A recent WSJ/NBC poll shows even the uninsureds have turned against President Obama. James Taranto believes that most uninsureds are so by choice, and it would have been better to address the actual problem rather than pass a law the harms just about everyone it touches:
It jacks up their premiums to pay for all the mandated coverages–especially if they’re young and healthy and thus least likely to think they need insurance to begin with. It then tells them that they must buy insurance, whether they want it or not. Imagine a law ordering everyone to buy a bicycle, or a periodic ration of meat. Even if the prices were deeply discounted, it would still be an unmitigated burden on noncyclists or vegetarians…
How many of the uninsured lack insurance because of pre-existing conditions? It’s hard to know, but it would appear the proportion is not high. A September Kaiser Family Foundation study reported that “the high cost of insurance is the main reason why people go without coverage.” It includes a pie chart with the following breakdown of reasons for lacking insurance: Insurance not affordable, 31.6%; lost job, 29.4%; other, 17.4%; no offer, 11.2%; aged out/left school, 8.8%; no need, 1.5%.
Arguably the problem of the uninsurable was a market failure that justified government intervention of some sort. If ObamaCare’s architects had approached the matter intelligently, they would have conducted research to identify the extent of that precise problem and carefully targeted their response. Government is quite capable of implementing even modest programs disastrously, but the hubris of demanding “comprehensive reform” gave us a law that had to be marketed via massive consumer fraud, and that harms almost everyone it affects.