“With much of the focus on Obamacare now on how much individual premiums could increase next year, a new analysis suggests there’s one way to keep them in check — more competition. That’s the conclusion of a new report from economists Leemore Dafny, Christopher Ody and Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber.”

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“Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed state records for a grand jury investigation of the troubled Cover Oregon health insurance website, the governor’s office said Tuesday.”

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“Nevada’s health-care exchange board voted Tuesday to cut ties with Xerox Corp., which helped build the state’s troubled insurance website, and instead use the federal government’s technology for the next insurance enrollment season.

A spokesman for the exchange, known as Nevada Health Link, said lawyers were examining provisions in the state’s $75 million, five-year contract with Xerox to allow it to terminate it early. The state has paid Xerox around $12 million for work that had been completed to its satisfaction, said C.J. Bawden, the spokesman.”

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“Early evidence suggests that emergency rooms have become busier since the Affordable Care Act expanded insurance coverage this year, despite the law’s goal of reducing unnecessary care in ERs.”

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“The Silver State Health Insurance Exchange board voted unanimously Tuesday to end its relationship with Xerox, the vendor contracted in 2012 to build the exchange’s Nevada Health Link website.

In place of Xerox, the exchange will adopt the federal Healthcare.gov exchange’s eligibility and enrollment functions for the sign-up period that begins Nov. 15, though it will keep its status and funding as a state-controlled system. The exchange will also issue a request for proposals to evaluate replacement systems in coming years. A new platform could come from a state with a functional marketplace, or from a vendor with a similar, proven program.”

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“The Obama administration has quietly adjusted key provisions of its signature healthcare law to potentially make billions of additional taxpayer dollars available to the insurance industry if companies providing coverage through the Affordable Care Act lose money.”

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“Healthcare reform has largely ignored the poor. The healthcare safety net has far too many holes, and the Affordable Care Act builds on a flawed system of health insurance. Lower income families, especially those enrolled in Medicaid, have a difficult time finding doctors who will accept their coverage. Insurance is of little value if doctors will not work with your insurer.”

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‘Last week, a panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., heard oral arguments in King v. Sebelius. King is one of four cases challenging the implementation of ObamaCare’s Exchange subsidies, and the penalties they trigger, through federal Exchanges. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provides those subsidies only “through an Exchange established by the State.” ‘

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“The New York Times is lawyering again in defense of the Affordable Care Act in an editorial tendentiously titled More Specious Attacks on Reform. Hence the tendentious title of this post. In reality, legal arguments typically have two sides and dismissing one as specious (or frivolous) is almost always unwarranted and undermines the credibility of the critic, in this case the editorial writer of the Times.”

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‘A new poll of likely voters in the states and districts with the most competitive Senate and House races brings more bad news for President Obama and his party.

“In the congressional districts and states where the 2014 elections will actually be decided, likely voters said they would prefer to vote for a Republican over a Democrat by 7 points, 41 percent to 34 percent,” reports Politico, which commissioned the survey by research firm GfK. “Among these critical voters, Obama’s job approval is a perilous 40 percent, and nearly half say they favor outright repeal of the Affordable Care Act.”‘

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