“New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) declined to set up a state-based insurance exchange under the healthcare law Thursday — the same day he met with President Obama on Hurricane Sandy aid. The move will be welcomed by conservatives who blamed Christie for praising Obama’s response to the storm. Sandy hit just before the election and distracted national media coverage from Obama’s campaign against Mitt Romney. “

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“In recent weeks, the Obama administration issued a series of proposed regulations for the health insurance market. Since then, I conducted an informal survey of a number of insurers with substantial individual and small group business… On average, expect a 30% to 40% increase in the baseline cost of individual health insurance to account for the new premium taxes, reinsurance costs, benefit mandate increases, and underwriting reforms.”

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“If young adults can’t afford health insurance policies available in 2014 under the health care law, state insurance officials are worried they won’t buy them. And that could drive up the cost of insurance for the mostly older, sicker people who do purchase coverage. That’s a potential problem even in states like California and Rhode Island, which are moving ahead to carry out the law, state officials told representatives of the Obama administration Friday at a meeting of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.”

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“States already struggling to get by will face even tighter fiscal constraints thanks to yet another costly Obamacare mandate. A study last week from the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured revealed President Obama’s health care takeover would dump $1 trillion in new costs on federal and state taxpayers over the next decade.”

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“As key provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are moving closer to full implementation, the Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS) is beginning to define regulations, with the latest round of draft rules released last Friday.
Among the new regulations is a proposed 3.5 percent “user fee” to be charged to insurers that want to sell plans on the
federally facilitated insurance exchanges (FFE).”

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“President Obama won re-election and Democrats maintained control of the Senate this month, but the states hold the future of ObamaCare in their hands. Knowing the harm the law would do to their citizens, to the economy and to American health care, governors should refuse to become its enablers.”

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“But the real story is that Democrats are reaping the GOP buy-in they earned. Liberals wanted government to re-engineer the entire health-care system and rammed the Affordable Care Act through on a party-line vote, not stopping to wonder whether it would work. Now that implementation is proving to be harder than advertised, they’re blaming the states for not making their jobs easier.”

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“Nearly three weeks after President Obama’s reelection, the Administration has officially published three proposed rules implementing his signature legislative package, the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proposals are relatively uncomplicated compared to other ACA rules; together, they take up a brisk 93 pages. Nevertheless, they represent some of the more notable changes mandated by the law.”

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“The vast majority of Americans with “pre-existing conditions” already have insurance. Why? Age is strongly correlated with developing a chronic illness – and seniors are covered by Medicare. If you’re disabled and poor, and can’t work, you’re eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. The low-income poor (healthy or not) are already eligible for Medicaid. In between, the majority of Americans have employer-provided insurance, and are also already protected from pre-existing insurance exclusions or rate hikes due to illness, through HIPAA. Who’s left then? Not that many people.”

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“Arizona Governor Jan Brewer said on Wednesday she was rejecting a major provision of President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law that calls for creating state-based health insurance markets where consumers can purchase private, federally subsidized coverage.”

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