The Affordable Care Act (ACA) established health insurance marketplaces where consumers can buy individual coverage. Leveraging novel credit card and bank account micro-data, we identify new enrollees in the California marketplace and measure their health spending and premium payments. Following enrollment, we observe dramatic spikes in individuals’ health care consumption. We also document widespread attrition,…

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Republicans are in a predictable spot as they head to the midterm election: The party failed to repeal ObamaCare, and the press is waving around double-digit premium increases for 2019. Democrats are pinning the blame on Republicans, though the basic problem is still the structure of the Affordable Care Act.

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Last week was an amazing and unusual week at the Department of Justice, and it went largely unnoticed by the mainstream media. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, with the approval of President Trump, submitted court filings in two lawsuits agreeing that Obamacare will be unconstitutional as of Jan. 1, 2019, and that DACA is and always…

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said “everybody” in the Senate wants to preserve consumer protections for people with pre-existing conditions, an Obamacare provision that the Trump administration last week said is unconstitutional and should be struck down in court. “Everybody I know in the Senate — everybody — is in favor of maintaining coverage for…

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Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told lawmakers Tuesday that he wants to preserve access to affordable insurance for Americans with preexisting medical conditions, but he declined to disclose his view of an administration move that could undercut such consumer protections. Calling it “a constitutional position . . . not a policy position,” Azar sidestepped grilling…

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The next great health care war is already starting. It’ll be about costs this time, not coverage, and Democrats are the ones firing the first shots — though neither party has a complete strategy just yet. Why it matters: After a bruising, decade-long fight over the Affordable Care Act, plenty of candidates and lawmakers would love…

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Consumers and insurers face new uncertainty with the Justice Department’s assertion this week that key provisions of the Affordable Care Act are invalid. In a brief filed Thursday, the department asked a federal court to unwind the health law’s protections for individuals with existing medical conditions, such as diabetes or asthma. The law, known as Obamacare, prohibits insurers…

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House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) said Thursday that “Medicare for All” proposals should be “evaluated” if Democrats win back the House this year, adding “it’s all on the table.” Pelosi has long backed a public option for health insurance, but has not supported going further — as many Democrats want — and setting up government-run, universal health insurance. The Democratic…

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Federal officials will not block insurance companies from again using a workaround to cushion a steep rise in health premiums caused by President Donald Trump’s cancellation of a program established under the Affordable Care Act, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced Wednesday. The technique — called “silver loading” because it pushed price increases…

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The Republican-led Michigan Legislature on Thursday gave final approval to a bill requiring able-bodied adults in the state’s Medicaid expansion program to meet work or job-related requirements, sending it to Gov. Rick Snyder for his expected signature. Starting in 2020, adults age 18 to 62 would have to show workforce engagement averaging 80 hours a…

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