Senator: Americans to face 'sticker shock' at healthcare 'exchanges'

Sept. 7, 2013 at 9:30 AM
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WASHINGTON, Sept. 7 (UPI) -- President Obama's healthcare law is too expensive for American families, a former orthopedic surgeon, now a Republican member of the Senate, said Saturday.

Delivering the GOP's weekly media address, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said "there's no question we needed real reform -- reform so that people could get the care they needed, at lower cost," The Hill reported.

"What we got is higher taxes and bigger government, without the lower costs or quality care."

Barrasso's comments came in advance of new healthcare "exchanges" due to open across the country in October that will provide Americans without health insurance a place to buy coverage.

Families buying insurance at the exchanges will face "sticker shock," he said, because coverage will cost more than expected.

A study by the non-profit Kaiser Family Foundation, he said, found the average family premiums for people getting their health insurance through work had gone up $3,000 since Obama took office, ABC Radio News reported.

Barrasso said he heard some businesses were cutting back on employees or hiring them only part-time to avoid falling under the law's mandates.

A provision of the law, which has been delayed until 2015, says businesses with 50 or more employees are required to offer their workers health insurance or pay a penalty.

"The president had grand intentions when he set out to reform health care in this country," Barrasso said, "but he made things worse."

He asked for public support in pushing to repeal the law, CNN reported.

"The American people have a choice," he said. "We can embrace the status quo of Obamacare for four more years. Or we can repeal the law, and quickly move to help people get the care they need, from a doctor they choose, at lower cost."

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