Otter shows 'absence of leadership' on health exchange, says Tea Party Boise

Tea Party Boise says its not too late to stop Gov. Otter's proposal to implement a state-run health insurance exchange under President Obama's Affordable Care Act.

The group is rallying Monday at 1 p.m. at the Capitol and using its January newsletter to promote the event.

"We are disappointed by the governor's willingness to move forward," say Stephen Ackerman and his co-author Bob Neugebauer. "We don't claim his decision was easy, but we do believe more could have been done with other governors to put pressure on Congress and the President over this issue. There are more than 20 states that said they would not move forward with an exchange. Some, like Louisiana, came here and told us why.

"We believe passing this decision to the legislature, while being critical of it is not leadership; it is the absence of leadership It is time to make our voices known to our legislators and our governor about this decision. We have lost a battle, but we can still win the war and stop this legislation from passing."

As of this morning, the newsletter was not yet loaded on the Tea Party Boise website. So, here's the pitch for the rally and the article by Ackerman and Neugebauer.

STATE HEALTH INSURANCE EXCHANGE:

Don’t Fund the Problem; Fund a Solution

Please come to our rally to protest the creation of a state health insurance exchange

Where? On the steps of our state capital When? At 1:00PM on January 21st

Let your representatives know you don’t want them to waste some $77 million of your tax dollars on an open-ended program

REMEMBER THESE WORDS?

“No executive branch department, agency, institution or employee or the state shall provide assistance or resources of any kind to any agency, public official, employee or agent of the federal government to implement or enforce the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”

That was the governor’s executive order when he signed the Idaho Health Insurance Freedom Act in 2010. That act says the citizens of Idaho will not subject themselves to another federal mandate or turn over another part of their life to government control.

WHAT HAPPENED GOVERNOR OTTER?

DON’T FUND THE PROBLEM; FUND A SOLUTION

Dear Friends:

Governor Otter announced Idaho will move forward with creating a state health exchange. This is disappointing. It will require an estimated $77 million to create the exchange and another $10 million per year to run it. This money will either be taken out of the pockets of your fellow Idahoans or will be denied to other government services. Either way, we will all be poorer, and for what? To put a "Made in Idaho" label on something that was designed by the federal government, conforms to new federal rules, and introduces new federal taxes does not appear to be an “Idaho solution.”

We are disappointed by the governor's willingness to move forward. We don't claim his decision was easy, but we do believe more could have been done with other governors to put pressure on Congress and the President over this issue. There are more than 20 states that said they would not move forward with an exchange. Some, like Louisiana, came here and told us why.

We believe passing this decision to the legislature, while being critical of it is not leadership; it is the absence of leadership. It is time to make our voices known to our legislators and our governor about this decision. We have lost a battle, but we can still win the war and stop this legislation from passing.

Steps we need to Take to Stop the State Health Exchange

The governor's statement said two things that are critical for us: One, that "Idaho is opting for a state
based health exchange" ... "subject to legislative approval"; and Two, that "my decision today can be
rescinded if the legislature disagrees or withdrawn by me if circumstances warrant."

1) Call the legislature to either pass a law or otherwise ensure no money goes toward a health exchange. There are some 36 new legislators that were elected to office this year and we need to Call, Write and E-Mail, encouraging them to vote no for funding and the set up of a state healthcare exchange in Idaho.

2) Try to find areas where the Affordable Care Act conflicts with Idaho law and that is backed by Supreme Court decisions in favor of the state. Idaho's healthcare insurance market is dominated by a few companies. In fact, three companies control nearly 80% of the health insurance market. This results in less competition, fewer choices, and higher prices.

3) Get the legislature to open up this market to more competition. Overturn any law that prevents Idahoans from buying across state lines.

Why would we want to continue to FUND THE PROBLEM? The $77 million spent on setting up the new State Healthcare Exchange is not going to solve our healthcare problem. In other words, the money for an exchange will not go to treat one sick or injured person in Idaho. Further, there is no serious evidence it will reduce healthcare premiums on individuals or businesses.

What it is going to do is to continue to limit choices for healthcare, open the door to new federal taxes, and create an entirely new program that will be subject to federal rules. Instead of funding a process, why not fund a solution?

DON’T FUND THE PROBLEM; FUND A SOLUTION

Some Questions and Suggested Solutions to Consider:

Does it make sense to spend money on a program that will not make one person healthier?

Whether you are conservative, liberal, or independent, why spend $77 million on a state health exchange that will not purchase one health insurance policy. The health exchange won’t spend one dollar on healthcare for one child, one employee, one business owner, or one elderly person.

Is it responsible to spend money on something if you don’t know what it will cost down the road? The state health exchange is supposed to be “self-sustaining” by 2015. But, many of the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or “Obamacare”) are not clear. This means we don’t know what they’ll cost.

If people can make their own decisions over all these other insurances, how can anyone argue people cannot make the same decisions over their health insurance? The private insurance market offers people the ability to comparison shop for every type of insurance. Whether it is auto, boat, home, life, or motorcycle, people can compare and make decisions on which insurance best suits them. Allow people to buy across state lines, i.e., outside Idaho. This would help expand competition from the three insurance companies that control 70-79% of Idaho’s health insurance market.

Why should anyone advocate violating state law?

The Affordable Care Act allows people to “choose” to set up an exchange or not. In 2010, the state legislature passed and the governor signed the Idaho Health Insurance Freedom Act, maintaining that no “executive branch department, agency, institution, or [state] employee” shall “provide assistance or resources” to any part of the federal government to implement and enforce the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or “Obamacare”).

How can anyone argue that Idaho has actual control?

There is the argument that if Idaho sets up an exchange, it will maintain control over the implementation of healthcare insurance. Yet, the exchange is designed by the federal government, requires services decided by the federal government, and includes federal taxes.

Why not use part of the $77 million to support the CAT Fund?

This would help pay for healthcare for indigenous populations around our state, is run by the counties, and helps us deal with our own people under our own program.

Prepare for Medicaid Expansion?

Set aside a portion of the projected $77 million for the exchange to prepare for the 24,000 to 37,000 additional Medicaid recipients that will come onto Idaho’s rolls.

Written by Stephen Ackerman; with contributions by Bob Neugebauer

Below are two YouTube videos that deal with the Health Insurance Exchange and Medicaid expansion: 1) Health Insurance Exchange: http://youtu.be/3S8YOWcu_Pg
2) Medicaid Expansion: http://youtu.be/ZqMkrkBRzZA

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Funny that they mention the Executive Order

A large section of the executive order explains that state agencies, departments, etc., can move forward with parts of PPACA if they get the Governor's written consent. I'm guessing if the Governor supports this, he gives consent. Perhaps the Tea Party should have read past the part they agree with.

I do agree with the Tea Party on one thing...the Governor has not shown enough leadership on this. We should have moved forward last year.

Mention of Executive Order

To "becourteous":

I have not only read the entire executive order (2011-03) but also the law passed by the Idaho legislature (Healthcare Freedom Act-House Bill 391) in 2010.

The only way any branch, department or agency of state government can implement any part of the Affordable Care Act is through a "written request" to the governor's office. The executive order further requires certain things to be included in that written request.

Only then can the governor offer "consent," but even that cannot happen without a formal review. And, his consent must be in writing.

Thank you, Steve

Read more here: http://voices.idahostatesman.com/2013/01/09/idahopolitics/otter_shows_absence_leadeship_health_exchange_says_tea_party_boi#comment-437487#storylink=cpy

Thank You Popkey. I wrote

Thank You Popkey.

I wrote the Governor on this issue when I 1st heard what he planned to do. I told him I have been a conservative all of my life and it is the ONLY way I have ever voted and I couldn't believe he planned to go the same way as California, Oregon and Washington. I never heard back from him. I guess I'll have to pull out my Tea party shirt that's been in the closet awhile now and head over to the capital on the 21st and see what the other Patriots have to say about this. :) Thanks again for the article.

CHICKENS! Bawk Bawk bawk bawk....

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Medicare and Medicaid saved my life last year...get a grip on yourselves.

Medicare and Medicaid

First, although I don't know you, I am happy that medical care helped you -- especially if it truly saved your life.

Second, the state health exchange DOES NOT purchase one dollar of healthcare. And yet, it could cost $77 million to implement. I have yet to see a clear definition, blueprint, or structure of what that state health exchange will look like. But, the PPACA mandates it must be "self-sustaining" by 2015.

What if the cost is greater than projected? What if the federal government changes grants, tax credits, etc.? What if the federal government cannot come through on the money? Will money get taken from other state services? That could hurt Idaho's Medicaid, education, prisons, other services?

Third, if we're going to spend upwards of $77 million, let's ACTUALLY buy some healthcare services. The Foundation for Government Accountability has shown how we can cut the cost of Medicaid while offering MORE choice of plans for recipients. Look at their track record in Florida. At least Medicaid buys healthcare services.

Please don't buy into the argument that healthcare CAN ONLY be fixed with the same old government approach. The free market has answers that work. There was a time in this country where you had one type of life insurance policy -- a whole life policy that cost hundreds every month, you had to be young, and go through a physical examination. Most people couldn't afford it.

Now, you can be 60 years old, pick up a phone and get hundreds of thousands of dollars in coverage for $20 or $50 a month -- all without a medical exam. We didn't need an exchange to do that.

Thanks, Steve

First of all, I'm 46. Secondlly, I'm an Oregoian...

Since my hospital stay was in Boise and partly paid by Oregon Medicaid I cannot begin to see what you are talking about. If Idaho took the same route as Oregon already had then you may not have a chip in the buffalo chip toss.

When you tea partiers get your pekoe in gear, let me know. You bore me, honestly.

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.

Unwilling to debate?

Unfortunately, you never explained why it is a good idea to spend $77 Million on a State Health Exchange that WILL NOT purchase one health insurance policy. It WILL NOT buy healthcare for one child, one parent, one person on Medicaid or Medicare, or one employee.

You should engage in debate, not just yell.

Thank you, Steve

P.S. I have advised the Gem State Tea Party and they are much more courteous than you are.

It's YOUR state, run the stupid thing if you wanna. REALLY.

Run along, son.

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.

moving forward

Of course the teabillys are against it. They want no movement or retrograde even more so.

Moving Forward?

Instead of being able to take your money and buy a health insurance policy or healthcare products and services, you want to have government make you walk through a State Health Exchange first?

You think that is progress? It is progress to take $77 million from the taxpayers of this country and spend it on a process TOWARD healthcare, but NOT to purchase one dollar of healthcare? That doesn't sound like progress to me.

Thank you, Steve

Please don't thank yourself. 'Night.

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.

Executive Order 2011-03

To "becourteous":

I have not only read the entire executive order (2011-03) but also the law passed by the Idaho legislature (Healthcare Freedom Act-House Bill 391) in 2010.

The only way any branch, department or agency of state government can implement any part of the Affordable Care Act is through a "written request" to the governor's office. The executive order further requires certain things to be included in that written request.

Only then can the governor offer "consent," but even that cannot happen without a formal review. And, his consent must be in writing.

Thank you, Steve

Abalone!

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Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.