Today Michele Bachmann spoke at a small business in her home town of Waterloo, Iowa. The business, OMJC Signal, a safety equipment manufacturer, opened its doors for Bachmann to answer questions in an informal round-table setting.
During this appearance, Bachmann shared her sentiments about health care and reminisced about the good-ole-days when many Americans purchased their own health insurance, and didn’t depend on their employer for insurance.
"When I grew up here in Iowa, we owned our own health insurance. We didn't necessarily have it from our employer," she said. “I think you should be able to own your plan, so your employer doesn't own it - you get to own it, and you buy it with your own tax-free money. You should be able to set aside whatever amount of your income you need to purchase the kind of health care you need for yourself, for your family."
Really? This scenario happened when we were cooking on avocado green range tops, and gas was less than a $1.00. This was so long ago, the very idea Bachmann talks about causes the average American to laugh out loud.
If a person lost their job (and health insurance), they would have the option to get COBRA—which stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985, which is a law passed by the U.S. Congress on a reconciliation basis and signed by President Reagan that mandates an insurance program giving some employees the ability to continue health insurance coverage after leaving employment. It is an insurance option that costs less that private insurance.
Under COBRA, for a family of five (two adults and three children), the average cost is $1,005 per month. Private insurance with Kaiser or Blue Shield is substantially more.
Once again, Bachmann is speaking in platitudes. More rhetoric to those who don’t know, don’t care, or can’t relate to what she’s talking about. With insurance covered by employers, the employee is generally paying only 20% of the total cost plus, in many instances, a co-payment at the time of a doctor’s appointment.
With her foot in mouth exercise last week with the commentary about a woman who approached her stating that her daughter suffered from mental retardation after the HPV vaccine, Bachmann attempted to back pedal by telling The Associated Press today, “All I was doing is relaying what a woman had said. I relayed what she said. I wasn’t attesting to her accuracy. I wasn’t attesting to anything.”
Her commentary today about insurance is another example of how out of touch Bachmann is, and how she tailors her speeches to attract applause from a small select group who showers her with praise.
Bachmann reminds me of another female candidate out there on stand-by.