Turley-Hansen: Ariz. learns from national union’s unhappiness with Obamacare - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Opinion

Turley-Hansen: Ariz. learns from national union’s unhappiness with Obamacare

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Posted: Saturday, July 27, 2013 3:15 pm | Updated: 7:00 pm, Sun Sep 22, 2013.

You’ll want to find and sign one of those petitions against Arizona’s implementation of Obamacare. You’ll be glad you did. A fragile economic recovery here in the Valley is now in jeopardy with the recent passage of the law.

It was signed by Gov. Jan Brewer, who was flanked by RINOs and progressive state legislators and despite full opposition from Republican leaders in both Houses.

If you’re confused over conflicting reports on what Obamacare will do for us, take your cues from the nation’s powerful unions which have suddenly awakened to the failures within the Affordable Health Care Act.

When you think about it, what better signal can we get than those coming from big labor, which vigorously backed Obama’s signature legislation? Go to Forbes.com (July, 15) and search “labor-leaders-obamacare.” There, find details on a letter sent recently from three of the nation’s largest unions to Senate President Harry Reid and Sen. Nancy Pelosi. Apparently, reality has hit home in regards to the working class.

The letter warns that Obamacare will “shatter not only our hard-earned health benefits, but destroy the foundation of the 40-hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class.”

The leaders specifically pointed out Obama’s promise “that if we liked the health plans we have now, we can keep them,” a pledge they say is now “under threat.”

And they have another major concern, which many of our Arizona neighbors can relate to: Fewer small companies now hire full-time employees; instead, part-time workers fill their needs.

Perhaps it’s happened to you. This, of course, because of employer’s desire to side-step the business breaking mandates that come with providing full-time employee health insurance.

The union leaders tell Senate leaders: “We have a problem, you need to fix it.”

And, now that problem belongs to Arizona. Perhaps Gov. Brewer believes her shift towards Obamacare, in order to expand the state’s Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) program, is best for this state, but those paying attention warn it’ll irreversibly diminish our economy.

Consider this: For decades Arizona’s AHCCCS program has competently served this state, including the uninsured, proving us capable of managing our own health care issues without strangling, federal strings. So, again we are compelled to ask: Why would the governor put us in jeopardy?

Note these two quotes: Forbes: “Arizona residents who pay for their own insurance face higher costs, so that Arizona can fund a Medicaid expansion that it can’t afford.” And, National Review editors: “fiction is that this Medicaid spending will, in Governor Brewer’s words, ‘save and create thousands of jobs.’ Welfare spending is not a job-creation program. That is basic economics.”

Still not convinced? For clear details, go to gilbertwatch.com for Arizona Senate President Andy Bigg’s rebuttal to Mike Broomhead. Biggs clearly spells it all out.

Fellow Valley neighbors, let’s stop this now. Go to www.urapc.org for petitions and join in the movement to take this question to voters where it belonged in the first place.

Remember two points: This is not a Republican issue, or conservative. All of us count on a healthy workforce and genuine affordable health care. 

And, don’t forget, June’s Supreme Court ruling proclaimed that Congress is not permitted to penalize states that refuse to implement Obamacare.

Take a cue from the very unions who played an aggressive role in this health care fiasco. Act now and get this issue on the Arizona ballot.

• East Valley resident Linda Turley-Hansen (turleyhansen@gmail.com) is a syndicated columnist and former Phoenix veteran TV anchor.

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