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  • Less Than Meets the Eye: The Obamacare Exchange Regulations

    Yesterday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released its proposed regulations for the Obamacare version of health insurance exchanges. State lawmakers are a key audience for these regulations, which is why HHS wrapped its announcement in talk of “state flexibility.” In truth, the proposed regulations don’t give states … More

    “No More Waivers for You!”

    In a classic case of the “Friday afternoon news dump,” last week the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it is closing the process to apply for a waiver to Obamacare’s annual limits provision in September. Both the timing and substance of this decision confirm that HHS’s … More

    Judge Vinson's Tough Love for State and Federal Lawmakers

    The principal issue addressed in Federal District Court Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling Monday on the case of Florida vs. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is the application of the Constitution’s “interstate commerce” clause with respect to Obamacare’s individual mandate. But two other parts of his ruling send an … More

    HHS Report on Obamacare’s Preexisting Conditions Impact: Say What???

    On the eve of the scheduled vote in the U.S. House of Representatives on a bill to repeal Obamacare, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a report yesterday entitled: “At Risk: Pre-Existing Conditions Could Affect 1 in 2 Americans: 129 Million People Could Be Denied Affordable Coverage … More

    HHS Waivers and the Three I’s of Obamacare

    Yuval Levin has made the important point that, when HHS granted waivers exempting some employer health plans from Obamacare’s prohibition on annual benefit limits, it was the “kind of government by whim, and not by law” that is “the essence of the regulatory state.” It is indeed a very troubling … More

    The Right Way to Limit Pre-Existing Condition Exclusions

    The inability of some Americans to obtain health insurance for pre-existing medical conditions continues to be used by Obamacare supporters as justification for the mammoth legislation.  The truth, however, is that the problem was nowhere near as big as portrayed, and the solution doesn’t require 2700 pages of legislation or … More

    Reconciliation Bill Increases ObamaCare Medicaid Costs for Twenty Eight States

    The U.S. Senate is currently debating H.R. 4872, which amends the Obamacare bill passed by the House Sunday evening and signed into law by the President on Tuesday. This second piece of legislation is advertised as necessary to “fix” problems with the basic Obamacare legislation — such as by deleting … More

    Reconciliation Bill Tosses New York a Fiscal Hand Grenade

    The pending health care legislation would cover the uninsured mainly by dumping most of them into the federal/state Medicaid program. Not surprisingly, many states have objected to the additional costs that such a Medicaid expansion would impose on their taxpayers. Indeed, that was the motivation behind the infamous “Cornhusker Kickback” … More

    President's Proposal Introduces "AIG Risk" in Federal Insurance Rate Regulation

    The White House has just issued an 11 page concept paper (PDF) for yet another health care bill that, among other items, includes a proposed new Federal “Health Insurance Rate Authority.”  The Administration has yet to provide any legislative language on how this new Federal regulatory regime would operate, but … More

    Michigan And Nebraska: The Senate Leadership Has Got A Deal For You!

    It has been widely reported that various “sweeteners” are tucked away in the Manager’s Amendment to the Senate health care bill (H.R. 3950). Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) worked out provisions designed to secure the votes of Senators Ben Nelson (D-NE) and Carl Levin (D-MI) by exempting the biggest … More