Senator Jim DeMint
The Kaiser Family Foundation released their monthly health care tracking poll today. This month’s poll includes one interesting, but inaccurate, survey question: “When the requirement that nearly all Americans have health insurance goes into effect in 2014, do you think you will have to change your current health insurance arrangements, or not?” Phrased that way, 28% of Americans said they believe they will have to change insurance plans.
But here’s the catch: Under regulations implementing Obamacare, tens of millions of Americans are already losing their current health coverage, even before 2014. According to the Administration’s own estimates, its onerous regulations on grandfathered health plans will force half of all employers – and as many as 80 percent of small businesses – to give up their current coverage by next year. When plans lose grandfathered status, they will become subject to more of Obamacare’s costly mandates and regulations, thus raising premiums for many Americans.
Other surveys suggest the Administration’s estimates could be a significant under-estimate. The National Business Group on Health released a study of its large-employer members last August, in which nearly half (49%) of firms already lost their pre-Obamacare coverage in 2011, with a further 19%having at least one plan that loses its pre-Obamacare coverage this year. And the state of Ohio also released a report from independent actuaries at Milliman last year that came to much the same conclusions: “The estimated prevalence of grandfathered plans is expected to diminish quickly and be almost non-existent by 2014” – meaning virtually everyone will lose their current plan within three short years of Obamacare’s passage.
So while the Kaiser survey – influenced by flawed and inaccurate questioning – indicates that many Americans do not believe they will lose their current coverage under Obamacare, the facts speak otherwise, and show how millions of Americans are losing their pre-Obamacare coverage, incurring higher costs as a result. It’s one more reason why the Kaiser survey, like others, shows that the American people remain resolute in their opposition to the 2700-page health care law.