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April 01, 2014

Most Obamacare "Sign-Ups" (However They're Vaguely Defined) Stemmed From Two Modest Changes in the Law

John Sexton calls it an application of the 80/20 rule, the idea that the first 20% of effort gets you 80% of the ultimate results, and the last 20% of the results takes 80% of the effort.

Byron York notes that the great bulk of "sign-ups" occurred not due to the mandate or blowing up the individual insurance market, but due to two smaller changes.

The Times says the numbers break down like this: 4.5 million previously uninsured people are now on Medicaid; 3 million previously uninsured young people are now covered because of a provision that allows them to stay on their parents' policies until age 26; and 2 million previously uninsured people have purchased coverage on the Obamacare exchanges...

By far the largest part of Obamacare's health coverage expansion has come from a) expanding Medicaid, and b) allowing young people to stay on their parents' coverage. The part where Democrats essentially blew up the health care markets, imposed the individual mandate, and caused premiums to rise and deductibles to skyrocket? That hasn't been such a success. If the Times number are correct, all of that -- placing new burdens of higher costs and narrower choices on millions of Americans, in addition to setting the stage for coming changes in employer-based coverage -- has resulted in two million of the previously uninsured gaining coverage.

Chuck Todd, whose "news" company, MSNBC, enjoys "declaring" things, like, for example, that Iraq was in a state of civil war in 2006, now "declares" Obamacare to be "unrepealable," due to all these people who've bought in.

The health-care law is here to stay

As the Obama administration and the uninsured race to meet today’s (sort-of) deadline for Americans to have purchased health insurance, we can now say something we weren’t 100% confident about back in October in November: The health-care law is here is to stay. More than 6 million have now enrolled in a health-care plan under the federal and state exchanges, which is up from a mere 100,000 back in October. And given the recent enrollment surge, it’s possible the final number is close to 7 million. What’s more, when you add the folks who’ve gotten insurance via expanded Medicaid and those under 26 who are on their parents’ insurance, overall total could be as high as 15 million....

Most of the people who've purchased insurance on the exchanges did so because they had insurance which was cancelled due to Obamacare, and were forced to buy more expensive insurance there -- so five million or so of this alleged 6-7 million were previously insured. They just have worse insurance now.

The number Todd is crowing about is all those additional people covered either by the under-26 rule or the Medicaid expansion.

To the extent he's got a point here (which I'm doubtful about; this is a Viral Meme Stunt to get MSNBC linked), which part of Obamacare is now "unrepealable"?

The part responsible for 80% of the new insured cases, which caused only 20% of the disruptions (under-26, Medicaid expansion), of the part what caused 80% of the disruptions and produced only 20% of the sign-ups?

digg this
posted by Ace at 10:55 AM

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