From Ed Martin:
Like so many things progressives in government do, a program that is supposed to help citizens is found to be ripe for corruption, does little to help and is likely a snare for those people it is supposed to help.
James O’Keefe at Project Veritas has documented a number of cases where Obamacare “Navigators” have counseled citizens to engage in fraud when signing up for Obamacare. As millions of Americans are learning, even the “inexpensive” Bronze plans under Obamacare are very costly without subsidies. Obamacare Navigators are encouraging citizens to under report their income in order to qualify for greater subsidies.
This tactic might be viewed by the unsophisticated as harmless “sticking it to the man” but in fact it is imperiling the financial future of these men and women. Defrauding the Federal government is a serious crime, and as the bills for all these free giveaways come due, the IRS will be tasked with wringing every cent out of Americans. Who thinks a citizen who has been receiving thousands of dollars per year fraudulently will be able to tell the IRS “The Navigator made me do it.”?
Obamacare Navigators who give this terrible advice are putting people at risk, but considering that Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius does not expect Navigators to be screened for felonies and other trouble with the law, scoundrels will be flocking to these posts. Why? Because as a Navigator you are going to be handling mountains of personal identification details, including social security numbers.
In fact, a woman in St. Louis is already a victim of identity theft thanks to Obamacare. The help center acknowledged that at least three people had been given her information. She will now have to be on the lookout for fraud and theft for the foreseeable future.
Foreseeable is a key word here. None of the insanity we are seeing with Obamacare is surprising to anyone with ears to hear and eyes to see. Rather than engage in simple, modest reforms that would benefit all Americans and actually halt the steady increase in insurance premiums, President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reed created this bureaucratic monstrosity that has put Americans into a tailspin.
A great deal of damage has been done, and millions of Americans will be struggling for months to untangle the mess the arrogance, hubris and incompetence of Obama and his Democrats have wrought.
This cannot be fixed, Obamacare has to be repealed. Even repealing it will not undo the crushing blow citizens will endure, but the first rule of being in a hole is quit digging.
Ed Martin is chairman of the Missouri Republican Party