Rochester, N.Y. (CBS DC) — Sen. Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat and longtime backer of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, said that insurance rates are likely to spike – and “Obamacare” is partly to blame.

Speaking with WHEC Rochester, Schumer said, “Our insurance department is empowered to protect families and we’re going to watch them like a hawk to make sure they do, because if they don’t, these rates could go through the roof.”

“It’s in part because of Obamacare, but health care costs have been going up in double digits for years and years and years. The good news is in this bill, there’s a way to stop it.”

The comments from Schumer were in response to many insurance companies’ failure to announce premium increases for next year. Some healthcare experts are warning that premiums could go up by more than 10 percent on January 1 when Obamacare kicks in across the country.

Many experts believe that price increases in 2014 are more than likely, but the public is uninformed about possible changes, WHEC reports.

The Affordable Care Act, also called “Obamacare,” is a United States federal statute signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010. Together with the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, it represents the most significant government expansion and regulatory overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system since the passage of Medicare and Medicaid in 1965.


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