Marco Rubio, the southern Republican star hailing from Florida, is not a fan of Obamacare. But, neither is any other Republican, so that’s to be expected from a party advocating for other alternatives. He thinks health care reform should be based entirely on “market ideas.” To his credit, he has not only talked the talk, but also put his money where his mouth is, while others just talk abut what they could do. This would be a good thing, if only it made any sense.
To date, his health care “alternative” in Florida has only had an entire 80 people sign up, since last year. Yes, 80; not 80 thousand. To put this in perspective, Obamacare covers 1.6 million people in Florida alone.
The exchange he advocated for, Florida Health Choices, was a plan of his he had been envisioning for some time, since 2008. He was hoping on it being a massive success so he could further dismiss Obamacare as being a big waste of tax payer dollars. He has staked a career on it, being such an opponent of Obamacare. He doesn’t like the idea of government giving out subsidies to undeserving people so they can afford insurance, and he thinks the market will solve this problem instead.
Here’s the problem, Rubio. Your healthcare plan has cost Florida $2.4 million dollars since your legislation was passed in 2008. And, you only have 80 signups? This has been such an embarrassment for Rubio that he doesn’t even talk about “Rubiocare” in public anymore. In fact, he has almost entirely discarded his failed idea, and completely left it out of his campaign’s vision on how to repeal and replace the federal law. He surely didn’t mention it in his Fox News op-ed entitled, “My three part plan for the post-Obamacare era.”
Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, says Rubio’s recent silence on this doesn’t surprise him:
It makes sense that he doesn’t talk about it right now. The notion of promoting coverage in a way that does not enable people to get one of the significant benefits of the Affordable Care Act …is really harmful and would cause millions of people to be far worse off than they are today.
But, CEO of Florida Health Choices, Rose Naff is defending Rubiocare:
What’s in Obamacare is neither free-market or truly an exchange. It is unfortunate that this disastrous health care law is impacting the Florida Health Choices program, which is exactly the kind of consumer-based health care solution Americans are looking for.
Mrs. Naff says that enrollment is gaining traction. Her exact words in a recent interview were:
I know the numbers seem small, but it’s been steady.
Here are the facts: By the Feb. 15th enrollment deadline for Obamacare, Florida Health Choices had only signed up 56 individuals, and at the time of this writing it had only gained 24 more. This must be her idea of “steady.”
Before you start bashing Mrs. Naff, at least she has the balls to stand up for a health care exchange she is involved in. Rubio, the brains behind the operation, and the homo-sapiens who’s supposed to have actual, physical balls, abandoned it once he realized it would hurt his presidential campaign to talk about it any further.
The next time Republicans start trashing Obamacare, just mention Rubiocare. By this time next month, it should have well over a hundred signups and by the end of the year, at least several hundred. If Rubio wins his party’s nomination, he’s going to have a tough time explaining this, but at least the debates will be funny.