- (Photo: Reuters/Larry Downing)
With two months until the Affordable Care Act's health care exchanges are scheduled to open, opponents of the law are taking to the airwaves to advise the uninsured to forgo signing up for health insurance.
One such example includes syndicated radio host Twila Brase who launched the "Refuse to Enroll" campaign in the beginning of July on her daily radio show "Health Freedom Minute," which is carried on more than 350 radio stations around the country.
"I don't think the law can be repealed until we have another president," said Brase, president and co-founder of Citizens' Council for Health Freedom. "I do believe the law will go into effect, but that doesn't mean it has to be successfully implemented."
"Contrary to popular belief, non-enrollment in the exchanges does not result in any penalties; fines are only for failure to be insured," Brase added, who failed to mention that many of the currently uninsured cannot afford insurance premiums, thus placing them at risk of being fined for something they currently cannot afford should they look for insurance outside the health care exchanges.
Brase's organization claims the law will hinder consumer's choices while also increasing the cost of health insurance. However, the Congressional Budget Office previously issued a report detailing that states who participate in the exchanges will see a drop in premiums.
Additionally, the federal government placed a 10 percent cap on insurance premiums increases while requiring proof from insurance companies justifying a reason should they feel the need to increase rates more than 10 percent.
The center piece of the legislation is what's called health care exchanges. These exchanges are online marketplaces where consumers can purchase health insurance from several different providers depending on price and specifics of the plan.
The ACA allows states to decide if they want the federal government to run the exchanges or if they would rather run the exchanges themselves. However, states forgoing participating in the exchanges will miss out on hundreds of millions of federal dollars.
At last count there are 25 states who have declared that they will opt out of the health care exchanges which will shift the burden of subsidizing insurance for those states' uninsured residents to the taxpayers, given that those who are not covered by Medicaid expansion will in many cases be eligible for maximum cost assistance when purchasing insurance on the exchange.
Ultimately, those opposed to the ACA deem it an abuse of federal power and something that the country simply cannot afford to go through with.
"We look at the law as being unconstitutional because it's a government takeover of health care, so we want to make it difficult for the law to function as its proponents want it to," Brase said.
While opponents express their concerns in relation to the ACA, proponents of the law are focused on providing affordable health insurance to millions of currently uninsured Americans.
"Obamacare will provide millions of families with large tax credits to help make health care more affordable for them, and the penalty will only be leveled against those Americans who choose not to purchase insurance even though they are able to afford it," Tara Culp-Ressler, of the website ThinkProgress, previously wrote.