Washington woman touted as Obamacare success story can’t actually afford healthcare

During a speech last month, President Obama attempted to highlight Obamacare ‘success’ stories – one of which involved a Washington state single mother, Jessica Sanford, who had sent the White House an email outlining how she was finally able to purchase ‘affordable’ healthcare because of Obamacare. As it turns out, Sanford actually cannot afford to purchase insurance through the Washington state exchanges, and she shared her story with CNN.

“Can we also do the story here on the woman – now this is a CNN story on the 48-year-old single mom of a teenage son who just purchased what she considered to be affordable insurance from the Washington state exchange for Obamacare,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “The president even spoke about her. Here, listen to this.”

During a White House speech in October, President Obama had this to say about Sanford:

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I recently received a letter from a woman named Jessica Sanford in Washington state. And here's what she wrote, I am a single mom, no child support, self-employed, and I haven't had insurance for 15 years because it's too expensive. I was crying the other day when I signed up, so much stress lifted.

While Sanford initially thought Obamacare would provide an affordable option for her and her son, it turns out that has not been the case. In the interview with CNN, Sanford explained what has unfolded in the last few weeks, including being alerted that her plan would not actually be subsidized – increasing the price tremendously.

SANFORD: It was a huge disappointment, especially since I had, you know, my story had been shared by the president. I felt like, you know, I just felt really embarrassed that, you know, he quoted my story and then come to find that the Washington health plan finder, the website here in our state, had grossly miscalculated or they're having a problem figuring their tax credits, and so at least for right now, I don't -- I'm not going to be getting insurance.

“So it went from $169 to $198 to $280. That was for the gold plan they offered,” Pat explained. “Then she looked around, found the silver plan for $390 per month. So even more. And then, the cheaper bronze plan was $324 a month with a high deductible and way more than she could afford. So she has no insurance.”

“And she got the letter: Your household has been eligible for a federal tax credit of zero dollars to help you cover the cost of your monthly health insurance premium payments,” Stu said.

“That's a lot of help – zeroes. Thank you for the help,” Pat concluded shaking his head. “It’s unbelievable.”

Front page image courtesy of the AP

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