Politics or People?

How Dallas County, Texas Stands To Benefit from Obamacare
Why are Reps. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Kenny Marchant (R-TX), Michael C. Burgess (R-TX), and Pete Sessions (R-TX), putting politics over people?
Starting October 1, millions of Americans will finally be able to sign up to purchase quality, affordable health care for the first time when the new Obamacare marketplaces open for enrollment. Many of these same Americans and others will be eligible for subsidies that will make coverage even more affordable. And come January 1, 2014, the worst abuses of the insurance industry, including denying coverage to those with preexisting conditions, will be history. But many conservatives in Congress and their allies are refighting old political battles and refusing to help people and businesses from even finding out about how the law will work and how to take advantage of its benefits. Sadly, many of these opponents of Obamacare represent counties with some of the highest rates of uninsured people in the nation. Out of the more than 3,100 counties in the nation, the residents of Dallas County, Texas are among those who stand to benefit the most from Obamacare. Nevertheless, Reps. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Kenny Marchant (R-TX), Michael C. Burgess (R-TX), and Pete Sessions (R-TX) have been determined to repeal Obamacare and to let insurance companies once again deny care to people with pre-existing conditions, set lifetime limits on coverage and charge women more than men. Obamacare is the law of the land. It’s time for Reps. Hensarling, Marchant, Burgess and Sessions to stop playing political games and to start making sure their constituents have the information they need to take advantage of the benefits and get health care coverage.

Dallas County Facts:
663,878 are uninsured: Of the 2,139,366 people under age 65 in Dallas County, 31 percent are uninsured. The county is ranked the 72nd worst out of the over 3,100 counties nationwide.i 311,893 women are uninsured: In Dallas County, 29.1 percent of women under age 65 are uninsured — placing it in the worst third percent among all counties in the nation and the 80th worst out of over 3,100 counties overall. ii 354,433 young people are uninsured: In Dallas County, 44.9 percent of young people ages 18 to 39 lack health insurance, placing it in the worst four percent among all counties and the 113th worst out of over 3,100 counties overall.iii 311,288 uninsured are eligible for subsidies or tax credits: In Dallas County, 34.6 percent of those making between 138 and 400 percent of the federal poverty line – a key group that will qualify for insurance subsidies under the Affordable Care Act – are uninsured. Among this group, Dallas County is in the worst one percent among all counties and ranks 26th worst among all counties overall.iv 416,453 Hispanics are uninsured: In Dallas County, 47.2 percent of Hispanics are uninsured – placing it in the 12th percentile among all counties in the nation.v

119,660 African Americans are uninsured: In Dallas County, 23.8 percent of African Americans are uninsured— placing it in the 16th percentile among all counties in the nation.vi High rate of diabetes: Dallas County has a rate of diabetes prevalence that is more than 13 percent higher than the national average, at 9.4 percent of the population.vii High rate of heart disease: Dallas County’s heart disease mortality rate of those under age 75 is 71.0 per 100,000 people – 8 percent above the national average.viii High rate of stroke: Dallas County’s stroke mortality rate of those under age 75 is 14.9 per 100,000 people – 26 percent over the national average.ix

Reps. Jeb Hensarling, Kenny Marchant, Michael C. Burgess, and Pete Sessions
Reps. Hensarling, Marchant, Burgess, and Sessions have been wasting time playing political games to try and repeal health care 144 times without even a plan to replace it.x And even though their constituents would benefit from the law, Reps. Hensarling, Marchant, Burgess, and Sessions keep trying to sabotage the law from working: Rep. Hensarling: “Mr. Speaker, you cannot improve the health care of a nation by impoverishing its children. …The American people don’t want it. It's personal.”xi Rep. Marchant: “This approach is wrong, as all Americans should be exempt from this disastrous health care law.”xii Rep. Burgess: “Make no mistake about it: it’s bad from start to finish.”xiii Rep. Sessions: “I’m pleased that House Republicans acted today to dismantle ObamaCare piece-by-piece while we continue to fight for a full repeal.”xiv Democratic Reps. Eddie Bernice Johnson and Marc Veasey, who also represent Dallas County, recognize that Obamacare is the law of the land and that it’s their job to make sure it works for their constituents and that they understand how to take advantage of its benefits: Marc Veasey: “I believe all Americans deserve access to quality and affordable health care. I am committed to ensuring the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is fully carried out and that constituents in the 33rd District receive needed care and services to lead productive and healthy lives.” xv Eddie Bernice Johnson: “Over the past three years, my constituents have already been seeing lower costs and better coverage.”xvi
Ibid. Ibid. iii Ibid. iv Ibid. v Census Bureau, "American Community Survey," 3-year estimates 2008-2010. Accessed using American Fact Finder: http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml (last accessed July 2013). vi Ibid.
i ii

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Interactive Diabetes Atlases,” 2009, http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/atlas/ (last accessed July 2013). viii Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Interactive Atlas of Heart Disease and Stroke Tables,” 3 -year estimates 20082010, http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/DHDSPAtlas/reports.aspx (last accessed July 2013). ix Ibid. x Based on internal calculations of 39 separate roll call votes to repeal, defund or otherwise dismantle the Affordable Care Act from January 1, 2011 through July 17, 2013. This includes one voice vote for which no recorded vote was taken. xi Jeb Hensarling, “Hensarling on Obamacare: Let’s repeal it today, replace it tomorrow,” 21 January 2011, http://hensarling.house.gov/news/press-releases/2011/01/hensarling-on-obamacare-lets-repeal-it-today-replace-ittomorrow.shtml (last accessed July 2013). xii Kenny Marchant, “Marchant Votes for Full Repeal of Obamacare,” 16 May 2013, http://marchant.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=334333 (last accessed July 2013). xiii Michael Burgess, “People Won’t Know How Bad Obamacare Is Until 2014,” 21 March 2011, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUwiPlefC0E (last accessed July 2013). xiv Pete Sessions, “All Americans Deserve Relief from Obamacare,” 17 July 2013, http://sessions.house.gov/index.cfm/pressreleases?ID=2f27214e-1a2c-43d6-98b2-0df21b78cc6c (last accessed July 2013). xv Marc Veasey, “What Implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Means for TX -33,” http://veasey.house.gov/resources/health-care (last accesses July 2013). xvi Eddie Bernice Johnson, “Statement,” 19 July 2013, http://ebjohnson.house.gov/press-releases/congresswoman-eddiebernice-johnson-releases-statement-highlighting-the-benefits-of-the-affordable-care-act-for-the-30th-congressional-district/ (last accessed July 2013).