Why in heavens name did the public employee unions so aggressively support Obamacare? They ignored the basic fact that elected politicians, facing an avalanche of grossly underfunded health insurance retirement plans, quickly realized that Obamacare was the perfect excuse for state and local governments to drop their Cadillac health benefits plans. There never will be a clearer case of union lemmings happily leaping off the cliff of liberal ideology.
From Fox News:
Retired city workers are asking a judge to block Mayor Emanuel from making them rely on Obamacare for their health insurance.
This affects most city retirees and it underscores how, after decades of grotesque financial mismanagement, the only choices left are painful ones.
When Mayor Emanuel sent letters announcing the change last month to about 24,000 retired city workers, the watchdog Civic Federation praised the move, saying it could eventually save taxpayers $70 million or more each year.
But Underwood [who is a spokesperson for the lawsuit] and other retirees won't know until September at the earliest what Obamacare's cost to them may be. A spokesman for the Illinois Department of Insurance told FOX 32 News that six insurance companies have so far submitted 165 different plans, all now under review.
The 62-year-old cop [Underwood] who was once named a Shoreline Hero by a North Side neighborhood group said he now faces co-pays of $750 a month for his and his wife's health insurance. He doesn't want to pay more.
"The mayor doesn't know, nobody knows what Obamacare entails, what it's gonna cover, how much it's gonna cost," Underwood says. "Nobody knows. It's a question the President of the United States couldn't answer." With City Hall's four pension funds facing an unfunded liability of about $20 billion, the police fund has barely 30% of the money it needs, there are only painful choices ahead.
It only took this nation's union leadership 1,223 days to figure out they had been totally bamboozled by Obama and his Byzantine quagmire of over 20,000 pages of Obamacare regulations. Obviously, Hoffa and his ilk are not the sharpest tools in the Washington woodshed.
From Forbes we read:
Labor unions are among the key institutions responsible for the passage of Obamacare. They spent tons of money electing Democrats to Congress in 2006 and 2008, and fought hard to push the health law through the legislature in 2009 and 2010. But now, unions are waking up to the fact that Obamacare is heavily disruptive to the health benefits of their members.
Last Thursday, representatives of three of the nation's largest unions fired off a letter to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, warning that Obamacare would "shatter not only our hard-earned health benefits, but destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class."
The union leaders [James P. Hoffa, general president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters; Joseph Hansen, international president of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union; and Donald "D." Taylor, president of UNITE-HERE, a union representing hotel, airport, food service, gaming, and textile workers] conclude by stating that, "on behalf of the millions of working men and women we represent and the families they support, we can no longer stand silent in the face of elements of the Affordable Care Act that will destroy the very health and wellbeing of our members along with millions of other hardworking Americans."
In 2006 the Cato Institute estimated that, 'that state and local retiree health benefits are underfunded by $1.4 trillion nationwide." That number is probably closer to $2.5 trillion in 2013 inflation adjusted dollars.
And now Chicago has led the way by forcing retirees into Obamacare. Is there any doubt that not only government retirees, but almost all working union members will also be forced to accept Obamacare as their current contracts expires?
The Democrats will certainly blame the massive unfunded health plans for their sudden shift toward fiscal responsibility in eliminating the unions' Cadillac plans. While ironically, it was Democrats themselves, in the blue states like New York. Michigan, and California who purposely underfunded the health plans in the first place.
Pass the popcorn - this will be very interesting!