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    Posted March 28, 2012 by
    Burbank, California
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Election 2012: Your stories

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    Insurance for Mitt By the Numbers


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     dpkronmiller shared his thoughts on recent remarks by Mitt Romney on the ongoing national health care debate, and offered some hard numbers explaining just how much of a drain on your income insurance can be. 'I like the Affordable Care Act but I have never been a fan of the mandate,' he said. 'I personally hope the bill survives so we can see how that insurance exchange and the non-profit plans affect the market and accessibility. I think that increased competition has to drive down costs regardless of the mandate.'
    - jmsaba, CNN iReport producer

    Mitt Romney thinks you should only get covered for pre-existing conditions if you previously had insurance. He feels someone who has decided to not buy insurance should not be able to decide to do so after they discover they have a medical condition.



    Maybe Mitt does not understand how hard it is to be able to afford insurance at all when you're struggling. So I broke it down a little.



    His quote:
    "Well, if they’re 45 years old, and they show up and they say, 'I want insurance because I’ve got a heart disease, it’s like, 'Hey guys, we can’t play the game like that, You've got to get insurance when you’re well, and if you get ill, then you’re going to be covered."


    Now the example I use in the video is extreme, though common and this individual might benefit from some existing programs for lower income individuals - though not everyone qualifies for Medicaid and like programs simply because of income. And if you added student debt to that 15k a year - well - you can imagine it would complicate that person's ability to get by significantly and possibly even keep them from moving up in their career given all their resources are going to keep them alive.


    The same logic however also can be applied to those above the low income/poverty line - a college grad a few years out of school might have heafty school loans to repay and even making around 25k a year could be difficult with the burden of insurance. And in my example in the video I left out items like phone costs, internet and clothing - three items very necessary to stay in the workforce in 2012.


    College Grad: $25k a year job


    Monthly Expenses

    Insurance Costs: $300

    Rent: $700

    Food: $400

    Transportation: $50 (bus)

    Water/Power: $50

    Phone: $50

    Internet: $50

    Loans: $300


    Yearly Total: $22,800

    Left: $2200



    And I have not accounted for any taxes - though at this income level they would be lower. Nor have I accounted for clothing, car payments and other expeneses that pop up over the course of the year.


    Now imagine that College Grad is a single parent - perhaps her spouse died in combat or is no longer in the picture. Her expenses would be even higher. THe point is - when you're poor - every little bit helps - otherwise how would you ever climb out of your situation? What chance could you really have?


    Health car is not simple but what should be is our desire to make sure everyone is covered - not with just insurance but with care. And Mitt Romney, though well meaning, seems to think everyone has had opportunities to have insurance when they were younger - not all companies provide it after all - once again showing a disconnect between his own experiences and those of us who have had to struggle a bit more.


    At least he is open to allowing pre-existing conditions to be waved if you've had insurance in the past - but that ignores those who have not had that opportunity.



    More from me at: www.middlenation.com

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