A Flashpoint in the Battle to Repeal and Replace Obamacare

For a myopic view of Obamacare’s effect on small business, one can look at its results in Louisville, Kentucky. The state saw one of the biggest drops in uninsured individuals under the Affordable Care Act, from 20.4 percent in 2013 to 7.8 percent in 2016, largely in part to the state’s expansion of Medicaid. The state operated its own Obamacare marketplace for two years before moving to the federal exchange in 2017, where today only three insurance companies offer coverage on exchange.

Of late, Louisville has become a flashpoint for the GOP to tout its plans to repeal and replace, with visits from both President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in recent months to talk about why the ACA isn’t working in the state, or elsewhere.

Read more at CNBC

Democrats Demand Answers on Trump Threats to Sabotage Obamacare Insurance Markets

With concerns rising over the future of financial aid for low-income Americans who rely on Obamacare, senior congressional Democrats have asked the Trump administration for information on talks in which health insurance officials say a senior administration official linked the aid to the industry’s support for House Republican legislation to roll back the healthcare law.

The talks, first reported by The Times last week, occurred in April when a group of industry leaders met with Seema Verma, a President Trump appointee who heads the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and oversees Obamacare insurance markets.

Read more at the Los Angeles Times

Obamacare Premiums Are Going Up. Whose Fault Is It?

Another year of big premium increases and dwindling choice is looking like a distinct possibility for many consumers who buy their own health insurance — but why, and who’s to blame?

President Donald Trump has seized on early market rumbles as validation of his claim that “Obamacare” is a disaster, collapsing of its own weight. Democrats, meanwhile, accuse Trump of “sabotage” on a program he’s dissed and wants to dismantle.

Read more at NBC News

Here’s Who Gets the Blame If Obamacare Fails (Hint: It’s Not Obama)

  • With Obamacare’s individual health insurance market struggling, the debate has shifted to who takes the blame if it fails.
  • Supporters of the law are willing to admit that it is failing but that it’s Trump’s fault.
  • Trump’s constant undermining of the ACA is giving his opponents ammunition in the blame game.

Read more at CNBC

Build a Better Bill: GOP Senate Must Save Obamacare Repeal Once Again

It’s no secret that my organization, FreedomWorks, had serious concerns with the American Health Care Act. The amendment negotiated by Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) to allow states to define their own community rating and essential health benefits was a step in the right direction, but further improvements must be made as the bill works its way through the Senate. As Meadows said during the House debate over the AHCA, “The American people are going to care about one thing, and that’s premiums going down.”

It’s a tall order — especially given today’s political climate and the endless onslaught of liberal outrage.

Read more at The Hill

Why Some Can’t Wait for a Repeal of Obamacare

For Linda Dearman, the House vote last week to repeal the Affordable Care Act was a welcome relief.

Ms. Dearman, of Bartlett, Ill., voted for President Trump largely because of his contempt for the federal health law. She and her husband, a partner in an engineering firm, buy their own insurance, but late last year they dropped their $1,100-a-month policy and switched to a bare-bones plan that does not meet the law’s requirements. They are counting that the law will be repealed before they owe a penalty.

“Now it looks like it will be, and we’re thrilled about that,” Ms. Dearman, 54, said. “We are so glad to feel represented for a change.”

Read more at The New York Times

Why So Many Insurers Are Leaving Obamacare

One of the most common reasons critics of Obamacare say the law is “collapsing” is that insurers appear to be fleeing the Affordable Care Act’s health-insurance exchanges, or the state-based, online marketplaces where people can buy individual health-insurance policies.

The fact that one-third of counties are projected to have just one insurer on their Obamacare exchanges this year has been a popular talking point among Republicans—including President Trump—trying to gin up support for their replacement bill, the American Health Care Act.

The stat was echoed in a recent editorial by Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, in which he portrayed Obamacare as a house that’s on fire and “many of our fellow Americans are trapped inside.”

Read more at The Atlantic

The Real Reason Insurers Are Jacking up Rates for Obamacare

  • Obamacare is lurching towards a bizarre form of stability thanks to subsidies.
  • Obamacare subsidies gives insurers the cover they need to jack up rates.
  • Even if rates rise dramatically, subsidized customers will still be profitable for insurers.

Read more at CNBC

Why Even ‘Blue’ States Might Ditch Beloved Obamacare Protections

Under the Republican health bill, it’s up to states whether to dismantle key parts of the Affordable Care Act.

Red, or GOP-leaning, states are sure to be interested in rolling back the law’s coverage requirements and freeing insurers to charge people more when they have preexisting conditions.

As strange as it sounds, deep-blue, heavily Democratic states supportive of Obamacare, including California and New York, may be forced to do the same, according to experts, regulators and consumer advocates.

Read more at The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

A Huge Section of the Gop Bill Undoing Obamacare Isn’t Actually About Obamacare

Republicans celebrated on Thursday after successfully moving a health-care bill forward that they said would fulfill their promise to repeal President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. Yet one of the bill’s most far-reaching sections is only tangentially related to repealing the law, also known as Obamacare.

The law would limit federal spending on Medicaid — the program that provides health insurance to the poor — to an index of inflation in medical prices. Since the program’s costs are increasing more rapidly than that index, over time, the government would spend hundreds of billions less on Medicaid than it would under the current system. It would be up to states to decide how to make up the difference.

Read more at The Washington Post