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Opponents challenge U.S. health care reform bill
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2011-04-18 15:33
One year after U.S. President Barack Obama signed into law the new health care reform bill, opponents have intensified their efforts to repeal and defund the law and Obama will be forced to defend this legislation in his re- election campaign.

The Las Vegas based Citizen Outreach organization has started sending out mass e-mails during the weekend, calling supporters to send e-mails or faxes to their local U.S. Congressional members asking for the repeal or defund of the health care reform bill.

The message from Citizen Outreach called the health care reform bill as the Obamacare, and said that "If Obamacare is not repealed many economists expect Obamacare to cost American taxpayers 2.5 trillion dollars over 10 years, between 2014 and 2024."

Obama said that under his plan, "... no family making less than 250,000 dollars will see their taxes increase -- not your income taxes, not your payroll taxes, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes. ... I will cut taxes ... for 95 percent of all working Americans."

The message said Obama lied. When Congressional Democrats passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), and Obama signed Obamacare into law, he officially broke his promises to American taxpayers.

Obama said: "If you like your healthcare plan, you'll be able to keep your healthcare plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what." Obama added, "... nothing changes, except your cost will go down."

However, the message said that under Obamacare, seniors will lose access to care. Access to healthcare will become more difficult because of massive reductions in Medicare payments. And, cuts to private Medicare Advantage options will cause 7.4 million seniors to lose their current coverage.

"What happened to the reassuring predictions that everybody's plans would stay the same?" asked Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, speaking against Obamacare.

"It turned out to be nonsense. The Obama administration has already admitted that at least seven million seniors will now lose their Medicare Advantage plans. Contrary to the confident predictions of some, the contents of the health care bill are even worse than anyone expected. A year after Democrats passed it on a party-line vote, it looks even worse that it did then," McConnell noted.

According to the message, Obamacare cuts Medicare by 529 billion dollars over 10 years. It quoted Richard Foster, chief actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, as saying that seniors are going to have trouble getting access to healthcare; and, they will have a difficult time finding a doctor. One in three new Medicare-eligible people today is already having a difficult time finding a doctor.

The message said Obamacare means fewer doctors to care for patients: Obamacare did not fix the Medicare physician payment formula, so in December 2010 doctors faced a 23 percent payment cut.

The increase in the number of Americans enrolled in Medicaid, combined with the fact that Medicaid pays doctors an average of 56 percent of what they would get in private practice with paying customers, will test the willingness of many doctors and specialists to continue to serve the Medicaid population, according to the message.

Also under Obamacare, doctors face increased federal government regulations and reporting requirements, driving up the cost of practicing medicine, the message said.

In January, U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson of Pensacola, Florida, ruled that ObamaCare is unconstitutional, "... because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act (ObamaCare) must be declared void."

The U.S. Justice Department filed its notice of appeal and the case will go to the Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, based in Atlanta, and the battle will eventually reach the Supreme Court.

Obama has actually taken action to repeal some of the provisions of the health care reform bill. He signed into law on Thursday a bill repealing the health care reform law's 1099 tax reporting requirement, the first action to repeal some of the provisions.

Public divisions over the law are obvious and till now Americans still can not even agree what to call it. Supporters call it the Affordable Care Act, a shorter form of its unwieldy official title. But opponents call it Obamacare.

The battle has also moved to the states. Some states have filed lawsuits to nullify the health care reform bill's requirement that most Americans carry health insurance.

Recent Polls show that about one in eight Americans believe they have been personally helped already, well before the provision kicks in in 2014 to cover millions of uninsured.

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