Friday, November 4, 2016

The Obamacare Death Spiral Continues

The Obama administration recently revealed that premiums for Obamacare's benchmark silver plan will jump an average of 22 percent in 2017. This means premiums have now skyrocketed 116 percent in the last three years. 

Obamacare defenders argue that the price hikes are not as bad as they seem, since many enrollees will get more subsidies. Of course, these defenders didn't mention escalating costs at all when they were selling the Obamacare idea to the American people—to the contrary, Obama repeatedly promised that his plan would lower the typical family's premiums by $2,500 per year. Since that has proven false, we're now told that everything's fine because of magical subsidies that, in fact, are paid for by American taxpayers.

Of course, rising prices are not the only problem with Obamacare—insurers are fleeing the exchanges in droves, leaving consumers with dwindling options. As CNN reports, "The number of carriers will drop to 228 next year in the federal exchange and selected states, down from 298 in 2016." It also relates that 21 percent of customers returning to the exchanges will only have one available carrier next year, and that five states will only have one insurer providing plans on the federal exchange.

Think about what an honest explanation of Obamacare would have sounded like before its enactment: "We will create a healthcare system that features spiraling premiums, steadily decreasing choices, and a giant bill for taxpayers. Oh, and by the way, if you like your doctor, you can't necessarily keep your doctor."  

I'm guessing that would not have been an effective sales pitch.

As Obamacare continues its death spiral, House Republicans are proposing far-reaching healthcare reforms that would lower costs, increase competition, expand choice, guarantee coverage, and accelerate medical breakthroughs—you can read about our plan here.