Republican lawmakers should end war against Obamacare


The Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare, may at last prove to be a solid improvement in the U.S. health care system after years of strife.

Signed into law by President Obama in 2010, the law keeps facing criticism from Republican
lawmakers – such as Paul Ryan, who is still trying to repeal it – even though the fight should be over.

Despite surpassing the president’s goal with 7.1 million citizens enrolled and improvements in health care being made, Republican lawmakers are still threatening to abolish the law. 

Nearby Pinellas County Republican David Jolly, for instance, won the district’s
congressional seat with the promise to “fight Obamacare.”

Jolly even pandered to the elderly by parading his mother in campaign commercials, declaring that seniors would be losing out. 

What he failed to mention is that the ACA will save seniors $5.7 billion on prescription drugs in Medicare system. Jolly also ignored the 3.1 million young adults under age 26 who can now gain coverage since the law allows them to remain under their
parent’s insurance.

Jolly is not the only Republican locking targets on the ACA to rile up Republican voters. 

In the Arkansas Senate race, Republican Tom Cotton’s campaign website takes the anti-Obamacare attitude to a new level of absurdity, stating how the ACA is “so bad that Obama doesn’t want it.” 

Granted that campaigns are typically ugly, it seems as if Republican legislators refuse to stop the fight and take part in a law that is looking to
help Americans. 

CNN projects the law will impact 317 million Americans, from the broad scope of
cracking down on insurance companies to the tax credits offered to small businesses for providing
health care. 

The most broad and progressive benefit is that health insurance companies are now required to provide flu shots, mammograms, prostate exams and FDA-approved contraceptives for free, without a co-pay.

Another fuss arises from Republican governors who refuse to expand Medicaid to young adults in their states in compliance with the ACA. Florida is one of the states not expanding Medicaid, as Governor Rick Scott claimed it was too expensive and “just doesn’t make any sense.” 

Though Scott has come around to see how the expansion can help families, he failed to fight for it when it was voted on and rejected by Florida legislature.

Additionally, the ACA’s provision requiring individuals to “get covered” or pay a fine has been to the Supreme Court and was deemed constitutional, surviving numerous attempts to be repealed by House Republicans. Then, there was the widely criticized website launch that had low numbers of enrollments in its first
few weeks. 

Despite its steep climb, the law has proven its worth through its number of enrollments and in the benefits it will make in the health care system. Perhaps now is the time for Republicans to finally put down their fists and instead use their voices to help lead the country rather than divide it. 


Adam Mathieu is a sophomore majoring in studio art.