Earlier this week, late-night talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel delivered an emotional monologue, describing how his newborn son had nearly died because of a heart ailment and declaring that before Obamacare "if you were born with congenital heart disease like my son was, there was a good chance you wouldn’t be able to get health insurance because you had a pre-existing condition." Added Kimmel: "If your baby is going to die, and it doesn’t have to, it shouldn’t matter how much money you make. I think that’s something that, whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat or something else, we all agree on that, right?"
While it's easy to analyze Republicans' ongoing effort to repeal Obamacare from a strictly analytical perspective, it is necessary at times to realize that there is a human toll to their plan for letting insurance companies charge higher premiums based on pre-existing conditions. Emotion as well as reason is vital when making that case, a fact that Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio clearly recognized when he began tweeting on Thursday.
He didn't tell a personal story. He just listed the conditions that could cause someone to have skyrocketing health insurance costs under the proposed Republican system. And it was a very, very, very long list.
The new health care bill, which is being pushed through the House of Representatives before the Congressional Budget Office can even assess its impact, would increase costs for low-income Americans by hundreds or even thousands of dollars each year. It would also make it very likely that people with pre-existing conditions will face higher costs for their insurance coverage.
Then again, considering that the House Republicans contain individuals like Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama, who said earlier this week that "people who lead good lives" don't have pre-existing conditions, perhaps it's not surprising that this bill has a real chance of being passed regardless of the millions of people it would hurt.