Nine out of 10 large companies are working to avoid Obamacare’s so-called Cadillac Tax on health insurance plans if lawmakers fail to reform the law, according to a new study.
The American Health Policy Institute, a non-partisan think tank, found that nearly every major employer in the country is taking steps to avoid the tax, which targets comprehensive health plans deemed to be luxurious by regulators. The law will hike taxes by $68 billion for American workers.
Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), in 2018, an excise tax on high-value employer provided health plans, the so-called “Cadillac tax,” takes effect. Even before 2018, though, the excise tax is already driving many employers to fundamentally reassess their health care plans. While the tax was intended to reduce health care spending, its impact in the real world is being felt by workers who are seeing the value of their health care plans reduced.
Obamacare was enacted more than five years ago, and is now in its second year of nearly full implementation, but, in political terms, it is still not a settled matter. Republicans remain nearly unanimous in their opposition to the law, which continues to inspire widespread unease among the larger electorate. Many of its most important provisions — for instance, the individual mandate, the Independent Payment Advisory Board, and the “Cadillac” tax — are so unpopular that even many Democrats would like to see them repealed.
For decades, federal health policy — through taxes, spending, and regulation — has encouraged people to get their health insurance through their employers, and has encouraged them to choose health plans that pay for routine care. These policy decisions have inflated prices and made insurance harder to obtain for people who don’t have access to employer coverage, and especially for those who have chronic ill health. Obamacare attempted to fix some of these problems, mainly by adding an additional layer of government interventions and attempting to centralize the health-care system.
Jeb Bush’s new health-care plan looks a lot like the plan Scott Walker embraced two months ago, which in turn looks a lot like the one Marco Rubio sketched in an op-ed article and the one touted by Senators Orrin Hatch and Richard Burr and Representative Fred Upton. That’s a good thing. It means that Republicans are finally reaching a consensus on what to do about health policy that draws on the best conservative thinking on the subject. Bush (for whose campaign my wife works) is helping to ratify that consensus.
Today in New Hampshire, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush unveiled his plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. In many ways, the plan reflects the mainstream of Republican wonk thinking on health care, and expresses similarities to an earlier plan proposed by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Like Walker’s plan—but in a different way—Bush’s plan seems likely to increase the deficit.
It has been clear for some time that Republicans need just two things in order to repeal Obamacare—a winning alternative and political willpower. The jury is still out on how much of the latter the party possesses. But when it comes to uniting around a well-conceived alternative that can pave the way to full repeal, the news is increasingly good. Jeb Bush’s just-released Obamacare alternative is the latest example of this encouraging trend.
Half of the Americans who remain uninsured several years into Obamacare are eligible for government assistance in buying coverage, a new survey shows.
In less than three weeks, the Obama administration will embark on the third enrollment period under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, where it faces the ongoing challenge of persuading those who have resisted obtaining health coverage to buy it. About 32 million people, or about 11 percent of the U.S. population, are still uninsured.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) extends health insurance coverage to people who lack access to an affordable coverage option. Under the ACA, as of 2014, Medicaid coverage is extended to low-income adults in states that have opted to expand eligibility, and tax credits are available for middle-income people who purchase coverage through a health insurance Marketplace. Millions of people have enrolled in these new coverage options, but millions of others are still uninsured. Some remain ineligible for coverage, and others may be unaware of the availability of new coverage options or still find coverage unaffordable even with financial assistance.
By liberal and media acclamation, ObamaCare is a glorious success, the political opposition is fading and the entitlement state has gained another permanent annex. The reality, for anyone who cares to look, is different and suggests that ObamaCare is far more vulnerable than this conventional wisdom.