The Cruz Amendment

Senator Ted Cruz (R, TX) has a provision in the latest Senate health bill that’s on offer, one that would allow sellers of actual health insurance to sell non-Obamacare compliant policies on the condition that they also sold Obamacare compliant plans on the ObamaMart.  The idea, and it’s a sound one, is that those plans, better tailored their customers’ needs, would soon have commensurately lower premiums, deductibles, and copays and thereby be more affordable.

Health plan sellers don’t like it, though.

While this setup could offer healthy people less expensive policies, insurers and actuaries say it would likely prove dysfunctional over time, pushing up rates and reducing offerings for people buying the compliant plans.

That’s a market decision, though; nothing in the provision or in the overall bill would require the plan sellers offer fewer compliant plans or at higher premiums.

Aside from that, those non-compliant plans would be better tailored—market forces would require it—have fewer items covered that a plan purchaser doesn’t want or need—market forces would push plan sellers to stop forcing contraceptive coverage on men and geriatrics or prostate cancer coverage onto women—and they would, as advertised, have much lower premiums, smaller deductibles, and lower copays.

They would also attract customers, low income and others, from those ObamaMart plans into the non-compliant market because those better tailored and cheaper plans would better suit their needs, too.

Maybe the health care coverage welfare plan providers—sorry, the health insurance companies—don’t want the noise of competition; maybe they prefer the steady, safe income of government subsidies in the form of customers trapped in their protected monopoly in the health “insurance” industry.  Maybe that’s why so many of these companies are leaving ObamaMarts, leaving folks with few plan choices or no plans to buy at all—because the industry as Obamacare has changed it is so sound.

On the other hand, the Progressive-Democrats in Congress should jump on this provision with both feet.  Obamacare plans are terrific, they insist.  Surely, in their wonderfulness, these plans would win resoundingly in the competition of the market place.  Especially with so many of those plans still subsidized through other provisions in the bill.  Wouldn’t they?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *