(CBS News) – A third of Americans without health insurance intend to stay that way, according to a new report. Although the most common reason for doing without coverage is the expense, 70 percent of those planning to stay uninsured did not know about the subsidies afforded under Obamacare that reduce the cost.
The report by Bankrate.com shows that, despite the government’s effort to promote the new health law, also called the Affordable Care Act, many Americans seem unfamiliar with key details of the program.
“This is a staggeringly high percentage,” said Bankrate.com insurance analyst Doug Whiteman. “The government has spent over half a billion dollars promoting the Affordable Care Act, and more than two-thirds of uninsured Americans still don’t know about the subsidies.”
Some 46 percent of those surveyed also were unaware of the March 31 deadline for being insured.
Ignorance about the tax credits ran highest among Republicans and people in the West and South. More than 40 percent of people who identified themselves as Republicans said there are no tax credits to lessen the cost of insurance, compared with 20 percent of Democrats and 33 percent of independents. Slightly more than a third of those in both the West and South say the tax credits don’t exist, compared with 25 percent in the Northeast and just 13 percent in the Midwest.
Some 17 percent said they weren’t getting insurance because they opposed the ACA, making that the second-most common reason cited for skipping coverage. Half of the Republicans who plan to stay uninsured said this was the main reason, compared with only 5 percent of Democrats.
Among those between the ages of 18 and 29, nearly a third said they don’t plan to obtain insurance because they’re healthy and don’t need it. Only 6 percent of respondents between the ages of 30 and 49 said that.
In the report, Deborah Chollet, a health insurance research leader at Mathematica Policy Research, said she thinks part of the problem is that the government focused too much on getting information about Obamacare out to those under the age of the 30.
“Low-income, young families may have been overlooked. They’re probably not spending a lot of time watching television, they never read a newspaper and if they listen to radio it’s probably music in the car,” she is quoted as saying. “In communities of color, people might hear about [Obamacare] in church, but for people who are not attached to a church, I don’t know how they get the information.”
This would be funny if it weren’t so disturbing.
Angela Couloumbis and Craig R. McCoy report for The Philadelphia Inquirer, March 16, 2014, that a 3-year undercover sting operation by the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office captured five state officials on tape accepting money.
All five corrupt officials not only are Democrats, they’re also black.
Yet no one was charged with a crime.
Prosecutors began the sting in 2010 when Republican Tom Corbett was attorney general. After Democrat Kathleen G. Kane took office in 2013, she shut it down, calling the investigation poorly conceived, badly managed, and racist because the sting had targeted African Americans.
Those who favored the sting believe it was a solid investigation that had the potential to capture more corrupt officials. They are outraged at Kane’s allegation that race had played a role in the sting.
Before Kane ended the investigation, prosecutors had amassed 400 hours of audio and videotape that documented at least four city Democrats taking payments in cash or money orders, and in one case a $2,000 Tiffany bracelet, and in exchange for votes or contracts.
The sting made financial pitches to both Republicans and Democrats, but only black Democrats accepted the payments, i.e., bribes.
The investigation’s undercover operative was a black lobbyist, Tyron B. Ali, 40, who agreed to wear a wire and tape the officials to win favorable treatment after his arrest in a $430,000 fraud case. Last fall, the Attorney General’s Office secretly dropped the fraud charges against Ali.
Thomasine Tynesl to r: Thomasine Tynes, Ronald Waters, Vanessa Brown
The officials caught on tape in the sting included:
◾Former Traffic Court Judge Thomasine Tynes, who acknowledged that Ali gave her the bracelet.
◾State Rep. Ronald G. Waters accepted multiple payments totaling $7,650.
◾State Rep. Vanessa Brown took $4,000 in exchange for voting against a bill requiring voters to show identification at the polls. Brown did vote against the bill, as did every other Democrat in the House.
◾State Rep. Michelle Brownlee received $3,500, but said she couldn’t recall taking a bribe.
◾State Rep. Louise Bishop took $1,500, but denied receiving money.
Michelle BrownleeMichelle Brownlee (l); Louise Bishop (r)
None of the five reported receiving gifts or campaign money from Ali on official disclosure forms in recent years. While state law sets no limits on the dollar amount of gifts lawmakers may accept, annual disclosure is required. Under state law, those omissions may be considered false swearing to authorities, a crime with a penalty of up to one year in jail.
When Kathleen Kane became the state’s first Democrat and first female attorney general on Jan. 15, 2013, her staff conducted a review of the sting operation, in partnership with FBI agents. In the end, she chose not to pursue it, insisting that the case was dropped because it was flawed, not because she was reluctant to bring political-corruption cases.
Kane said one reason was that prosecutors in the case had issued orders to target “only members of the General Assembly’s Black Caucus” and to ignore “potentially illegal acts by white members of the General Assembly.” According to Kane, the lead agent in the case Claude Thomas said he had been told to target members of the Legislative Black Caucus.
Lead prosecutor Frank G. Fina vehemently denies that race was a factor. In fact, Ali and lead agent Thomas are both black.
Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, a Democrat, also denounced Kane’s suggestion that Fina or Thomas acted improperly: ”The notion that they would target anyone based on race is ridiculous. I am confident they are not racist, and it is regrettable that the Attorney General would casually throw around such an explosive accusation.”
Sources with knowledge of the sting said Ali had approached a wide range of officials, from both parties, black and white. In time, the sources said, Ali didn’t even have to reach out to elected officials. They called him.
H/t WND and FOTM’s dee
I don’t wanna say Barack Obama is a stuttering clusterf*** of a miserable failure, but even the NYT and scofflaw gun criminal David Gregory are having trouble covering for him.
Here’s Gregory berating robotic White House lackey Dan Pfeiffer about what a crappy job his boss has done and how unpopular he’s become. If you’ve ever endured the lies of Pfeiffer, or any other Democrat who has spoken in public for the past 5 years, his answer won’t surprise you.
“The president will be an asset in every way possible to help these candidates.” I’m sure the Republicans agree.
Hey, if these guys are on the right side of jobs and the economy, why are jobs and the economy in such a mess? Oh, that’s right: “Republican obstructionism.” Cue laugh track.