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Obamacare 'success story' turns sour

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A woman who was cited by President Obama last month at the White House as an Obamacare success story now says she can’t afford coverage because her state health care exchange gave her incorrect information.

Jessica Sanford of Washington state appeared with Mr. Obama in the Rose Garden at the White House on Oct. 21 as the president promoted the new health care entitlement. She beamed with pride as the president read aloud her letter describing how her “stress lifted” after she enrolled in the state’s health care exchange to deal with her son’s medication and doctor visits for an attention deficit disorder.

“That’s what the Affordable Care Act is all about,” Mr. Obama said at the time. “The point is, the essence of the law — the health insurance that’s available to people — is working just fine.”

But the state later notified Ms. Sanford, 48, that an miscalculation in her tax credit eligibility meant her insurance premiums would increase from $198 a month to $280. After sorting out that problem, she said she was notified again of a “system error” and given an even higher quote that she couldn’t afford — at least $324 per month, with higher deductibles.

“This is it. I’m not getting insurance,” the single mother told CNN. “That’s where it stands right now unless they fix it.”

On the Facebook page for the Washington HealthPlanFinder, she wrote of her frustration — and that she now faces the $95 penalty the law imposes on those without health insurance.

“Wow. You guys really screwed me over,” she wrote. “Now I have been priced out and will not be able to afford the plans you offer. But, I get to pay $95 and up for not having health insurance. I am so incredibly disappointed and saddened. You majorly screwed up.”

She told the network in disgust: “What the hell? Why is it the same story as the federal government? They didn’t have it ready. They screwed up.”

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About the Author
Dave Boyer

Dave Boyer

Dave Boyer is a White House correspondent for The Washington Times. A native of Allentown, Pa., Boyer worked for the Philadelphia Inquirer from 2002 to 2011 and also has covered Congress for the Times. He is a graduate of Penn State University. Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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