GOP demands we defund Obamacare to stop abortion provision that’s an urban myth

What’s most telling about the far-right running today’s Republican party is the lies.  Whether it’s Sarah Palin claiming that health care form created “death panels” (it didn’t), or now GOP Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) claiming that Obamacare includes a $1 abortion surcharge that every American has to pay (it doesn’t), Republicans learned long ago, sadly, that their best argument on any issue is a lie.

And you’d think that, in a normal person, a normal political party, the fact that your most effective way of winning over public opinion isn’t the truth of your convictions, and of your positions, but rather a lie, would give them pause.  But you’d be wrong.

Tim_Huelskamp

That’s “Congressman Liar,” to you.

Ever since the demise of the Soviet Union, the Republican party has fallen and can’t get up. Hell, a lot of them even like Putin nowadays, at least since he’s anti-gay too.

But from issues ranging from the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare), to education (the klan was a force for good), to global warming, to overall science (bicycles cause pollution) and abortion (masturbating fetuses come to mind), the Republicans have given up on the truth.  That’s why GOP Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) continues to lie about this bizarre assertion that Obamacare includes a $1 abortion surcharge, because Huelskamp has realized that his constituents are too smart for the truth.  So he lies to them.  Oh, and it is a lie.  It’s such a lie that Politifact calls the claim “ridiculous”:

politifact_false_meterThe claim that the Obama administration has issued rules for “$1 abortions in ObamaCare” is ridiculous; the administration has simply set a floor for how much money per month of the premiums paid by those who have chosen plans that include abortion must be placed in a segregated account in order to make sure that there’s enough money available to pay for abortion services incurred by people enrolled in that plan.

The bigger charge — that the Obama health care law “requires all persons enrolled in insurance plans that include elective abortion coverage to pay a separate premium from their own pockets to fund abortion” — is also incorrect.

The provision in question only affects people who purchase insurance plans that cover abortion and who do so on the exchanges — a much narrower group than the claim suggests. And people who make such purchases will be paying their private dollars into abortion coverage accounts voluntarily. Despite some puzzling wording, ultimately the law allows for full disclosure of its abortion rules at the most obvious time, when someone is signing up for coverage. On balance, we rate this claim False.

But keep in mind, we’re dealing with a political party that refuses to acknowledge the age of the earth, lest it affect their presidential chances with the flat-earth society that runs their party (Marco Rubio recently claimed that the age of the earth is “one of the great mysteries” – it’s really not, the earth is 4.5bn years old).

But health care reform is where the GOP’s lies shine brightest.  Let’s revisit a few, from Politifact:

Claim:The national health care reform is “a government takeover of health care.”
Ruling: Pants On Fire

This claim was tapped as our 2010 Lie of the Year. The health care law gives the federal government a larger role in the health insurance industry, but it relies overwhelmingly on the private market. The reform is projected to increase the number of citizens with private health insurance.

Claim:The health care law constitutes the largest tax increase ever.
Ruling: Pants On Fire

The health care law might crack the Top 10. But tax increases approved by Ronald Reagan in 1982 and Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968 were the largest in modern times and each was about twice the size. The largest increase, passed during World War II, was 10 times greater.

Claim:”Death panels” of bureaucrats will decide if seniors and the disabled are worthy of health care.
Ruling: Pants On Fire

This claim was tapped as our 2009 Lie of the Year. The amped-up falsehood started after an early draft of the bill sought to allow Medicare to pay for doctor visits in which patients discussed end-of-life care, such as living wills. No panels, no judgment on “worthiness,” no decisions on care.

Claim:An independent payment advisory board created by the health care law “can ration care and deny certain Medicare treatments.”
Ruling: Pants On Fire

Pat Boone sang this as the front man in ads from the 60 Plus Association. The law creates a 15-member Independent Payment Advisory Board to suggest ways to limit Medicare’s spending growth. Congress can overrule the board, which makes no decisions about individual care. It is specifically forbidden from recommending rationing of care, reducing benefits, raising premiums or cost-sharing or alter eligibility for Medicare.

Claim: The Affordable Care Act contains “a series of slush funds, set up to stay on the books automatically, with little or no oversight.”
Ruling: Pants On Fire

Merriam-Webster defines a “slush fund” as “an unregulated fund often used for illicit purposes.” The health care bill provides several pools of money that the secretary of health and human services can use for programs specifically defined by the law. And Congress has the power to oversee the bill’s implementation.

Claim: The health care law “slapped Ohio small businesses with a $500 billion tax increase.”
Ruling: Pants on Fire.

PolitiFact found that the $500 billion figure was a fair number for total revenue raised nationally by the 2010 health care law — including taxes and various other fees and revenue enhancements — as estimated by the Congressional Budget Office in December 2009. Applying the national number to just the tax share of one segment of one state was preposterous.

A simple point really says it all.  The GOP’s most effective argument against health care reform has been the non-existent “death panels.”  And who came up with that lie?  Sarah Palin, who basically serves as the Republican party’s own in-house death panel – whatever she touches, loses.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • Mary

    Liar, liar, there is an abortion surcharge attached to each monthly premium of all insurance policies.. I read it in the bill before it was passed into law, and in the HHS regulations, and in the executive order giving the HHS regulations regarding the surcharge :the force of law”. The law says that the insurance companies may not tell or call attention to the abortion surcharge when people are buying their policies, but may give them an aggregate amount when stating the premium. This is a very crooked way of mandating that each American must “voluntarily” pay to murder unborn US citizens without using “taxpayer” money , It is bogus and I do not think anyone should buy or sign up for this ACA.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    Getting a little desperate, aren’t you?

  • Phil

    You are the one lying, Aravosis

  • Shan

    Is Huelskamp so defective that he doesn’t even know the laws in his own state? There IS no abortion coverage in Kansas, not in private plans, not in the exchanges, and not for government employees.

  • Hue-Man

    I agree. Imagine if some of the $50 billion/year of domestic snooping was used to actually save some of the 50,000 people who die every year! (That’s more than one 9/11 every day…) Sadly, the insurance companies have bought all the votes they need to stay in business.

  • gratuitous

    I suppose having some million-dollar “journalist” say “That’s not true” when Huelskamp pops off with his lies is just too much to ask of our Fourth Estate. Between teevee appearances, cocktail parties, hobnobbing with their subjects and general social climbing, earning that fat paycheck from their corporate overlords just doesn’t leave time for so-called “facts” or even having a little compendium of the running lies.

  • ComradeRutherford

    Their targeting of ACORN is a prime example.

    The law states that all voter registration cards MUST be turned in to the state, no matter how obviously fraudulent. The GOP destroyed ACORN because they DID follow the law…

  • http://www.americablog.com/ Naja pallida

    It should be noted that none of the things you mention will actually be fixed with the Affordable Care Act. People will still be going bankrupt, because having insurance is no guarantee you won’t. By Obama’s own admission, tens of millions of people will still have no access to care. Health insurance companies will still continue to do everything they can to deny claims. Republican controlled states will continue to be the worst for all levels of health care, intentionally.

  • Hue-Man

    An Ugly Truth about American health care – it features the most widespread and brutal rationing of medical services anywhere in the developed world. 50,000 Americans die every year because they can’t get access to medical care. 50 million are denied medical insurance (or 75 million according to some estimates post-Great Recession). Every year, millions of Americans have to choose personal bankruptcy in hopes they can stay alive.

    Health care rationing is worst in TeaParty/GOP districts and states. The question for their political representatives should be: How many Americans that you are supposed to represent did you kill this month through rationing their health care?

  • http://www.americablog.com/ Naja pallida

    You forgot the key part of that lie: have Fox Noise repeat it ad nauseum. And constantly question why other “news” sources haven’t reported the lie, while claiming to be the only organization with the “courage” to tell you about it. Eventually, a limp-spined company like CNN falls for it, and repeats the lie… thus creating an endless circle of “sources report”, lending a false sense of legitimacy to what was nothing but a fabrication in the first place. This cycle has happened time and time again.

  • http://www.americablog.com/ Naja pallida

    They started off trying to be truthful, but they quickly got accused of being partisan when 90% of what they were pointing out were Republican lies. So in order to seem more balanced, they’ve grasped at every straw they could find to report on Democrats, and waffle on Republican lies, instead of just calling things the way they actually are. Effectively flushing their credibility down the toilet.

  • Rambie

    Douglas01, I wasn’t arguing with your statement, I was agreeing with you. :)

    I agree that the Dems haven’t been dispelling the lies and promoting the facts well enough. But that’s not a new condition either.

  • ArthutH

    One gets the idea that if members on Congress had somebody like Bud Abbott standing behind them ready to slap them on the back of their heads and scream “Talk sense, Costello!” every time they said something nonsensical, the members of the Republican right wing would end up so punch drunk they’d only stagger around repeatedly babbling, “Tell me about the rabbits, George W.”

  • ComradeRutherford

    I saw Politifact as a far-right wing operation from it’s inception. I don’t know when they’ve ever told the truth about their own lying…

  • ComradeRutherford

    Standard GOP procedure for decades has been to make up a lie, threaten ‘libs’ with death for not believing the lie, and then using Big Government to act upon that lie in order to harm millions of Americans.

  • douglas01

    It’s not the GOP I’m concerned about, it’s the ordinary uninformed citizen that just hears the GOP side and with nothing to counter it falls for the lies.

  • http://www.americablog.com/ Naja pallida

    Politifact has turned themselves into little more than a Republican apologist site, it’s hard to take their word for much of anything anymore, even if Huelskamp is obviously a psychotic liar.

  • Whitewitch

    I actually think the love the fact that their lies have more power than the truth. It is an odd world – when a lie is more powerful than truth…..

  • caphillprof

    But, one does not see the Obama White House nor the Democratic Party running ads to promote the truth of Obamacare or to offset the lies. Lying works when it is all one hears.

  • Rambie

    The GOP has been using lies to get elected and to start wars that they wouldn’t know the truth if it hit them in the face.

  • lmsinca

    Nice to have all the lies in one place………….thanks

  • douglas01

    A lie told often enough becomes the truth. Therein lays the problem. The Republicans are lying through their teeth but the Democrats are doing nothing to expose the lies and nail the Republicans as liars.

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