Obamacare, also known as the Affordable Care Act, has never been embraced, or even accepted, by the American people. Indeed Obama spent the majority of his first two years in office – years in which he was backed by a Democrat majority in the House and Senate – pushing the program, with the methods fueling the first scandal of Obama’s presidential career, the firstname.lastname@example.org scandal.
After it passed, the program grew less and less popular. Dozens of lawsuits – at least one of which will probably get to the Supreme Court – sought to modify the law on religious grounds. Multiple companies have cited its provisions as the reason for cutting jobs and hours, and the implementation of the employer mandate has even been delayed because of the strain it would place on small businesses. Insurance premiums have already risen for individuals, and studies have shown that young people would be financially better off paying the fines for having no coverage than purchasing coverage.
Even Union leaders have spoken against the law, saying it would “destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class.” Meanwhile, its backers, like Harry Reid, have said that it would necessarily lead to the creation of a Canada, UK or France-style single payer system, an idea the American people opposes even more strongly.
The government’s response to this opposition and skepticism, however, has not been to reconsider, modify or eliminate the program. Instead, the writers of Obamacare included Section 4002. Section 4002, according to Kent Masterson Brown, creates a fund used for promoting Obamacare. Between 2010 and 2015, the money appropriated increases from $500 million to $2 billion per year.
The “Prevention and Public Health Fund” will “Provide for expanded and sustained national investment in prevention and public health programs to improve health and help restrain the rate of growth in private and public sector health care costs.” It almost admits in this wording that its purpose is to promote the program, though it doesn’t reveal the extent to which this is the case.
According to Brown, this funding has gone to symposiums for journalists, and it’s also gone to media companies like the Washington Post, NBC, Reuters and CBS. In addition, it’s gone to putting promotions of Obamacare on Modern Family, Grey’s Anatomy and other primetime TV shows. It’s also helped to fund non-profit organizations committed to promoting Obamacare.
More traditional uses of promotional funds have also been paid for. $8 million, for instance, has gone to a public relations contract to help increase public support of the program, or in other words, “to convince skeptical – or simply confused – Americans that the ACA is good for them and convince them to enroll in a plan.”
Using taxpayer money to convince citizens to support a partisan agenda is unconscionable and a very dangerous policy. Creating a government program with such funds built into its very structure is insane. Government is meant to represent the people, not lead them at an expense of $2 billion per year.