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Attorney Robert Henneke talks with the media after arguing for repealing the Affordable Care Act, also better known as Obamacare, outside the John Minor Wisdom U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals courthouse in New Orleans, July 9, 2019. Louisiana is one of 17 states asking the federal courts to declare Obamacare unconstitutional.

I appreciate your attempt to be seemingly reasonable in your editorial regarding the Affordable Care Act. However, you miss many important points.

First, the abrupt beginning of Obamacare was not good for patients either. When the law went into effect, 4.7 million people lost their health care plans. It is also easy to forget, after years of premium increases, that the promise to save the average family $2,500 in annual premiums never happened. In fact, from 2008 to 2017, annual premiums for a family increased by over $7,500 a year and premiums have continued to increase.

You may have also forgotten that the alleged reduction in overall health care costs promised by Obamacare never came to fruition. I would also like to remind you that Obamacare was supposed to solve the problem of access to health insurance, yet there are still over 25 million Americans who do not have health insurance.

Did you also forget that we did not get to keep our doctors either?

While it is understandable that you are clinging to the legacy of a president and ideology (an ever-growing government with no real checks and balances), the truth remains Obamacare delivered on very few promises and health care access and costs have not improved for a large segment of Americans.

Your solution is to trap Americans in this failed system. Or, perhaps, you are hoping that the health care system gets so expensive and so bloated with regulations that a frustrated public will finally vote for socialized medicine. Either way, you are out of touch. The public does not want socialized medicine. They want reform that will bring down the heavy burden of costs and they want to give affordable access to their neighbors.

In fact, that is what I have already offered. It has been accepted, with bipartisan support, and it is now in law. You do a disservice to your readers to once again pick-and-choose the truth you choose to tell them by not recognizing the state law now in place to pick up on, and improve, Obamacare when and if it is ruled unconstitutional.

Yes, change will bring challenges. However, we have demonstrated here in Louisiana, with that passage of legislation I proposed in 2019, that there is a market-based alternative.

The alternative I proposed has demonstrated the ability to give people more health care options, more access, and lower costs. This alternative also provides for the very few things people liked about Obamacare: no lifetime caps, coverage of preexisting conditions, and coverage for adult children.

We should all recognize that the federal courts have already ruled the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. The U.S. Supreme Court would be overturning a lower court ruling should they rule otherwise.

If the editors of The Advocate want to be progressives, I would suggest embracing progress.


Louisiana attorney general

Baton Rouge

Our Views: Abrupt end of Obamacare not in the interests of patients