Santorum and Obamacare

Rick Santorum - Caricature

Image by DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Rick Santorum claims that the main, perhaps sole, reason that he is running is to repeal Obamacare. He was a Congressman from 1991 to 1995 and a US Senator from 1995 to 2007, during which time his healthcare coverage was provided by the US government. Since that time he has been employed by a conservative think tank, the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC. Presumably his employer has provided healthcare insurance for Rick and his wife and seven children. I think that it is safe to assume that Santorum is a member in good standing of the 1%. He advocates repealing Obamacare, but what does he want to replace it?

I would suggest to Rick that he try walking in the shoes of many of the 99%, particularly the unemployed, for a change of view. If he were unemployed, he would continue to have all the daily and monthly expenses of daily life plus COBRA healthcare insurance for his family of nine would exceed $2500 per month until it expired after 18 months or until his ability to pay ran out, whichever happened first. I calculate that if he were unemployed and managed to find employment at a minimum wage job as many of the recently created jobs are probably at or near the minimum wage and offer little or no health care insurance, he would be forced to continue with the COBRA coverage. I also calculate that it would take all nine members of his family, husband, wife and all seven children, working fulltime at the minimum wage to meet their household expenses. Just an educated guess on my part since I have no idea how much their mortgage is or how many cars they own. Putting all those children to work should make Newt Gingrich happy, but my point is he has NO IDEA what life is like for many Americans.

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