• Politicos Dogpile On Tom Price For Telling The Truth About Obamacare

    Politicos Dogpile On Tom Price For Telling The Truth About Obamacare

    The Trump administration’s former Health and Human Services secretary could have changed his surname to Kinsley this week. Kinsley refers to columnist Michael, creator of the “Kinsley gaffe,” defined as “When a politician tells the truth—some obvious truth he isn’t supposed to say.”

    Price did just that on Tuesday, when in a speech he said provisions in the tax legislation effectively eliminating the individual mandate penalty “will actually harm the pool in the exchange market, because you’ll have individuals who are younger and healthier not participating in that market, and consequently, that drives up the cost for other folks within that market.” READ MORE...

  • Is CBO Working With Budget Committee To Hide An Obamacare Bailout?

    Is CBO Working With Budget Committee To Hide An Obamacare Bailout?

    It appears my recent article, which raised questions about whether the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) illegally manipulated the budget baseline to ease the passage of an Obamacare “stability” bill, hit a nerve. To borrow a current metaphor, if there were any more collusion between the House Budget Committee and CBO on this issue, Rod Rosenstein would need to appoint a special counsel to investigate.

    Consider a series of questions asked by Rep. Diane Black (R-TN) at House Budget’s April 12 hearing on the new Budget and Economic Outlook. Black asked CBO Director Keith Hall about the agency’s treatment of the law’s cost-sharing reduction payments (CSRs), which President Trump cancelled in October. READ MORE...

  • Center For American Progress Drops New Government-Run Health Plan

    Center For American Progress Drops New Government-Run Health Plan

    The Center for American Progress proposed a plan for government-run health care Thursday, which the liberal think tank calls “Medicare Extra.”

    Unlike Bernie Sanders’ single-payer system, which would abolish virtually all other forms of insurance, the plan would not ban employer coverage outright — at least not yet. In broad strokes, CAP would combine Medicaid and the individual insurance market into Medicare Extra, and allow individuals with other coverage, such as employer plans, traditional Medicare or VA coverage, to enroll in Medicare Extra instead. READ MORE...

  • What You Need To Know About The Proposal For Short-Term Health Plans

    What You Need To Know About The Proposal For Short-Term Health Plans

    On Tuesday morning, the Trump administration issued a proposed rule regarding short-term health insurance plans. The action represents the second prong of the Trump administration’s strategy, outlined in last October’s executive order, to offer regulatory relief to insurance markets. The Department of Labor acted on the first prong, issuing a proposed rule expanding access to association health plans, in January.

    As I noted in October, the Obama administration issued a rule in October 2016 designed to limit short-term plans. The Public Health Service Act specifically exempts “short-term, limited-duration insurance” from the definition of “individual health insurance coverage,” exempting such plans from all of Obamacare’s new, federally imposed regulatory regime (though they are regulated by states). READ MORE...

  • White House Plans To Bail Out Obamacare And Fund Abortion Coverage

    White House Plans To Bail Out Obamacare And Fund Abortion Coverage

    The White House released its budget proposal this morning. Apart from the fact that the budget abandons any attempt to get to balance within ten years (or ever), a footnote buried deep in the document hides key proposals: Bailing out Obamacare health insurers to the tune of tens of billions of dollars, and taxpayer funding of abortion coverage.

    On page 141, footnote 6 of Table S-6, showing the president’s policy proposals, includes the following admission: “The Budget requests mandatory appropriations for the risk corridors program and for cost-sharing reduction payments.” READ MORE...

  • Inside The Giant Insurer Bailout In The Senate 'Budget' ‘Deal’

    Inside The Giant Insurer Bailout In The Senate ‘Budget’ ‘Deal’

    I noted in my prior summary of the Senate budget “deal” that, as with Obamacare itself, Senate leaders wanted to pass the bill so that we can find out what’s in it. And so it proved.

    My summary noted that the bill includes a giveaway to seniors, by accelerating the process Obamacare started to close the Part D prescription drug “donut hole.” I also pointed out that this attempt to buy seniors’ votes in the November elections by promising them an extra benefit in 2019 might backfire, because encouraging seniors to choose more expensive brand-name pharmaceuticals over cheaper generics will raise overall Medicare spending and increase premiums. READ MORE...

  • Obamacare Exchanges Fraud Costs Taxpayers Millions

    Obamacare Exchanges Fraud Costs Taxpayers Millions

    What do Obamacare and Haley Joel Osment have in common? They both see dead people.

    On Tuesday, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released another report into eligibility verification checks on the federally run Obamacare insurance exchange used by more than three dozen states. As with prior studies, GAO concluded that regulators still need to improve integrity efforts to ensure the federal government spends taxpayer funds wisely.

    Among the report’s most noteworthy conclusions: A total of 17,000 federally subsidized insurance policies studied during the 2015 plan year—the most recent for which GAO had complete data at the time of its investigation—began or continued after the applicant’s reported date of death. In 1,000 of those cases, coverage began after the applicant’s reported date of death. In a further 2,000, the application was submitted after the applicant’s reported date of death—in most cases because the exchange automatically re-enrolled applicants without checking to determine that they remained alive. READ MORE...

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