Liberal Newspapers Waking Up to Obama’s ‘Aggressive’ Executive Power

Newspaper editorial pages once supportive of Obama are now backing off their enthusiasm. Noteworthy is the Los Angeles Times citing Obama’s use of executive power to change deadlines and undermine requirements,  specially when it comes to the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

While the paper blamed anti-ObamaCare Republicans, it still maintains Obama should have “made an effort to engage the co-equal branch.”

Read more at The Blaze

Obamacare’s Male/Female Ratio is Out of Whack

The majority of the 3.3 million people signing up for Obamacare are female. This is up from 1 percent in December, 2013. Debate exists over whether the “mix” of people enrolling for private insurance will force insurers to increase rates. So far the concern has been that issuers need a variety of young and healthy people to help pay for insurance company costs as a result of expenses incurred by older and sicker workers. Yet, women in their 20s  can actually be more expensive to cover than men.

The cure? If most of the female enrollees are older, “the feminine tilt of the gender breakdown may have little impact on premiums.”

Read more at MarketWatch.com

 

 

 

HHS won’t say if Sebelius is fundraising for Obamacare

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and her staff may be continuing their efforts to secure private contributions to assist an outside group in touting the President’s healthcare law. These efforts are geared toward boosting low enrollment numbers during the glitch-ridden fall, 2013 rollout.

Last May similar efforts asking business executives and non-profit organizations to donate to Enroll America caused negative reaction among Republicans on Capitol Hill. Two GOP-led committee investigations began, and several Republican senators demanded the HHS inspector general investigate as well. Sebelius’ efforts have been referred to as a “shakedown for cash.”

Watchdogs still can’t agree whether Sebelius has violated any federal fundraising laws.

Read more at The Washington Examiner

Kathleen Sebelius: No Job Loss Under Obamacare

According to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, “there is absolutely no evidence” the Affordable Care Act will negatively impact employment; this comment comes despite a report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) predicting fewer people working. Sebelius has described such findings as a “myth”.

The CBO report claims the healthcare law will cause Americans to decrease their working hours. This equals some 2 million fewer jobs by 2017.

Read more at Politico

Obama: ‘Going to Look Back’ in 5 or 10 Years, Say ACA ‘Was a Monumental Achievement’

Obama assures us that the Affordable HealthCare Act will “prove itself” in just 5 to 10 years. On Valentine’s Day the President thanked those in attendance at the House Democratic Issues Conference, in Cambridge Massachusetts, for “hanging in there tough on an issue that I think 10 years from now, five years from now, we’re going to look back and say this was monumental achievement that could not have happened had it not been for this caucus.”

House Democrats, facing mid-term elections, in November of this year, are nervous about the haphazard rollout of the Affordable Healthcare Act, better known as Obamacare.

Read more at CNSNews.com

The Latest Obamacare Numbers: Three Charts and Two Unanswered Questions

Another 1.1 million Americans selected health plans through healthcare.gov and state-based marketplaces in January 2014, according to new numbers released by the White House, for a total of 3.3 million enrolled under the Affordable Care Act since October. The good news is that a Gallup poll released Feb. 12, 2014 shows substantial declines in the number of uninsured between the ages of 26 and 34—too old to be on their parents’ health plans and perhaps the most likely to risk going without coverage. Moreover, most people signing up on the exchanges are buying mid-tier “silver” plans, which on average pay for about 80 percent of medical costs.

But there are still some important unanswered questions: How many people turning to the health insurance exchanges had been uninsured before? How many people have paid their premiums?

Read more at Bloomberg Businessweek

Obamacare Raises Medicaid Cost as Insurers Shift Tax Bill

Health insurers told to pay $150 billion in taxes over a decade to help fund Obamacare are now shifting at least part of that cost back to taxpayers.

Congress passed the insurer tax four years ago to help cover the uninsured under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Now, the industry is pushing to include some of the cost in contracts with Medicaid programs for the poor that are jointly funded by state and federal governments. The strategy may add $36 billion to $39 billion to the cost of Medicaid over a decade, depending on how quickly the health program expands, according to an industry-funded study released today by the actuarial firm Milliman Inc.

Read more at Bloomberg Politics

Why I’m Getting Sick of Defending Obamacare

Defending the Affordable Care Act, “Obamacare” is becoming difficult. The latest blow to Democratic candidates and liberal activists came Monday, Feb. 10, 2014, from the White House, which announced yet another delay in the Obamacare implementation. For the second time in a year, certain businesses were given more time before being forced to offer health insurance to most of their full-time workers. Employers with 50 to 99 workers were given until 2016 to comply, two years longer than required by law. During a yearlong grace period, larger companies will be required to insure fewer employees than spelled out in the law.

Not coincidentally, the delays place the implementation beyond congressional elections in November, which raises the first problem with defending Obamacare: The White House has politicized its signature policy.

Read more at the National Journal

Obamacare Horror Stories Keep Coming

Each passing day is more incriminating for President Obama’s Obamacare, as the news is like a relentless prosecutor amassing evidence against a serial killer.

  • The Wall Street Journal reports that insurers are facing pressure from regulators and lawmakers about Obamacare plans that offer limited choices of doctors and hospitals. Many of the top doctors aren’t included. This goes to access, choice, and quality of care, and it was wholly foreseeable.
  • The blog “Legal Insurrection” notes that “the reimbursement rates are so low for hospitals that even major research hospitals . . . are refusing to participate in any of the state health exchange plans unless reimbursement rates are renegotiated.”
  • Bloomberg reports that at least six states and counties from Maryland to Oregon are getting inmates coverage under Obamacare and its Medicaid expansion. More than $6.5 billion in annual state costs for treating prisoners will be shifted to the federal government.
  • The Hill reports that a National Small Business Association study found that a doubling of healthcare costs is preventing many companies from growing.
  • Columnist John Podhoretz details the “risible” counterattacks that desperate Obamacare supporters are making against those who have cited the Congressional Budget Office’s finding that Obamacare will cause the equivalent of more than 2 million people losing their jobs.
  • Stateline, the daily news service of The Pew Charitable Trusts, alarmingly reports that medical identity theft has risen sharply and that Obamacare and legitimate concerns over its insecure website have “raised the stakes” and made this very serious matter even more of a concern.
  • The Washington Examiner reports, “There is strong new evidence to suggest the administration’s claims (that more than 9 million Americans have signed up for coverage under Obamacare or Medicaid) are grossly exaggerated and deeply misleading.” Great — just another major issue on which the administration is deceiving the American people.
  • The Los Angeles Times reveals that even after we are beyond some of the Obamacare website glitches and long waits to get signed up, “some patients are now running into frustrating new roadblocks at the doctor’s office …  People are having trouble finding doctors at all, getting faulty information on which ones are covered and receiving little help from insurers swamped by new business.”

Republicans Slam Obamacare’s Employer Mandate Delay as ‘Train Wreck’

The Obama administration Monday, Feb. 10, 2014, delayed another part of Obamacare, stating that medium-size businesses will not face a tax penalty until 2016 for not providing workers with health insurance coverage, refueling Republican criticism that President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law is a “train wreck” and “jobs killer.”

The Treasury Department announcement follows last July’s delay until 2015 for the so-called employer mandate component of the Affordable Care Act.

For most individuals, there’s a threatened tax penalty for not having healthcare coverage in 2014. But the final regulations released will allow businesses with between 50 and 99 employees that are not already offering coverage to avoid a penalty until 2016.

For businesses with 100 or more employees, the final rules reduce to 70 percent the number of full-time workers to whom an employer must offer coverage in 2015. Businesses are required to offer coverage to 95 percent of their employees in 2016 and beyond.

Read more at Newsmax