Explaining health care to the Koch brothers

Updated
 

Since the Affordable Care Act became law, its opponents on the right have spent about $400 million on television ads attacking it, while allies of “Obamacare” have invested about $75 million in support of the law. It helps explain why so many Americans continue to disapprove of the law, despite backing its component parts – the public has been told, repeatedly, to hate it.

The imbalance is poised to get worse. The Koch brothers’ Americans For Prosperity is launching this spot as part of a new $1 million campaign.

For those who can’t watch clips online, the spot features a mother of a special-needs child. “If we can’t pick our own doctor, how do I know my family’s going to get the medical care we need?” she asks. “And what am I getting in exchange for higher premiums and a smaller paycheck? Can I really trust the folks in Washington with my family’s health care? I think we all deserve some answers.”

On that last point, I agree – answers are great. In fact, if the Koch brothers and the person in this spot are eager to learn more about federal health care law, then let’s fill in the gaps.

* “If we can’t pick our own doctor….” Good news: the Affordable Care Act doesn’t stop you from picking your own doctor. There are private insurers that discourage use of “out-of-plan” physicians, but that’s not a part of “Obamacare.” For Americans For Prosperity to suggest otherwise is obviously dishonest.

* “What am I getting in exchange for higher premiums….” The vast majority of Americans won’t see higher premiums, so the “question,” such as it is, misleads. But for those who will see an increase, as Sarah Kliff explained, they’ll get quite a bit: “So, what do consumers get in return? For one thing, insurance companies will have to accept their enrollment no matter what. An applicant with a preexisting condition, for example, gets to sign up for a plan that they might not currently qualify for. Older Americans get limits on how much insurers can charge them; women will no longer get charged a higher premium than men. There are certain benefits, too, that health insurance plans are required to cover.”

* ” Can I really trust the folks in Washington with my family’s health care?” The implication is that federal officials will control families’ care, which isn’t true in the slightest.

So, Americans For Prosperity, now you know. If you’re looking for answers, you could have just asked, rather than spend $1 million on a misleading attack ad.

Affordable Care Act and Obamacare

Explaining health care to the Koch brothers

Updated