Tuesday Senator Jim Inhofe delivered the following on the Senate floor:
Mr. President, many Oklahomans have come to me with truly heartbreaking accounts of how Obamacare has impacted them. Their family budgets are taking the hardest hits, both directly with increases in premiums and deductibles and also indirectly by having their work days and week hours cut. In turn, they are also telling me their health care access or quality has not improved, and in some cases has even worsened.
Since the disastrous roll out last fall, my office has been flooded with stories from Oklahomans who found ObamaCare to be one massive broken promise from President Obama. These stories include a woman from Broken Arrow who reported a 20 percent increase in her monthly premiums. A father from Owasso, shared a story of his son and daughter, who serve as missionaries in Indonesia and their healthcare deductibles in the U.S. have more than doubled from $1200 per person to $2600 per person.
One teacher from Copan who teaches adjunct college classes, shared that not only did she have her work hours cut, but she is now paying $950 a month in premiums for health care, with a $6000 deductible. Another teacher from Sallisaw, shared that her deductible increased by $1,000 from last year.
A man from Noble told us that his company modified their health plans to match the ObamaCare requirements outlined by the Department of Health and Human Services. He said these changes cost him a 40 percent increase in his out of pocket expenses and premium costs.
One Tulsa man, with a family of five, who works for a small business shared with us that he is now paying over $4,000 more for insurance than what he paid just a year ago.
This November, a new open enrollment period will begin and at least one state, Virginia, has already reported an astounding 22 percent in increases to one of their insurers’ premium costs for 2015. While my state of Oklahoma has yet to release its numbers, I suspect, and fear, that we could follow.
I continue to oppose Obamacare, and will do everything I can to roll back its devastating effects and ensure that Oklahomans, and all Americans, have truly affordable health care that fits their personal needs in a fiscally responsible manner with the most choices available.