Republicans are promising extra money for the health markets, but experts say it won’t be enough.
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Senate Republicans could vote to repeal Obamacare’s individual mandate in a matter of hours.
And they might do it with votes from Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), the two stalwarts who voted against every version of Obamacare repeal earlier this year.
Republicans must appease Collins by agreeing to pass two Obamacare stabilization bills that President Trump has already said he supports but experts warn won’t actually do enough to mitigate the mandate’s repeal.
First there’s Alexander-Murray, the stabilization measure that has been under discussion for months. I already reviewed why that bill would not actually offset the damage of repealing the mandate, which would lead to an estimated 13 million fewer people with insurance and higher premiums.
The second bill is Collins-Nelson, a plan co-sponsored by the Maine senator and Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL). Republican senators have said that both of these bills could be passed in an end-of-year spending plan.
Collins-Nelson would provide $4.5 billion in federal reinsurance funding over 2018 and 2019 to help lower insurance premiums by compensating insurers for their costliest patients.
The thinking, from Collins’s point of view, is this money would help mitigate the 10 percent increase in premiums that CBO projects if the tax bill passes, because healthy people would drop out of the market without the mandate.
So would it?
I asked friend of VoxCare Larry Levitt at the Kasier Family Foundation. His answer was: Collins-Nelson might partially help lower premiums after the mandate is repealed. But it probably wouldn’t fully offset Read More Here