Republicans used their weekly address to highlight Obamacare's troubles and blast President Obama and Democrats for proposing a government plan to fix them.
North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis painted a bleak picture of how the healthcare law is working in his state, saying the vast majority of counties in the Tar Heel State will have just one marketplace insurer and noting that premiums are rising by an average of 25 percent.
And he sharply criticized Obama for suggesting in a speech this week that Congress could improve competition in the marketplaces by passing a government, "public option" insurance plan.
"Unfortunately, instead of working across the aisle to fix this mess, President Obama and congressional Democrats are in denial," Tillis said in a video released Saturday morning. "In fact, they're doubling down on their support for this failed law."
"Their solution is a so-called public option, which will eventually lead to a single-payer, government-run system that would put your family's health care in the control of unelected bureaucrats in Washington," Tillis said. "In other words, their solution to a failed government plan is more government plans."
Tillis said Obama painted a "rosy picture" of the Affordable Care Act that "doesn't match the reality" faced by marketplace shoppers. And he twice mentioned a recent criticism of the law from former President Bill Clinton, who said the way it is leaving some people without affordable coverage is "the craziest thing in the world."
Tillis concluded his short address by touting a health reform plan House Republicans released over the summer, which would repeal or gradually phase out most parts of the healthcare law and replace it with refundable tax credits to subsidize the purchase of private coverage, allow insurance to be sold across state lines and expand the use of health savings accounts, among other provisions.
"The heartaches of Obamacare don't have to be the norm. There's a better way to improve and modernize our nation's health care system, and only Republicans are offering that alternative," Tillis said.
On Thursday, President Obama delivered a major address defending his healthcare law and suggesting ways to improve it. As the law's fourth enrollment season approaches, state marketplaces are struggling with insurer exist and spiking monthly premiums. That could discourage healthier customers from enrolling and hurt the risk pools, compounding the problems in the future.