No matter what you want to say about the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare), the one thing you can’t deny is that it has dramatically reduced the number of Americans who don’t have health insurance. Well, unless you’re an Obamacare truther like one Republican legislator:
Over the past several years, several major surveys have all been delivering the same conclusion: The number of uninsured Americans is falling. One congressman, though, doesn’t believe it.
In an interview with the Trussville Tribune earlier this week, freshman Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL) declared that, on net, no additional people have gained insurance since the passage of Obamacare. “I’m not sure that’s true that more people are covered,” Palmer declared after the host noted that more people have health care today than in 2010. “There’s just about as many people uninsured now as there were before the Affordable Care Act.”
No, there aren’t. The old cliche is that you’re entitled to your own opinions but not to your own facts, a lesson Palmer seems not to have learned.
On that front, analysts agree that the law has been a remarkable success. When Obamacare’s insurance exchanges were first implemented in late 2013, the uninsured rate stood at 18 percent. According to Gallup, that rate has fallen every quarter since then, and currently clocks in one-third lower at 11.9 percent.
That means millions of people have health insurance now that didn’t have it before. You could try and argue that it isn’t worth it, that there are other ways to achieve the same thing, or any number of other things. But to just pretend that it’s not the case is beyond absurd.