Sunday, May 28, 2017

Thanks to Trump and the GOP, Insurances Rates Will soar (just as I predicted)

RyanI’ve been over and over this again and again.  If you think the Republicans dead-headed single minded purpose to destroy the ACA won’t affect you because you already have insurance, you’re in for a very rude awakening.  Speaking of deadheads, this is what over 60 million of you lazy ass thinkers voted for with your simple minded approach to politics.

But the GOP says they’ll be able to change the outcome if Democrats will only give up their values and shit on the American public along with them.

From the Washington Post:

We now have our first clear evidence that President Trump’s threats to blow up Obamacare — whether or not he actually intends to make good on them — are going to hurt a lot of people here in the real world. In Trump’s mind, these threats are supposed to force Democrats to make a deal on repeal, but minimal logic reveals that this is extremely far-fetched — meaning the only impact his threats will likely have is a destructive one, for no evident purpose whatsoever.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina has announced that it intends to try to raise premiums by 22.9 percent next year. The company says it would have tried to raise them by only 8.8 percent, but it is going for the larger increase because the Trump administration has not said whether it will continue paying the law’s so-called “cost-sharing reductions” (CSRs) to insurance companies, which subsidize out-of-pocket costs for lower-income people who get insurance on the individual markets. Democrats in Congress want to appropriate money to cover these subsidies, but Republicans have not done so.

In an interview with me this morning, Brad Wilson, the president and chief executive of Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina, said flat-out that the failure of the Trump administration and Congress to guarantee that these subsidies will continue is why rates are going to soar for hundreds of thousands of people in his state.

“The failure of the administration and the House to bring certainty and clarity by funding CSRs has caused our company to file a 22.9 percent premium increase, rather than one that is materially lower,” Wilson told me. “That will impact hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians.” The company says it has approximately half a million customers getting individual insurance via Obamacare.

“We filed a 22.9 rate increase for 2018 based on the assumption that the CSRs will not be in place,” Wilson also said. “The rate increase would be 8.8 percent if the CSRs were guaranteed for 2018. Because they are not, the rate is 22.9 percent.”

Trump has repeatedly threatened to cut off the CSRs. Doing so could cause many insurers to exit the market, potentially costing millions their insurance, while causing others to dramatically hike premiums. The administration paid them for May, but officials continue to refuse to say whether the payments will continue after that.

But it must be stressed that Trump’s own stated rationale for threatening to cut off the payments is just nonsense. The threat appears rooted in pique over the failure to secure the “win” of repeal. Trump has repeatedly said the threat will force Democrats to the table to make a deal on Obamacare’s future. But Republicans are currently pursuing a repeal-and-replace plan that would do a lot more damage to the law than ending the payments would, so it’s unclear why any Democrats would join them in that effort, in response to a threat to do relatively less (though still severe) damage.

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