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Roger Seidel, Published December 06 2013

Letter: Obamacare is monumentally unfair, fiscally irresponsible

As a small-business operator and concerned observer of events, I am concerned about some traditional American values that are undermined with implementation of Obamacare: The program gives higher priorities to noncitizens over American citizens, and gives higher priorities and funding to able-bodied people than to disabled people in need.

How is this done? Obamacare has special provisions for noncitizen residents to receive federally subsidized insurance and, by these actions, gives more and better coverage than to American citizens. In states that expand their Medicaid programs, citizens with incomes less than 138 percent of federal poverty level are automatically enrolled in Medicaid, but noncitizens receive subsidies to buy better coverage through Obamacare exchanges. Thus, Obamacare dumps millions of Americans into the inefficient Medicaid program while granting many noncitizens the means to buy health plans of their own choosing, subsidized by American citizens.

Does it make sense to offer noncitizens more and better coverage than to American citizens? Might this encourage immigration to the U.S. by people seeking taxpayer-funded welfare programs?

Our country has public safety nets for those truly in need due to disabilities. Yet, when Obamacare spends more than

$700 billion on its huge Medicaid expansion, a greater emphasis is placed on able-bodied adults than the disabled, which Medicare was intended to serve.

By extending health coverage to those who are able to work, Obamacare reduces and jeopardizes coverage for disabled Americans. Will Obama’s subsidies for health care to millions of unemployed and underemployed people accelerate an uncontrolled expansion of a permanent underclass who have scant financial incentive to work?

Effective reform cannot come from adding able-bodied adults to an overburdened program. Should not Congress and the president re-focus their efforts toward improving Medicaid’s quality, and restore its emphasis to provide care for the truly needy?

Seidel lives in Fergus Falls, Minn.