Donald Trump’s recent election has had United States citizens up in arms. However, in the midst of protests over the President-elect’s promises to “build the wall” and his threats on Muslim immigration, we may have found a silver lining to the countless atrocities: the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
The ACA, commonly known as Obamacare, had grand intentions. The policy was designed to allow people to maintain their current insurance plans if they chose to do so and to give uninsured Americans health insurance. While this seems like a beautiful solution to a costly problem, many Americans are opposed to the plan and have struggled under new regulations.
In 2014, CNN reported one of many cases where Obamacare went wrong. According to an article by reporter Wyatt Andrews, a man lost his family doctor of 14 years due to Obamacare stipulations.
According to John C. Goodman, a Forbes contributor, Obamacare’s original intent was to help uninsured Americans gain access to insurance. However, the reality of the act is unfortunate: 90% of the uninsured in 2016 will be exempt from the mandate.
Trump’s former opponent Hillary Clinton intended to maintain the basic premises of Obamacare while working out some of the kinks—a method which seems feasible but cannot come to fruition.
Trump intends to dismantle the act entirely. According to his website, Trump wants to replace the ACA with his plan, Health Savings Accounts. The HSA plan will allow Americans to purchase insurance across states, which would open the insurance market and create competitive pricing. This would also give Americans more options when it comes to insurance providers.
People spend thousands of dollars throughout their lives on insurance and out-of-pocket medical expenses, so when given the option to privatize their insurance in a competitive market, many Americans will likely take it. Consumerism is driven by competition and options, and privatized healthcare will strengthen American faith in the healthcare system.
Trump’s HSA intends to localize Medicaid programs, give local governments more flexibility and create a system in states that will guarantee insured individuals continuous coverage where it was previously uncertain.
Trump will not accomplish his healthcare plans easily or quickly, but according to his website, he plans to attack the job on day one—a lofty goal which is easier said than done.
To repeal Obamacare, Trump cannot simply commission Congress right away. First, he will need 60 votes in the Senate. According to an ABC news article on the matter, he may not even be able to accomplish that during his first 100 days in office.
If Trump is patient and tenacious, he will likely be able to change the entirety of the healthcare system, making the process of obtaining affordable insurance a reality for more Americans.
I believe Trump will be able to keep his promise to provide free-market inspired healthcare.
Hopefully, it is the only promise he will keep.
-Katie Burrell is a mass communications sophomore