DeMint, Price Cry Foul on ObamaCare Proposals: President Has 'Not Been Telling the Truth'

While some of the media have suggested Americans need to keep an open mind about President Barack Obama’s health care proposals, critics say there’s an underlying threat to those that are already insured.

Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., and Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., both appeared in a health care panel, “Real Health Care Reform: More Choices, Lower Cost, No Tax Hikes - And Why Government Medicine is a Bad Idea” sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform, the Media Research Center and the Health Care Freedom Coalition June 24 in Washington, D.C.

DeMint explained the promise Obama made at a June 23 press conference that “If you like your health plan, you'll keep your health plan,” is simply untrue because it will disrupt market forces.

“Well, what Obama is talking about is not true,” DeMint said. “A government option will replace private health insurance and there’s no question about that. It will not pay doctors enough to see patients. It’ll shift more of the cost on to private health insurers. And so, the competition there will basically eliminate those who are trying to operate in the free market.”

According to DeMint, the Obama administration and congressional Democrats are exaggerating the issue by inflating the number of uninsured and creating the perception of a “crisis” to force through Obama’s proposal – a tactic DeMint warned about in the past regarding the $787-billion stimulus.

“And what the administration and the Democrats and are saying now I think is misrepresenting everything – creating a crisis,” DeMint said. “They’re trying to exaggerate the number of people who are uninsured. They’re talking about a government plan that can do things that no government plan has ever done. It’s really freedom that works, choices that work, competition that works. We know what works in America and government doesn’t.”

Price, the chair of the House Republican Study Committee, reiterated DeMint’s point claiming the president wasn’t telling the truth about the effects of his health care policy measures.

“I want to point out one thing that the president said yesterday and I would again echo the Senator’s comments and that is that up to this point, the president simply has not been telling the truth,” Price said. “Yesterday though, he began to march down a road that bore a little more resemblance to the truth. When he was pressed on this notion that he says, when he says, ‘If you like your plan, you may keep it,’ well in fact that’s not what the bill says that was introduced in the House and frankly that’s not what the president has supported.”

Price explained that it’s the consequence of what happens when government involves itself in these areas of health care – rules are made and eventually it “crowds out” private enterprise.

“What he clarified yesterday, before the press was that if you like what you have the government will not move you out, will not force you into another plan,” Price continued. “What he didn’t complete that sentence with is the next clause which is ‘but the government may institute rules that, in fact will institute rules that will force you out of your plan.’ And that’s the crowd out that happens when the government gets involved in the area of health care, whether it’s Medicare, whether it’s SCHIP or any other program.”

The ultimate result – those who approve of the status quo won’t be able to hold on to their current health care plan, the Georgia congressman warned.

“If you like your current coverage and your current plan, it is very likely that you will not be able to keep it under the President’s proposal,” Price said.