On the eve of the Iowa caucuses, Hillary Clinton is so desperate she’s willing to identify herself with Obama’s disastrous healthcare legislation. On the campaign trail she recently said, “It was HillaryCare before it was called ObamaCare.”
This simply shows how out of touch she is with reality. Instead of identifying with Obama’s train wreck, she ought to be telling the American people how she’s going to fix our broken healthcare system. Next month will be the sixth anniversary of the passage of ObamaCare and it still lacks support from the majority of Americans.
Unaffordable Care Act
The Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare’s official name) is more unaffordable for millions of Americans every year. The architects of ObamaCare mandated that every American purchase healthcare insurance or pay a tax known as The Individual Mandate.
In 2014, the latest year for which date is available, roughly 7.5 million Americans paid the IRS tax penalty rather than purchase the insurance. With rising insurance premiums and deductibles, it is likely that even more Americans will opt out and pay the tax, even though the penalty is higher in 2016.
How high are those premiums and deductibles? In January, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that premiums on the exchanges rose an average of 9% between 2015 and 2016. But Nathan Nascimento of the Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce disputes these figures. Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Nascimento says their analysis has been more thorough than HHS and has calculated different figures. They calculated the weighted averages for all health insurance plans available on the ACA exchanges. The weighted average gives a more accurate view of overall premium increase, because it takes into account teach insurance plan’s market share.
Their findings: Nationally, premiums for individual health plans increased on average between 2015 and 2016 by 14.9%. Premiums vary widely by state and range from a low increase of 1.5% in California to a high of 47.7% in Minnesota. This exorbitant increase reflects the loss of tens of millions of dollars by the state’s largest insurer, BlueCross BlueShield, which has over 90% of the market. The company requested an average increase of 49% and received approval from state regulators.
But wait – this is only the premium increases. Deductibles are also skyrocketing. According to The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, deductibles are averaging $3000 for Silver plans on the exchanges. For family plans it’s much worse.
Premiums vary by age and the number of family members. The average annual bronze premium for a family of two 40-year-olds is $6,957; for two 50-year-olds it is $9,727. Families with children pay slightly more. The average annual silver premium is $8,424 for two 40-year-olds and $11,778 for two 50-year-olds.
Family Premium Bronze Plan Silver Plan
40-year-olds $6,957 $8,424
50-year-olds $9,727 $11,778
(For more information see Family Healthcare Costs Rising)
Despite all this bad news, Hillary actually wants to associate her name with this disaster. The real HillaryCare was rejected by the people in 1993. Even Democratic Senator Daniel Moynihan said of HillaryCare, “Anyone who thinks (the Clinton health care plan) can work in the real world as presently written isn’t living in it.” Apparently she has learned nothing about healthcare since then.