Just last year, the Obama White House had stated numerous times that there were 46 to 48 million (or 60% more than he noted last week) unemployed peoples in the USA who did not have health care. "The claim was made repeatedly in a report published by the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) on June 2 and again in an op-ed published the same day by Christina Romer, the chair of CEA."
"The claim that there are 46 million uninsured "Americans' has also been used by members of Congress and news organizations." The White House noted that this figure included 10 million non-Americans who do not have health care at the time last Spring when many census figures were counted.
This shift from nearly 50 Million Unemployed in America to 30 Million in less than 9 months is outrageous politics by the White House. As I (not-to-mention-my-wife) am currently an uninsured American living abroad, I would estimate that the number of Americans who are uninsured and are forced to work outside the USA during any recent census might be several million more than the 46 to 48 million figure used by the Obama Administration most of 2009. In other words, Obama's White House is as of this past week undercounting well-over ten million transient or foreign (& American) laborers in and outside the USA who are not being covered by health care in the USA.
As late as October 2009, the Kaisar Foundation "ha[d]
analyzed census data to provide a closer look at the people without health
insurance in the U.S.
Its report, focused on people younger than age 65, found 45.7 million
"nonelderly" uninsured people in the U.S. last year (including the
elderly, the number of uninsured was 46.3 million). Low-income adults without dependent
children -- who generally do not qualify for government programs like Medicaid --
were hit hardest. Despite heated rhetoric on the issue, immigrants are not
driving the problem; 80% of the uninsured under age 65 are native-born or
naturalized citizens. The uncompensated cost of providing health care to the
uninsured last year was $57 billion, three-quarters of which was picked up by
the Federal Government."Read more here .
Interestingly, there is still another report from CNN in 2009 that nearly 90 million Americans
had been uninsured in 2007 and 2008. CNN
reported, "The study, commissioned by the consumer health advocacy group
Families USA, found 86.7 million Americans were uninsured at one point during
the past two years."
Why is the White House not using these higher, 86.7 million figures to make its point that we need health care across the board?
Worse still, a Raw Story report had already clarified last December 2009, "If Democrats manage to pull off efforts to reform the US healthcare system and ensure coverage for millions who are currently without insurance, the new system -- by design -- will likely still leave tens of thousands to die without insurance before reforms kick in."
In addition, "A Raw Story analysis, based on a recent HarvardMedicalSchool study, estimates that 135,000 American citizens and over 6,600 US veterans will die due to a lack of health insurance before current proposed healthcare reform measures would take effect."
To make the numbers easier to envision for readers, The Raw Story explained, "One hundred and thirty-five thousand US lives far exceeds the total number of Americans who died in the Korean War, the Vietnam War and the attacks of 9/11 combined. The lives of over 6,600 US veterans is more -- by over 1,300 -- than the total number of US soldiers who have thus far died in both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars."
The only credible source that might indicate that the lower totals of uninsured peoples in America used last week by Obama to talk to Republicans in congress is appropriate comes from a WSJ article. In late June 2009 the Wall Street Journal's Carl Bialik wrote about the "Unhealthy Accounting of Uninsured Americans". Bialik noted, "The Census Bureau estimates that the number of uninsured amounts to 45.7 million people. But the agency might be overcounting by millions due to faulty assumptions. Another problem: That 45.7 million figure includes undocumented immigrants, even though they aren't likely to be covered under new laws."
I read through Bialik's article, but found only half of his flawed assumption charges actually held water.
For example, Bialik writes, "Of the rest, some people are eligible for health insurance but don't know it and many can afford it but don't want it. About 43% of uninsured nonelderly adults have incomes greater than 2.5 times the poverty level, according to a report released Tuesday by the business-backed Employment Policies Institute."