Meet Sue Klinkhamer.
She worked in the office of Representative Bill Foster, a Democrat from Illinois. Her boss voted for Obamacare and she was a proud defender of Obamacare, too.
“I spent two years defending Obamacare. I had constituents scream at me, spit at me and call me names that I can’t put in print. The congressman was not re-elected in 2010 mainly because of the anti-Obamacare anger. When the congressman was not re-elected, I also (along with the rest of our staff) lost my job. I was upset that because of the health care issue, I didn’t have a job anymore but still defended Obamacare because it would make health care available to everyone at, what I assumed, would be an affordable price.”
First, a quick point on civility. Whether it’s Customer Service for Verizon or a staffer working for an elective official, we must treat everyone with Christian dignity and respect. So, I’m sorry that Sue had people spit at her or call her names.
But Sue isn’t defending Obamacare anymore. She noted that President Obama had promised many times: “If you like your health plan, you will keep it.”
She now knows the truth. She admitted: “I have now learned that I was wrong. Very wrong.”
When voters fired her boss in the 2010 elections, she had to get another job and that meant she had to shop for health care, too. Three years ago, she got a plan that cost $225 a month with a $2,500 deductible. But then her health care company sent a letter a few weeks ago.
“Blue Cross,” she said, “stated my current coverage would expire on Dec. 31, and here are my options: I can have a plan with similar benefits for $647.12 [or] I can have a plan with similar [but higher] pricing for $322.32 but with a $6,500 deductible.”
She went on, “Blue Cross also tells me that if I don’t pick one of the options, they will just assume I want the one for $647. … Someone please tell me why my premium in January will be $356 more than in December?” …
“And I was excited that previously uninsured people could now get insurance on the open market. But this is not affordable to me.”
You can argue facts and figures all day long. You can mention that 500,000 Californians will lose their current healthcare insurance plans. And you can often get into a shouting match about this fact and that fact.
Sometimes it’s better to simply tell a story that brings the policy fight to life.
And while I doubt I’ll agree with her 100%, Sue Klinkhamer has a story to tell.
Obamacare is driving up the cost of health care for millions of Americans, including people like Sue Klinkhamer who were working full-time to get this horrible legislation passed.