When the House narrowly passed the GOP Obamacare replacement a few days ago, you knew the liberal meltdown was coming. Despite the fact that major changes were needed, some typical narratives have already made their way into the debate. It couldn’t be that Obamacare is on life support. It surely couldn’t be that many Americans’ choices have been reduced to one insurer. No, the repeal of Obamacare means Republicans want all sick people to die so rich people can get a tiny tax break.
While these arguments against the GOP healthcare bill are predictable, liberals have finally outdone themselves with the hysteria. Instead of debating the merits of the plan, a new fake news narrative is spreading around like wildfire. In addition to wanting Jimmy Kimmel’s son to die, Republicans also made rape a pre-existing condition! How evil can we be?
Of course, this criticism of the legislation is ludicrous. However, that hasn’t stopped it from spreading around liberal media circles. Thankfully, this delusional talking point is already being thoroughly debunked.
From the Washington Post:
One of the viral claims about the American Health Care Act (AHCA), the new Republican bill to replace the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare), was this claim that the AHCA “made being rape survivor a pre-existing condition,” or that it “classified rape as a pre-existing condition.”
In fact, even the venerable bastion of news, CNN, did a story on that very subject. Well of course they did.
But that’s not even close to the truth. In fact, it is a deliberate attempt to misinform the gullible:
The AHCA does not specifically address or classify rape or sexual assault as a pre-existing condition. It also would not deny coverage to anyone because of a pre-existing condition.
AHCA specifically addresses states’ abilities to get a waiver so that “health status” is no longer protected from underwriting, according to a House Energy and Commerce aide. But other protections remain in place — including for mental conditions and conditions relating to acts of domestic violence — and are still protected from being incorporated into insurance underwriting, according to the aide.
Not only that, most states have laws that prevent insurers from denying coverage for this reason:
But there is another wrinkle which makes this scenario highly unlikely: Virtually every state already has a law prohibiting insurance discrimination based on sexual assault and/or domestic violence.
At least 45 states have laws prohibiting health insurance companies from using a woman’s status as a domestic violence survivor to deny coverage, according to the National Women’s Law Center.
In all, the Washington Post concludes this narrative is a lie:
We always say at The Fact Checker that the more complicated the topic, the more susceptible it is to spin. Both media coverage and hyperbole among advocates are at fault for creating a misleading representation of the House GOP health bill. We wavered between Three and Four Pinocchios, but the out-of-control rhetoric and the numerous assumptions pushed us to Four Pinocchios.
The fact that a publication like the Washington Post is rating this a lie should be enough evidence for liberals to ditch the narrative. After all, the Washington Post isn’t exactly known for being friendly to conservatives. But if you’re still skeptical, Politifact came to the same conclusion.
As the GOP healthcare bill goes to the Senate for debate, you can expect more hysteria from the left. Now that this little bit of fake news is dead, what could be next?
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]