Dems’ Obamacare Argument: It’s Too Expensive, So Everyone Should Have To Buy It

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | March 22, 2012 | 5:13 PM EDT

Democrats are trying to justify government health care mandates by making the case that, if some people can’t afford something, everyone else should be forced to buy it for them so that it’ll be “free” for everyone.

Claim: Birth control’s too expensive for some women, so health insurers should have to cover the full cost for all women

At a hearing held by Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke made headlines by claiming that birth control is too expensive for students, so health insurers have to cover the full cost for everyone.

"Forty percent of the female students at Georgetown Law reported to us that they struggled financially as a result of this policy (Georgetown student insurance not covering contraception), Fluke claimed.

"Without insurance coverage, contraception, as you know, can cost a woman over $3,000 during law school," Fluke told the hearing.

The solution, Democrats say, is to mandate coverage, even at institutions that have a moral objection.

Claim: Women spend a billion dollars more on health care, so Obamacare should even things out

In terms of health care, women will become “first-class citizens” as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), popularly known as Obamacare, according to Rep.  Jackie Speier (D-Calif.).

“American women have been second-class citizens when it comes to health care. In fact, women pay a billion dollars more per year for health care than do men,” Rep. Speier claimed at a press conference.

“But with the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act, starting in 2014, no longer will women be second-class citizens,” she said.

“We will attain the position of first-class citizens in this country because no longer can there be gender discrimination in the providing of health care.”

Translation: It’s not fair that women spend more, so everyone should have to chip in and share the cost.

Claim: Sterilizations should be “affordable,” too

Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D.-Ill.) defends the government mandate that all college-age women with insurance plans should be able to get free sterilization:

“This isn’t about promoting sterilization,” she says of the regulation that guarantees free sterilizations. “No one -- there aren’t college girls lining up to become sterilized because they feel like it. And we’re talking about medical procedures.”

“[T]he reason for these regulations is to protect the health of women, women of all ages, so that they can afford to get the preventive care that they need,” she says.

The argument: We’re not promoting sterilization; we’re just making it free.

“Free,” in all these cases, actually means “subsidized” – by all the other people who pay health care insurance premiums.

The bottom line: Democrats are defending their mandates by using the premise that, if some people can’t afford something – even something typically optional, like birth control or sterilization – the government can, and should, force other people to pick up the tab for everyone to have it.

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