A recently-shut down Carl's Jr. restaurant in Carrollton, Texas, currently has a sign posted outside that reads: "Closed by Obamacare." After being tipped off by a reader, TheBlaze traveled to the location to confirm the sign's authenticity.
It wasn't immediately clear whether or not President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, which made its very bumpy debut earlier this week, actually forced the location to shut its doors. Attempts to call the phone number associated with the location only resulted in exchanges with an automated messaging system announcing the number is no longer in use.
It is entirely possible that the sign is more of a political statement than a statement of fact. However, TheBlaze is currently working to obtain more information about the sign and reason for the Carl's Jr. location's going out of business. We have reached out to the restaurant chain's corporate office and this story will be updated should the company respond.
Carl's Jr. CEO Andrew Puzder recently penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal explaining why he believes Obamacare can't work:
The rising cost of insurance affects people whether they purchase insurance through their employers or an exchange, since both depend on private insurers. If insurance costs go up, taxpayers also may end up paying more to foot the bill for the higher cost of subsidized insurance. This is particularly concerning since the administration has announced that it will be unable to verify whether applicants for subsidies actually qualify for them. The subsidies are likely to be very popular.
The Obama administration seems to recognize the looming trouble and is urging professional sports organizations and parent groups to encourage young workers signing up for coverage. Maybe that will be effective. It's certainly preferable to ill-advised attempts to postpone, and thus change, the law by fiat rather than by legislation. Maybe the administration will even do what it should have done in the first place: Take the time to develop a bipartisan, market-driven approach that might actually work.
And Obamacare didn't get off to a good start this week either.
The Obama administration is taking down its health overhaul website for repairs this weekend. Even the very few that were able to get a health insurance quote faced lengthy wait times and high monthly premiums.
For example, Obama supporter Chad Henderson went through the Obamacare application process and discovered he would pay $175 per month under the president's health care plan. He is a healthy 21-year-old male who earns $11,500. His monthly premium will be 18 percent of his yearly income if he decides to purchase the plan.
Many others encountered a screen that told them to wait, and they did, sometimes for hours. Refreshing the screen only sent them to the back of the line.
Quite a few got hung up trying to create security questions to protect their accounts. The drop-down menus providing the questions would not populate. As a result, consumers could not advance through the application process and learn if they were eligible for a tax credit to help pay premiums, much less pick a plan.
Some who did make it through were timed out because they took too long comparing plans.
At the end of the first day at most a handful of people had managed to successfully enroll through the federal site.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.