What’s Happening with Obamacare?

This week the House of Representatives will vote, almost precisely along party lines, to postpone Obamacare’s individual mandate. Like the 37 earlier votes to repeal the entire health care law, this bill will then move to the Senate, never to be heard from again. This, despite the fact that by a two-to-one margin (56 percent to 26 percent, according to Rasmussen) voters want to delay implementation of the individual mandate.

Now that the Obama administration has unilaterally decided to postpone the law’s employer mandate, workers may now face a situation where they will be legally required to purchase their own insurance or pay a penalty because their employers take advantage of the delay and don’t provide coverage.

The delay to the employer mandate adds to the manifold problems they already face.”

It’s not just workers whose employers don’t currently provide coverage who may be affected. Many employers, especially small businesses, may look at rising insurance costs and decide to stop providing coverage. Even before the administration delayed the employer mandate, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that as many as 11 million workers could be dumped by employers who choose to pay the penalty rather than the cost of insurance. Others’ estimates, such as one from the American Action Forum, suggested that number could be as high as 35 million. With no penalty at all, at least for a year, we can expect even more employers to decide it makes sense to drop coverage.

But those workers will still be on the hook for either the cost of insurance or a fine … er … tax.

That hardly seems fair, especially given how expensive that insurance is likely to be. A study by the benefits-consulting firm Milliman found that premiums in the individual market — where those uninsured workers will have to shop — could increase by as much as 50 percent. The young and healthy could face especially large premium hikes, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that they “could see insurance rates double or even triple when they look for individual coverage under the federal health law later this year.”

Of course, if they purchase insurance

You can read the rest of this article at: http://feeds.cato.org/~r/CatoHomepageHeadlines/~3/E5lTiwu63ds/obamacare-gets-worse-workers

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