Delay the Individual Mandate?

Kate Rogers, of Fox Business, had some thoughts.

Delaying the sign-up deadline would give the government more time to work out the kinks on and allow users to become more familiar with the site and find the best plan that fits their needs, experts say.

But would it give sufficient time for the rest of the problems with implementation data reporting to insurers, payments for claims, etc to be worked out?  Time to work out the “kinks” in the law itself?

On the don’t delay side, she has this:

“As an economist, I can assume that the people with the most expensive health-care needs: the oldest and sickest, would be spending thousands out of pocket on health care and are the ones with the most demand for the product,” [Devon Herrick, National Center for Policy Analysis Senior Analyst] says.  “Younger people, if they get a break or are told they can wait three months, they may do that.  You can’t run a risk pool with the sickest people jumping in on day one, and the healthiest on day 90.”

Why would the healthiest jump in at all, though?  This is a bad bet for them.  Further, under what moral system can a government compel them to jump in?

In the end, the Individual Mandate needs to be delayed, if only to balance the Employer Mandate delay—but both of those need to be delayed only as stepping stones to getting rid of Obamacare and replacing it with a proper, market- and patient/doctor-oriented reform.

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