I didn’t watch the GOP responses to the SOTU speech last Tuesday — there were four to choose from — but apparently the official response was given by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers who told the heart-rending story of “Bette in Spokane” who was devastated by the news that her health insurance cost would skyrocket because of Obamacare.
The local paper did a little digging, as did Paul Krugman. It turns out that Bette was misinformed, as was Ms. McMorris Rodgers.
Sure enough, when a local newspaper, The Spokesman-Review, contacted Bette Grenier, it discovered that the real story was very different from the image Ms. McMorris Rodgers conveyed. First of all, she was comparing her previous policy with one of the pricier alternatives her insurance company was offering — and she refused to look for cheaper alternatives on the Washington insurance exchange, declaring, “I wouldn’t go on that Obama website.”
Even more important, all Ms. Grenier and her husband had before was a minimalist insurance plan, with a $10,000 deductible, offering very little financial protection. So yes, the new law requires that they spend more, but they would get far better coverage in return.
Despite the best efforts of the Republicans, including everything from trash-talking governors denying Medicare expansion (which does far more harm to their citizens than the worst nightmare of Obamacare), dozens of attempts to repeal the law, and probable involvement in some quarters at actually maliciously disabling the website, they’ve been unable to stop it. So now they’re just making shit up about it being a failure.
The point is not just that the Republicans are both wrong and misleading when they tell us that Obamacare is not working, they’re desperate enough to come up with examples of the supposed failure that are easily proven to be failures themselves.