Cruz amendment the solution to ObamaCare?
According to a recent Gallup Poll, 11.7 percent of United states adults lacked health insurance in the second quarter – April through June – of this year. This is a rise from 11.3 percent in the first quarter, and a jump from 10.9 percent in the third and fourth quarters of 2016.
Manhattan Institute senior fellow Chris Pope maintains that there are two main factors for the rise in the fall from health insurance coverage.
“Firstly, there is the exchange – the fact that premiums continue to increase – that it continues to be less attractive for individuals to enroll on the exchange, and secondly, that the Medicaid expansion is starting to level off in many places,” Pope explained. “The effect of the exchange disintegrating was being masked by the expansion of Medicaid – and that’s no longer the case as it was.”
In a nod to ObamaCare’s problems, the White House posted an infographic on its website Monday, announcing that 46 percent of people who canceled coverage purchased through Healthcare.gov – between August 2016 and April 2017 – before paying their premium. They blamed cost as the reason for cancellation.
Meanwhile, Gallup indicated that uncertainty surrounding the healthcare law may also be driving the increase.
The new numbers come as members of United States Congress continue to discuss Republican proposals to repeal and replace some or all of the Affordable Care Act – more popularly known as ObamaCare.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has called the amendment a “hoax,” adding that it would only make health insurance more expensive for many Americans.
“Under the guise of lowering premiums, it makes healthcare more expensive because deductibles and copayments would be so onerous that many Americans would pay much more out of their pockets than they pay today,” Schumer contended earlier this month. “It’s a foolhardy trade to exchange lower premiums for far more expensive deductibles and copayments, and in addition, Americans with pre-existing conditions will almost certainly be left without access to affordable and quality healthcare – making this even worse than the House bill on this issue.”
Pope wholeheartedly disagrees with Schumer’s claims.
“I really like the Cruz amendment,” Pope countered. “It does what I’ve been advocating for a long time now, which is to let people choose the most affordable insurance that responds to their needs.”
As Pope understands things, markets thrive when businesses are allowed to compete to fulfill what people need.
“Insurance works well when insurers are allowed to compete properly and offer individuals insurance at the best prices available,” Pope asserted. “The Cruz amendment maintains the exchange as a safety net – and it’s appropriate that it stays there as a safety net – but there’s really no reason to force everyone into what is for most people not a good and attractive choice.”
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