HOT BLAST: Obamacare scare stories factchecked
Oct 18, 2013 | 1828 views |  0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Clinical applications counselor Rachael Richardson, left, works with Louis Peters at the Henry J. Austin Health Center, in Trenton, N.J., as he and others fill out papers to sign up for new plans through a health insurance exchange. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)
Clinical applications counselor Rachael Richardson, left, works with Louis Peters at the Henry J. Austin Health Center, in Trenton, N.J., as he and others fill out papers to sign up for new plans through a health insurance exchange. (AP Photo/Mel Evans, File)
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Eric Stern, writing in Salon, reports:

I happened to turn on the Hannity show on Fox News last Friday evening. “Average Americans are feeling the pain of Obamacare and the healthcare overhaul train wreck,” Hannity announced, “and six of them are here tonight to tell us their stories.” Three married couples were neatly arranged in his studio, the wives seated and the men standing behind them, like game show contestants.

As Hannity called on each of them, the guests recounted their “Obamacare” horror stories: canceled policies, premium hikes, restrictions on the freedom to see a doctor of their choice, financial burdens upon their small businesses and so on.

Stern decided to do a little follow-up. What he found was that all the guests had misstated their experiences. What's more, with some research he discovered insurance cost savings for all three couples.

It’s true that we don’t know for sure whether certain ills conservatives have warned about will occur once Obamacare is fully enacted. For example, will we truly have the same freedom to choose a physician that we have now? Will a surplus of insured patients require a scaling back (or “rationing,” as some call it) of provided healthcare services? Will doctors be able to spend as much time with patients? These are all valid, unanswered questions. The problem is that people like Sean Hannity have decided to answer them now, without evidence. Or worse, with fake evidence.

I don’t doubt that these six individuals believe that Obamacare is a disaster; but none of them had even visited the insurance exchange.

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