by Mary Tuma
Courtesy of Creative Commons Images.
Apparently confused about what “criminal” entails, Gov. Rick Perry admonished Pres. Barack Obama’s signature heath care legislation this week:
“If this health care law is forced upon this country, the young men and women in this audience are the ones who are really going to pay the price,” Perry said at a New Jersey campaign event on Tuesday, according to conservative-leaning site, RealClearPolitics. “And that, I will suggest to you, reaches to the point of being a felony toward them and their future. That is a criminal act, from my perspective, to put that type of burden on them, to mortgage their future like that. America cannot stand that. America cannot accept that.”
Republican leaders have done all they can to derail the Affordable Care Act, known as ‘Obamacare’, implemented at the start of this month and by tacking on extra requirements for ‘navigators’ Perry is certainly among them. They’ve also flooded the airwaves with misinformation and fear– but deeming the ACA tantamount to a “felony” is taking it up a notch. Perry rejected the federal Medicaid expansion and is noted for bashing the service along with Medicare and Social Security as ‘unconstitutional.’
A ‘criminal act toward young men and women’ is one step further especially considering young adults may stand to benefit the most from Obamacare. According to Families USA, 40 percent, or 914,000, of uninsured Texans are ages 18-34 and would be eligible for premium tax credits, which are likely to be higher since young adults earn disproportionately lower wages. And while young adults may see fines if they decide not to partake in the ACA, jail time is not a punishment. The law specifically states that those who do not pay the penalty “shall not be subject to any criminal prosecution,” writes FactCheck.org. Oops!