Langevin says president ‘could have been more clear’
President Obama is being taken to task by many for problems associated with the rollout of his Affordable Care Act, particularly for people who are losing their health insurance plans after he said they wouldn’t.
Now some Rhode Islanders, including leaders of the Rhode Island Tea Party, are asking how much members of Rhode Island’s Congressional delegation knew about the pitfalls of the health care law even as they supported it.
I’ve reached out to all members of the state’s Congressional delegation to get that answer. So far, only Rep. James Langevin has responded. Langevin, a Democrat, released a statement through spokeswoman Meg Fraser on Tuesday.
“The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to provide stronger consumer protections, like free preventative care, no annual or lifetime insurance limits, maternity coverage and a host of other benefits,” he said. “For constituents with health insurance plans that meet those standards, they are able to keep their current coverage if they so choose. Insurance plans that do not meet those standards, however, are not able to continue providing coverage, which has led to plans being dropped.
“I understand how upsetting that is for constituents affected, and I do believe the president could have been more clear when explaining that portion of the health care reform law, but ultimately, the goal is the same – to provide better health insurance and better health care to all Americans.”
Did Langevin know that the whole story wasn’t being told when he was pushing for passage of Obamacare? Did he or didn't he know that some insurance plans would end up being dropped?
“The congressman understood that the Affordable Care Act set minimum standards with which insurers would have to comply. How they came into compliance was left to the insurers themselves,” said Fraser in an email. “Some previous insurance policies, particularly those on the individual market, have typically been bare bones policies with benefits that are too sparse to insure against financial ruin. Fortunately, in Rhode Island, most of the insurance products already offered in the individual market provide robust consumer protections and are not being canceled.”