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The choice with Prop. 2: Free market or socialized medicine

Guest Opinion

Guest Opinion

Guest Opinion


Jim Chmelik

With Proposition 2, Idahoans are faced with a clear choice with respect to their health care needs and health insurance: socialized medicine or the free market. The choice is simply either a command and control top down federal government and state agencies making these choices for you, or you being in charge yourself. And if you believe for one moment the snake oil the Democrat Party is selling with a yes on Prop. 2, I have a bridge in Arizona I would like to sell you.

I will make a prediction that expanded Medicaid will not save Idahoans one red cent as forecasted by prominent Democrats in Idaho County. They completely ignore the reality that all we are doing is transferring the burden to our federal government that is $21.6 trillion in debt and saddled with another $115 trillion in unfunded liabilities. Whether as Idahoans or citizens of the United States, we still pay the bill.

We only have to look to the current rates of increases from the debacle that is Obamacare to realize the truth. Over the next ten years expanded Medicaid is expected to add 1 trillion dollars to the national debt; and this is a best guess scenario. To further understand the underestimation of this “best guess,” we need only to look to the 2014 Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projected Medicaid expansion cost. In 2014, the CBO projected that Medicaid expansion would cost the federal government $42 billion in 2015; that number was low by a mere 62 percent. What is an additional 62 percent of $1 trillion?

In Idaho alone, it is estimated that Obamacare’s expanded Medicaid would add more than $4.7 billion to the national debt over the next 10 years. Remember this is an estimate. For those states that have chosen expanded Medicaid, the cost has been much higher.

They say that the federal government will pay 90 percent and the state will pay 10 percent. These were the same promises that were made when Medicaid was originally sold to the states. It eventually became a 70 percent / 30 percent split. Given the current shambles of the federal debt, how is it going to maintain this 90/10 shared responsibility? It is not a matter of if, but when we return to this split; and when we do the numbers are not pretty for Idahoans. You will either have to slash all statewide budgets or cut expanded Medicaid funding to balance the state books. Or you could massively raise taxes on Idahoans. Why would we set ourselves up for failure?

Some also tried to say there is a contraception controversy. There is no contraception controversy there; it is an abortion controversy. He [Jim Rehder, Oct. 3 guest opinion] talks of approximate premature deaths; but does he consider abortions as premature deaths? In 2016 there were 1,289 abortions in Idaho. These numbers are real and Medicaid expansion will fund abortions in Idaho.

Do we look on impassively at the hard truths before us or accept the failed ideologies under the cloak of political correctness? Idahoans have a clear choice Nov 6th: the free market or socialized medicine.


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