ObamaCare birthday nothing to cheer

First Posted: 3/28/2014

Anniversaries are usually supposed to be a cause for celebration. Unfortunately, this past week’s anniversary was more like a bad rendition of “Groundhog Day” than it was an excuse for balloons and streamers.

Sunday, March 23 marked the four-year anniversary of President Obama signing ObamaCare into law. Although Nancy Pelosi was comfortable “passing the law to find out what’s in it,” we all knew this would be a disastrous litany of broken promises and empty rhetoric. Four years later, our deepest fears have unfortunately proved to be true.

On top of stopping job creation for millions of Americans who are out of work and creating a part-time economy, this harmful law is forcing hard-working individuals and families to deal with rising health care costs, restricted access, and canceled insurance plans. Just last week, WTVD in Raleigh reported that in response to the law’s 30-hour work week definition, our state’s public and private employers are considering cutting employee hours just to stay afloat and avoid Obamacare’s burdensome mandates. In Greenville, WITN reports that the same ObamaCare mandate is causing hours to be cut for as many as 200 North Carolina teachers.

The pain this law is causing for millions of Americans is tragic. It is no surprise that with less than 10 days left to sign up, the administration was nowhere near the original enrollment numbers they needed and decided to once again unilaterally delay the deadline in order to provide themselves political cover. This marks more than 30 times that the administration has delayed its own law. The American people deserve basic fairness and genuine accountability from their government, not self-serving executive overreach that only proves this law is unworkable and in need of a permanent delay for everyone.

Additionally this week, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases challenging the constitutionality of ObamaCare’s contraception mandate. This mandate is a blatant violation of our fundamental right to religious freedom. While President Obama has proven entirely comfortable granting delays and exemptions where it is politically convenient for him to do so, he refuses to grant the same leniency to those whose conscience is violated by this unconstitutional mandate. I hope the court will stand up for the First Amendment and demand the administration to show respect for the Constitution and for people’s faiths.

It’s past time that everyone admit that Obamacare is an utter failure. Instead of digging in their heels and trying to force this train wreck on the American people, the administration should scrap it and start over by working with Republicans to advance patient-centered reforms that ensure quality, affordable health care. I joined my House colleagues in proposing The American Health Care Reform Act (H.R. 3121) — a patient-centered system that strengthens the doctor-patient relationship, reduces cost, increases access, and allows American businesses to grow again.

I will continue to do everything in my power to defund, repeal and replace ObamaCare.

Richard Hudson, a Concord Republican, represents the 8th District in the U.S. House, which includes most of Robeson County.