really think the Insurance lobby is going to let the "golden goose" get away? Are you really going to advocate pulling support from millions of people who now rely on "Obamacare"?

    Figure out ways to tweak the law so that it accomplishes what it ought to . Get the most people insured and paying for it some kind of way. Nobody should be able to freeload off the rest of us when they get sick and need care.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    July 30, 2014 2:45 p.m.

    To "UtahBlueDevil" the President promised that everything would be broadcast on C-SPAN, do you deny that?

    From the NBC article we find that the Democrats held closed door meetings and intentionally excluded Republicans, do you deny that?

    Since promises were broken and the GOP excluded, what logical sense does it make to say that Republicans refused to contribute?

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    July 30, 2014 2:16 p.m.




    Signed, J. Boehner

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 30, 2014 2:09 p.m.


    Re "FACT: The Republicans in Congress had plenty of opportunity to participate in crafting the ACA, but they REFUSED"...

    How does locking the door and changing the locks so they can't get in... present "Plenty of opportunity for Republicans to participate"???


    AFTER some in the public made a fuss about the closed door meetings (after Obama had promised over and over that ALL meetings on the ACA would be broadcast on CSPAN).... they GRUDGINGLY let Republicans participate. But they rejected EVERY PROPOSAL they made without even bringing ONE of their proposals up for a vote!


    This insistence that REPUBLICANS wrote the ACA is just... ridiculous!

    We were all here... we SAW what was going on! We all know Republicans were kept out of the process until WAY too late, and even then Harry Reid said "Give us your proposals" (with a wink and a nod, knowing NONE of them would see the light of day in the Senate).

    You can't blame THIS (meaning the ACA) on Republicans...

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    July 30, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    And to answer Redshirt 1701s point To Gary O, NONE. There was no open debate on the ACA. It was essentially snuck in under the covert Reid Senate plan with a lot of Democrats ending up with threats and sore arms. This is not the way a constitutional republic operates. It is the way a dictatorship does. And that spectacle is a reason I fear the Democrat party with power. They don't respect any opposition as having valid input. Is it any wonder that after that spectacle the Republicans began to do everything they could to stop Obama? Who wouldn't have? Obama, Reid, and Miss (we have to pass it to know what is in it.) Pelosi never wanted to work with the Republicans in the first place. And after the 2008 election, they didn't think they ever would have to. Then came along Scott Brown to replace Teddy Kennedy (that was rich, a Republican taking the most Democrat Senate seat in the country) and they ran to pass ACA at all costs. And then of course the 2010 House going GOP. The Democrats just believe they are smarter and above everyone else and know better.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 1:32 p.m.


    Get real. You Obama supporters can't make up your mind. On the one hand you try to tell us all that Obamacare was really a GOP plan to begin with. On the other hand you want us to believe that Obama was willing to work with the GOP while it was being crafted into law and wanted their input, their amendment proposals, and wanted to craft a bi-partisan bill but they refused.

    Nothing could be further from the truth. Obama, Reid and others wanted no part of GOP input in the bill. They were shut out of all discussions in crafting the bill. No one was given ample time to read it (even Dems) before it was voted on in the Senate using very questionable tactics. This bill was the exact opposite of a bi-partisan bill where both sides get to offer suggestions and get pieces of things they want in the actual bill.

    The Democrats simply wanted to rubber stamp the bill with GOP supporters' names without giving them any say in its contents. Gee...I wonder why the GOP didn't want to go along with that plan???

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 30, 2014 1:25 p.m.

    @Redshirt1701 - How many hours were broadcast? Exactly how much of the House's agenda and schedule does the White House control? I do recall meetings held at the White House that were broadcast on C-SPAN. Are you saying that Obama is at fault that the House did not broadcast their closed door meetings?

    All this talk about "taking responsibility".... why is that a one way discussion? Why is it?

    As recently as June 2014 we have the following,

    "At a recent closed-door House Republican caucus meeting, several conservatives pressed GOP leaders over the pledge Majority Leader Eric Cantor made in January that House Republicans would rally around an alternative to "Obamacare" and pass it this year."

    Both sides have many many closed door meetings and sessions. Pretending this is one side doing something the other hasn't or doesn't do is just s smudge of hypocrisy. Bottom line, if Obama were the dictator conservatives claim him to be, he would have powers to direct the House's agenda. But alas he isn't, and he can't.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    July 30, 2014 1:08 p.m.

    To "GaryO" but reality refutes your claims. If you read "Dems to bypass tradition on final health deal" on NBC's website we read that "House and Senate Democrats intend to bypass traditional procedures when they negotiate a final compromise on health care legislation, officials said Monday, a move that will exclude Republican lawmakers and reduce their ability to delay or force politically troubling votes in both houses." So explain how Republicans can refuse to go to a meeting they were excluded from in the first place?

    Plus, wasn't it Obama that said " But what we will do is, we'll have the negotiations televised on C-SPAN, so that people can see who is making arguments on behalf of their constituents, and who are making arguments on behalf of the drug companies or the insurance companies." How many hours of debates and meetings were broadcast on C-SPAN?

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    July 30, 2014 12:45 p.m.

    Hey JoeCapitalist -

    “Since you are so fond of facts, please provide me with one.”

    OK . . . Here it is again:

    FACT: The Republicans in Congress had plenty of opportunity to participate in crafting the ACA, but they REFUSED.

    I can see how it must be for you "Conservatives." Facts that go against your prejudices don't seem to stick in your collective mind very well.

    Need a refresher?

    FACT: The Republicans in Congress had plenty of opportunity to participate in crafting the ACA, but they REFUSED.

    Got it yet?

    I'm glad I could help.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 30, 2014 12:11 p.m.

    The liberals here are funny. They think that if the government has another try or more money or more control that they will get it right the next time. They think that the same people who couldn't even manage their own cafeteria can handle managing a massive health insurance program. The funniest things that many liberals say is that the ACA works, I ask how? How is insurance more affordable now that it averages 42% more than it did before the ACA? How is healthcare cheaper now that more taxes are levied on medical device and drug manufacturers? How is care more affordable now that most plans have gone to high deductible plans with $4000 deductibles? If your goal was to destroy healthcare in the US, then the ACA is successful otherwise it is a failure. Do you really trust the same people who came up with NCLB and CC, and countless failed programs to figure out this one?

    We don't need another version of the ACA, we need to get rid of it and cut the mandates back to the 1980's levels when insurance was more affordable and few people were considered uninsurable.

  • Light and Liberty St. George/Washington, UT
    July 30, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    Repeal ACA and every politician that voted for it, as well as educate the ignorant folk who don't understand the meaning of the word Liberty, the Constitution, or self governance! I represent a fair swath of the electorate, minor swath albeit for sure, but one that will not vote for any politician that wants to take away liberty, spit on the Constitution, or advocates for government interference in any aspect of our lives! Life, liberty, and happiness are real possibilities for those that understand the meaning of those words!

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:51 a.m.


    They don't have a death panel per say, but denying certain medical care due to age and condition amounts to the same thing. That happens in every socialist health care system. And it will if ours becomes one. Obama himself said when asked, that there comes a time for the old to just move on and get out of the way. And the original ACA was never sold to the American people as a complete reform of our current health care system. It was sold as a way to give medical care to some 30 to 40 million uninsured people. So why has it affected so many people who did not want it, need it or vote for it? Not one Republican voted for it, and it wouldn't have passed if Reid had not basically broken Senate rules to have it passed. Plus, if you remember, the Democrat leadership had to twist arms for votes. This was a bad way to pass what will possibly be the most expensive program in history.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:43 a.m.


    Since you are so fond of facts, please provide me with one. Name one thing that Obama has listened to and compromised on to appease the other half of the country (more than half if you now believe the polls) who disagree with his ideology.

    If I were a reporter interviewing him, my question would be simple "What was the biggest compromise you feel you have made with those who disagree with your policies?" It would be interesting to see if he could come up with anything, let alone something significant.

    An answer like "I only raised taxes 15% instead of the 20% I wanted" or "I only allowed 5 million illegals into the country instead of the 10 million I wanted" would be a cop-out.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:38 a.m.

    @Real Maverick

    Re "Those on the right who claim that health care isn't a RIGHT need to wake up"....

    So... Where is Healthcare mentioned in the Bill Of Rights, or the Constitution as a "Right"?


    And if it IS.... have we been violating the Constitution since 1787? Or is this a NEW right you just made up?


    I seriously doubt that the Founding Fathers intended Healthcare to be a "RIGHT". Or they would have mandated Government Healthcare from the start! But they didn't.

    It's not a "Right". It's something you buy. Something you PAY FOR. You don't have to PAY for "Rights".


    It may be something we expect now days, but it's NOT factually a "Right".

    There's no price-tag on "Rights", they are innate. There IS a price-tag one medical care. Each pill, each procedure, each office visit.... costs you (or your insurance company) a dollar amount. When was the last time you had to PAY a fee to have Religious Freedom dispensed, or any other "RIGHT"?

    Food, housing, medical care... are very good things for a Government, employer, or society to provide... but they are NOT actually "RIGHTS".

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:34 a.m.

    steamroller: "Now for sure, Obama also told a lie when he said everybody who likes their health care plan can keep it...that did turn out to be false. The difference is, he stopped saying it!"

    That argument might hold some water if he had stopped saying it before the ACA became law or before the election was over. That is like saying some scam artist's actions are somehow OK because he stopped scamming you AFTER he got your money and had nothing further to gain by continuing to lie.

    I also disagree with you that none of the predicted ill effects of the law have happened. I think many of the predictions of the law's opponents have happened and continue to happen.

  • idazut Riverton, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:05 a.m.

    A joke that's been around a long time: How many legs does a mule have if you call it's tail a leg? Answer: Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn't make it one. The Supreme Court ruling was crystal clear. A mandate enforced by a penalty is unconstitutional but Justice Roberts decided to preserve an unconstitutional law by calling a penalty a tax. Calling a penalty a tax doesn't make it one. It's still a penalty and the law is still unconstitutional. The legislative history of the law makes it crystal clear that Congress wanted a penalty, not a tax. The legislative history also makes it crystal clear that those pushing for the law were willing to use every underhanded political trick in the book to get it passed.

    If this law is so great why has Mr Obama repeatedly refused to enforce the most berdensome parts of the law? Answer: He doesn't want you to know what this law is going to do to you until he has regained control of the Senate.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    July 30, 2014 11:03 a.m.

    Matt Miller, from the Washington Post wrote an interesting article during the last presidential David Beatty (a 70-year-old Toronto native who ran food processing giant Weston Foods and a holding company called the Gardiner Group during a career that has included service on more than 30 corporate boards and a recent appointment to the Order of Canada, one of the nation’s highest honors. By temperament and demeanor, Beatty is the kind of tough-minded, suffer-no-fools wealth creator who conservatives typically cheer. "He told me how baffled he and Canadian business colleagues are when they listen to the U.S. health-care debate. He cherishes Canada’s single-payer system for its quality and cost-effectiveness (Canada boasts much lower costs per person than the United States). And don’t get him started on the system’s administrative simplicity — you just show your card at the point of service, and that’s it. It’s just “common sense” in Beatty’s view that government takes the lead in assuring basic health security for its citizens.

    If we are going to repeal the ACA, single payer is the way to go.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    July 30, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    Washington "needs a bipartisan overhaul".

    This infantile way of running our country is getting really tired. Enough from both side.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    July 30, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    @mike richards. I think most adults know that a doctor visit does not cost $20 but much more. Every person gets a statement of charges and explaination of what the doctor charged, what the insurance will pay and what the patient is responsible for.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 30, 2014 10:56 a.m.

    Ultra Bob,

    "It was dumb of President Obama to allow his name to be associated with the legislation otherwise known as the Affordable Health Care Act, when the real truth is that it was created and written by businessmen in the health care industry...."


    How selective memory can be in the minds of those trying to rewrite the historical record more to their liking. Allow me to refresh our memory on what actually happened. Obamacare was the derisive term Republicans came up with for the ACA to impugn it and hopefully to kill it altogether.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:52 a.m.

    I don't know about overhaul, but when Bush passed Medicare Part D to the dislike of many Democrats, when it came to implementing that Democrats looked past that and helped make the little tweaks necessary to make such a large program work. It'd be nice if Republicans could do the same. You don't have to support the overall bill, just support keeping things from harming people.

    Like right now there's that lawsuit going through that, unlikely as it is since the courts typically rule based on intent of law rather than harp on typos, might result in people in 36 states (the current number using the federal exchange) being unable to access subsidies. One would hope that Congress could pass a one sentence bill clarifying that to help those 36 states avoid that possibility but I have no expectation of that occurring.

  • Nate Pleasant Grove, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:50 a.m.

    @marxist "The ACA is an attempt to accommodate every corporate interest involved in health care...."

    What you're describing is called cronyism. And yes, it's rampant in Obamacare. It has nothing to do with the free market.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    July 30, 2014 10:43 a.m.

    In the interest of fairness and "bipartisanship" I'd like to quote the entire context around which Former Speaker Pelosi made the statement that has been truncated and mis-used by Republicans and the lazy press who would rather write a controversial story than a true one. What she said was:

    "You've heard about the controversies, the process about the bill…but I don’t know if you've heard that it is legislation for the future – not just about health care for America, but about a healthier America. But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it – away from the fog of the controversy."

    She was not suggesting nobody knew what was in it, she was simply suggesting that until it was implemented no one could see past the "fog of the controversial" comments made by it's opponents.

    The ACA definitely needs to be updated, modified, fixed in a bi-partisan manner. But when the DN prints "the Obama administration needs to recognize that they can’t be selective which parts of the ACA they’re willing to enforce" one wonders what choice has the obstructionist opposition given him?

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 30, 2014 10:40 a.m.


    "It is absurd to blame Republicans for a bill, and a process, controlled entirely by BO and the democrats in Congress...."

    No, what's absurd is how Republicans who turned their noses up at crafting a healthcare plan when their views were actively solicited are now crying about how they had no input.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:31 a.m.

    It was dumb of President Obama to allow his name to be associated with the legislation otherwise known as the Affordable Health Care Act, when the real truth is that it was created and written by businessmen in the health care industry. It is not what was promised and not what the people of America wanted. It was probably one of those things that politicians refer to as a compromise.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:11 a.m.

    you don't "overhaul" bad software, you scrap it and start over with a new set of requirements and architecture. You don't overhaul something as poorly architected as Obamacare - you scrap it and start over and this time you actually try to focus on improving health care instead of creating a Socialist wealth redistribution scam. Nothing will EVER happen to this hideous bill until you have a GOP congress and president.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:10 a.m.

    Saying the ACA needs a bi-partisan overhaul is like saying the GOP needs to shun the radical religious groups that have hijacked the party and embrace science and moderation once again.

    Unfortunately, it isn't going to happen.

    There's just too much money to be made by endorsing fascism and using desperate Americans to finance your religious channel or "conservative" think tank. Just look at how the Eagle Forum and Sutherland Institute steal so much money from those here in utah. Money that could be better spent on health care or education.

    Unfortunately, selling fear, paranoia, or miracles in the form of local or religious control is so lucrative for those in charge!

    Could you imagine Gayle or Mero trying to actually get a real job?

  • Fitz Murray, UT
    July 30, 2014 10:05 a.m.

    ACA, aka Obamcare, should be repealed and the whole health care concept should be reevaluated. SCOTUS found that ACA, under the Commerce Clause, was unconstitutional. They then said the fee was not a fee (changing terms is something SCOTUS frowns on but did in this case), but is, rather, a tax. And if you go back and read the decisions, then you would know that the tax could be challenged once it became effective. The 'tax' has become effective, to a degree, and has been found to be both unconstitutional and constitutional, leaving a mess before us. Obama has made a number of exceptions, something not allowed in the ACA law which, like his NLRB illegal appointments, is illegal and invalid. But without it, ACA would have more law suits and more problems.

    If there is to be a national health care law, (which is highly questionable, probably unconstitutional under the Commerce Clause, and probably unconstitutional under the 9th Amendment), then it should be a single payer insurance. And it should take Medicaid, move it to Medicare, with everyone having basic converge, with a right to have supplemental insurance (that is not taxed).

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    July 30, 2014 10:02 a.m.

    Hey JoeCapitalist -

    You "Conservatives" can deny reality as much as you want.

    But the facts are pretty stubborn, and they are not going to back down just because you say they don't exist.

    FACT: The Republicans in Congress had plenty of opportunity to participate in crafting the ACA, but they REFUSED.

    Facts are facts.

    Face the facts.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:54 a.m.

    How do you put a Bipartisan-patch on a bill that come to life with such partisan methods??

    After the partisan strong-arm tactics, locking other party out when the bill was being written, and ram it down the other party's throat (like it or not), and the shenanigans INTENDED to make the other party look bad... Can you expect BIPARTISANSHIP at THIS point!

    That's why it's so important to START the process as a bipartisan effort. Even IF you have a Super-Majority and don't need any votes from the other party (at the time). Because you aren't going to have that Super-Majority forever... so sooner or later you're going to need them on your side (IF you want the legislation to last more than a few years).

    This COULD have been done so much better IF Democrats had not been so intoxicated with their new Super-Majority power-trip(making them think they could do ANYTHING they wanted) when writing this bill...

    Lessons learned... try to involve the minority and deliver SOME Bipartisan win-win... so it doesn't become a lighting rod for partisan attacks in the future.

  • azreader1 tucson, AZ
    July 30, 2014 9:49 a.m.

    It is absurd to blame Republicans for a bill, and a process, controlled entirely by BO and the democrats in Congress. The ACA should die a quick death, and the dems who forced it upon the country should be voted out of office. Obfuscation and pointing the finger of blame at Republicans is fundamentally dishonest and richly deserves the ridicule and condemnation of the electorate. Of course, those who are being heavily subsidized will always think this is a great idea, but those who are being forced to pay for this democrat largesse are entirely justified in being upset about this boondoggle.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:40 a.m.

    The ACA is working. Revisions are fine, but the GOP has only destruction on its mind, with zero proposals to make it better. All the critics want to return to a system that is a failure. The ACA at least makes some improvements, albeit less than perfect. Unless we move to a single payer system, no more talk of change without some specific proposals that don't take us back to the mess that was before the ACA.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    July 30, 2014 9:38 a.m.

    So now a bi-partisan overhaul is what the ACA needs, eh? If I didn't know the Deseret News' ideological bent, I might be wondering if the DN editorial desk is going for laughs with this editorial.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:32 a.m.

    Re: Nate "Unfortunately the trend is away from free market principles and toward socialism."

    Please give us your definition of "free market principles." The ACA is an attempt to accommodate every corporate interest involved in health care - it's nothing like socialism.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:13 a.m.

    BobK: "President Obama practically made a fool of himself asking republicans over and over again to contribute ideas to the bill when it was before Congress."

    And you actually believe that? This president has proven over and over again that he is not trustworthy. He will say anything to get elected or get his way. The blatent "If you like your doctor..." lie and dozens of others since prove that we can't trust anything he says.

    He might have taunted his GOP opponents to "give him their ideas", but nothing he has done would suggest he would have thoughtfully considered any of them.

  • Star Bright Salt Lake City, Ut
    July 30, 2014 9:11 a.m.

    Funny, the Republicans were shut out completely in making the law. Remember that closed, guarded door in the hall where di n gy harry reid wouldn't allow any one in but dems?
    But when it's in trouble it should be a bi partisan effort.

  • Ogrepete Sandy, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:07 a.m.

    One party ignored the other party to get this law passed. That won't be forgotten anytime soon, despite those commenters above who seem to have already forgotten that rather pertinent fact.

    The next time President Obama actually invites (and welcomes) Conservative ideas will be the first time. He's ignored Republicans as much as possible his entire time in office.

  • humbug Syracuse/Davis, UT
    July 30, 2014 9:05 a.m.

    Actually, Orrin Hatch's bill is not a good starting point. It increases taxes for middle-income persons. And if you have a period where you are without health insurance, then you can no longer get it, guaranteed, under Hatch's proposal. This is a lousy idea.

  • Nate Pleasant Grove, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:46 a.m.

    Let's at least be honest about our goals. The Affordable Care Act was always more about universal access than it was about affordability. If we want real reform, and we're serious about affordability, we can rely on basic economic principles to reduce costs.

    The worst of our problems are demand problems. Costs go up when demand is high. Demand is artificially high, because we have a system in which consumers no longer pay directly for what they consume. We all think someone else will pay (employers, the insurance company, the state, the federal government). People, being human, use more products and services when other people are sharing the costs. If we were directly responsible to pay for what we consumed, we would make wiser decisions, and the aggregate result would be lower costs for everyone.

    Other things we can do to reduce costs: remove legal barriers to open competition; eliminate costly regulations; reduce incentives to bring exorbitant lawsuits against doctors and hospitals.

    Unfortunately the trend is away from free market principles and toward socialism. But we can change direction -- and should -- if we really want health care to be more affordable.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:42 a.m.

    RE: The Real Maverick "Besides, if we have $2 trillion to waste on Iraq, certainly we have enough money for health care on Americans."

    That sum would have paid for our people's health care for 50 years.

  • RG Buena Vista, VA
    July 30, 2014 8:40 a.m.

    Thanks BYUalum for pointing out the very corrupt way in which the (non)ACA was passed. I am always amazed at how many people don't seem to care about this. It should be revolting to all.

    For all those who complain about the GOP and how they didn't help pass the bill: their wisdom is now manifest. Look at all the unintended consequences that the (non)ACA has caused, from fewer full time jobs to Drs. who want to abandon the profession to the incompetent website, which BTW is not secure, and the question of who gets subsidized (since the Dems didn't read the bill before passing it) etc etc.

    And yes, the GOP DID put forth several ideas to improve healthcare/insurance!! But Obama didn't want the cooperation of the GOP unless it was to further his statist agenda.

    For all you liberals who think that a single payer system is the way to go, just look at our single payer system, the VA!! This is a model of what a national single payer system will be.

    Big govt. solutions always backfire, are full of unintended consequences, and are subject to abuse and waste. Always.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:34 a.m.

    Those on the right who claim that health care isn't a right need to wake up.

    Besides, if we have $2 trillion to waste on Iraq, certainly we have enough money for health care on Americans.

  • Noodlekaboodle Poplar Grove, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:23 a.m.

    You know who disagree's with your assessment that mandating that everyone buys health insurance is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court, and their opinion on constitutionality...well it's kind of the only one that really matters in the end. It's not a debate anymore, which is why the Deseret News wouldn't mention it.

  • BYUalum South Jordan, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:18 a.m.

    This whole AFA was "rammed" through Congress. No Democrat would dare speak out against BHO because of the political backlash. They still won't because of the same reason! The 2,000+ page document was not read by anyone in Congress because of the rush to vote on it in the eleventh hour (Pelosi, "We'll have to read it later to find out what's in it!)

    There were many bribes and payoffs to get Senators to vote for this awful bill. (i.e. Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska for one.) We all knew it was a train wreck from the beginning, and nobody in the GOP voted for it. The many, many offers Republicans made were ignored. The public was outraged that the Congress was exempt from this mandate. Then came the many, many executive orders with changes made by BHO with his pen. And it continues!

    We lost 3 outstanding doctors because of it, one retired, one left to go teach in a university, and the other left to go to Switzerland to practice. Obamacare needs to go in my opinion. Let the states and free enterprise handle health care, not big government and the IRS!

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 8:11 a.m.

    It is evident that American capitalism cannot deliver health care to the people. Health care will come to the vast bulk of our population only with socialism. There is no other alternative.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    July 30, 2014 7:58 a.m.

    "the most humane thing we can do is to put it out of its misery; repeal it before it can metastasize and continue to infect our entire economy and cause even more devastation than it has already!"

    OK Thid. For the sake of discussion, lets say you are correct.

    The way I see it, in years to come, medicare/medicaid are slated to completely bust the budget. Would you agree with that? If not, what data are you looking at?

    So, the way I see it, the problem MUST be addressed.

    We have 3 choices as I see it.

    1) reduce benefits
    2) combat the rising costs (which by any measure are way out of line compared to other countries)
    3) raise taxes to cover the shortfall.

    So, if the GOP is successful in repealing, what is the plan going forward?
    What is your plan.

    I am still amazed that with all this endless talk of repeal, the GOP has not agreed on ONE plan to combat the inevitable.

    One could argue that the Dems are misguided in their attempts to fix healthcare, but at least they acknowledge a problem.

    The GOP acts as if the old system was sustainable.

  • JimInSLC Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 7:57 a.m.

    It is disturbing how divided people have become on the ACA and other issues, taking sides with one or the other party. A house divided cannot stand.

    Those arguing for the ACA apparently do not see it as a scheme of the government to get more tax revenue. The ACA will only raise costs of health care. And, as people delay routine health procedures, since it will be paid out of pocket because the high deductible has not been met, we will see more serious/costly health care needs increase.

    It is not the governments responsibility to provide healthcare. People need to stop equating health insurance to health care. healthcare is right eating, right thinking, and exercise/work it is a personal responsibility. The cost burden of the ACA will be put on the backs of taxpayers not yet born and that is not right.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 30, 2014 7:56 a.m.

    A wise and balanced commentary. Thank you.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    July 30, 2014 7:55 a.m.

    You want to make adjustments to the ACA and as a starting point use Hatch's bill? The very first principle of the Hatch bill is the complete repeal of "Obamacare"

    The next overriding principle is whatever the bill says the states can say no and do what they want.

    From there they move to completely gut insurance plans of comprehensive coverage. First all mandated services are repealed, then if your plan is a good plan you will be taxed as ordinary income on everything your employer pays above 65% of the premium.

    So far which of these changes look like improvements to the health care coverage of Americans?

    Next they move to cost with the ever popular tax credits. No subsidies. Of course if you're poor you already don't pay federal taxes, but hey let's give you some more credits you can't use to pay that monthly premium.

    And of course the whole ineffective health insurance situation will be fixed by the creme de le crème (I'm sure that's not spelled right)..tort reform.

    When you all come up with something useful let us know, we'll listen.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    July 30, 2014 7:54 a.m.

    The obstinate abstinence of the GOP when it comes to the ACA is embarrassing if not negligent. It is yet another example of the hijacking of my lifelong political party by extremists, and why I cannot support that radical sect any longer.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 30, 2014 7:45 a.m.

    The editorial said, "Yet many who are eager to see its collapse are offering few alternatives to address the nation’s pressing health care problems."

    The "nation" has no health care problem. PEOPLE have health care problems. The Constitution allows the federal level of government to tax us to pay for the seventeen duties we have assigned to the federal level of government. ALL other duties are to be left to the States or to the people.

    The Federal Government is directly responsible for high health care costs. FDR froze wages. Companies started offering "health care" in lieu of wages. Now, everyone expects "free" health care. Nothing is free. Company sponsored health insurance is in lieu of wages.

    Doctors need extra people on staff to handle insurance claims. Prices reflect those additional people.

    People think that a doctor visit costs $20, when the insurance company pays $200 or more.

    Their are 50 states. Let each one handle health care issues, as Romney did in Massachusetts. At least one of the States will get it right.

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    July 30, 2014 7:21 a.m.

    Funniest op-ed ever. What evidence can you offer to suggest that the current House of Representatives has any interest whatsoever in fixing anything, at all?

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    July 30, 2014 7:13 a.m.

    There is an old saying, "One rotten apple will spoil the entire barrel". Obamacare has terminal flaws; it will never get any better and is dying an excruciating death on its own! Like the cancer that it is, the most humane thing we can do is to put it out of its misery; repeal it before it can metastasize and continue to infect our entire economy and cause even more devastation than it has already!

  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    July 30, 2014 6:52 a.m.

    An appreciated comment from the DNews, but I wish that some attention had been also given to the unconstitutionality of mandating insurance via Congress, and the hardship caused by such onerous mandates. I wish to be free to choose my own insurance or to have none at all, and foot my own bills if I create them.

    However, YES, there should be a bipartisan overhaul, or preferably rejection, of the "affordable" (laugh or cry out loud) health care act. In the latter, legal and preferred, course the states might legally, and one hopes wisely, broach the subject at a state level.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 30, 2014 6:41 a.m.

    Do you really think that the Republican/Tea Party wants to do anything but destroy this bill?

    No Republican/Tea Party member of the House or Senate dares to offer constructive changes to the ACA. It is party doctrine, akin to the laws of gravity and the wishes of the NRA, that no one can support the law known as Obamacare. Any Republican/Tea Party member who dares voice acceptance of the healthcare act would be drummed out of office, even if he/she would be offering changes that make it work better.

    I don't know why the DN is offering this hint and wink to the public that suggests constructive change is possible. I doubt that Sen. Hatch's bill is all that serious either. He wishes to remain Senator for life, and knows how the political winds blow in Utah.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    July 30, 2014 6:12 a.m.

    "the Affordable Care Act shows that it needs a bipartisan overhaul"

    Think so huh?

    You know, the ACA could have been bipartisan to begin with. The President practically begged Republicans to help design the law, but they spurned his offer.

    "I want to consult closely with our Republican colleagues . . . What I want to do is to ask them to put their ideas on the table. . . . I want to come back and have a large meeting, Republicans and Democrats, to go through, systematically, all the best ideas that are out there and move it forward." - B. H. Obama February 8, 2010

    But NO . . . Smug Republican Legislators REFUSED to do their jobs. Apparently, they didn't realize that legislators are supposed to legislate. Instead, they REFUSED to participate in crafting the MOST IMPORTANT LAW of the 21st century.

    And now Republicans say "the Affordable Care Act shows that it needs a bipartisan overhaul?"

    Well now . . . That window of opportunity may have SLAMMED SHUT.

    Think of it as a learning experience.

    When Republicans learn to elect competent representation, then they will get competent representation.

    . . . Does that make sense?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    July 30, 2014 5:57 a.m.

    "negotiate in good faith for substantial changes to the law with which legislators from both parties are able to live."

    Negotiate in good faith.. Now there's a novel idea. Except both sides must do it to be effective.
    This article only seems to chastise Obama.

    The GOP has voted 50+ times to repeal it, but have yet to agree on anything in order to improve it.

    The American people would welcome constructive changes. Can someone please point out ANY provisional changes that the GOP is proposing?

  • LOU Montana Pueblo, CO
    July 30, 2014 4:13 a.m.

    The ACA is not this huge government handout. It assists only the most poverty stricken. What it has done is set laws that the Republicans should have passed during the Reagan years. What the

    ACA does not need is the Republicans putting their GREEDY fingers into it!!

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    July 30, 2014 2:23 a.m.

    A-- The entire idea was originally proposed by republicans, but, since it would cost rich donors lost income, they abandoned it.
    B-- Health care reform should have been done in the Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush administrations, but the lobbyists for those donors stopped it.
    C-- President Obama practically made a fool of himself asking republicans over and over again to contribute ideas to the bill when it was before Congress.
    D-- No bills improving the ACA have been introduced by republicans.
    E-- About 50 attempts at repeal have come out of the House, while nothing on fixing unemployment, immigration or the infrastructure has been done.

    The DN is correct that the ACA should be kept, but, I am sorry to say, totally dreaming to suggest that the present version of the republican party will assist in improving it.

    Hospital corporations, multimillionaire doctors, pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, and others give obscene amounts of money to Congress. I would venture that every poor child could be fed with half that money.

    Why not call for lobbying reform that might change Congress, or the end to "safe districts" that effectively kill the 2 party system?

  • Mainly Me Werribee, 00
    July 30, 2014 1:45 a.m.

    The Not Very Affordable Care Act needs to be repealed. That will require a bi-partisan effort.

  • prelax Murray, UT
    July 30, 2014 1:19 a.m.

    Obama just gave waivers to people living in US territories, including Puerto Rico. Everyone now has a waiver, except the American taxpayer.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 30, 2014 12:27 a.m.

    I and many of my friends on the left begged for "medicare for all." It's doubtful Obama could have gotten that through Congress, but he should have tried.

    The future of health care looks bad in the United States given our current politics. It's as though the political right wants to punish low and moderate income people through denial of health care. Politicians of all stripes need to understand there is building rage among the U.S. electorate.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 30, 2014 12:03 a.m.

    It needs it but it won't get it.

    One political party is determined to kill Obamacare. There's no negotiation or compromise with them.

    Our only hope is to retain the senate and take back the house.