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Thanks, Democrats: Get ready for another year of double-digit insurance premium increases

Not a single Republican voted for Obamacare — not a single one

(National SentinelHealthcare: As every single member of Congress and their staffs continue to receive even more generous taxpayer-supported subsidies than the relatively few buying health insurance via an Obamacare exchange, the vast majority of Americans will once again have to endure double-digit health insurance premium increases in the coming year.

And we’ve got Democrats to thank for it.

As reported by in the San Francisco Chronicle, the increases will only further inflame passions for repeal, though the comfortably non-afflicted Congress remains all too willing to allow the rest of us to suffer:

Millions of people who buy individual health insurance policies and get no financial help from the Affordable Care Act are bracing for another year of double-digit premium increases, and their frustration is boiling over.

Some are expecting premiums for 2018 to rival a mortgage payment.

What they pay is tied to the price of coverage on the health insurance markets created by the Obama-era law, but these consumers get no protection from the law’s tax credits, which cushion against rising premiums. Instead they pay full freight and bear the brunt of market problems such as high costs and diminished competition.

On Capitol Hill, there’s a chance that upcoming bipartisan hearings by Sens. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., can produce legislation offering some relief. But it depends on Republicans and Democrats working together despite a seven-year health care battle that has left raw feelings on both sides.

“We’re caught in the middle-class loophole of no help,” Sharon Thornton, a hairdresser from Newark, Delaware, told the paper. Her small employer does not provide insurance; she said she’s currently paying about $740 a month in premiums, and is anticipating that her monthly bill next year will rise to about $1,000, a 35 percent increase.

“It’s like buying two new iPads a month and throwing them in the trash,” said Thornton, whose policy carries a deductible of $6,000. “To me, $1,000 a month is my beach house that I wanted to have.”

Or money for a better car. Or for savings to help put a kid through college. Or about a thousand other things that would improve quality of life.

Thornton is far from the only one being hurt by Obamacare. Millions of Americans who do have employer-provided insurance are still paying astronomically high monthly premiums and deductibles.

Meanwhile, the president who gave us this disaster (and lied repeatedly to do so) along with Democrats who voted for it have little to worry about. Their health care is heavily subsidized by taxpayers, so their out-of-pocket is negligible.

Republicans of course now share some of the blame for Obamacare, having failed after seven years of promising to repeal and replace the law with something more akin to a free-market economy. But we can never, ever forget that it was Democrats who gave us Obamacare in the first place, and most of them still refuse to even discuss repeal and replace.

So much for the “party of compassion.”

That didn’t stop the Left-leaning Chronicle from trying to lay some of the blame for the law’s destruction of American healthcare at the GOP’s feet:

It would guarantee coverage regardless of health problems, provide tax credits and other subsidies for people of modest means, and generate competition among insurers to keep premiums in check for all. The overhaul sought to create one big insurance pool for individual coverage in each state, no matter whether consumers bought plans through HealthCare.gov or traditional middlemen such as insurance brokers.

But an influx of sicker-than-expected customers drove up costs for insurers, while many younger, healthier people stayed on the sidelines. Political opposition from Republicans complicated matters by gumming up the law’s internal financial stabilizers for insurers.

That is a bald-faced lie. Not a single Republican voted for Obamacare — not a single one. And let’s no forget that the Obama administration repeatedly tweaked the law — unconstitutionally delaying parts of it while changing others, all for political gain.

There are no Republican fingerprints on Obamacare. So there can’t be any blame assigned to Republicans for the law’s abysmal failure.

But the GOP will be blamed if they fail to deliver on repeal-and-replace. And there is no better time than before the next round of unaffordable insurance premium increases come.

Correction: This story originally stated the source article was published by the San Francisco Chronicle; it was published in the Chronicle but it was an Associated Press story. We regret the sourcing error.

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