Some people like to make the claim that President Obama did wrong by the American people by making a deal with insurance companies and providing watered down coverage blah blah blah. Obama cut a deal … certainly, but the insurance companies did not like that deal. They didn’t like that 80% of all of the money they make on premiums must be spent on areas directly focused on care to YOU instead of profits for THEM. And let’s be clear … insurance companies would not be spending $100 million unless it meant they were losing in a very big way. Additionally – they did this in a way that was very stealth …
The National Journal writes about how the insurance lobby spent over $100 MILLION to defeat Obamacare. And they hid it by funneling it through the Chamber of Commerce. You can find the article HERE:
The backchannel spending allowed insurers to publicly stake out a pro-reform position while privately funding the leading anti-reform lobbying group in Washington. The chamber spent tens of millions of dollars bankrolling efforts to kill health care reform.
The behind-the-scenes transfers were particularly hard to track because the law does not require groups to publicly disclose where they are sending the money or who they are receiving it from.
For example, in its 2009 IRS filing, AHIP reported giving almost $87 million to unnamed advocacy organizations for “grassroots outreach, education and mobilization, print, online, and broadcast advertising and coalition building efforts” on health care reform. That same year, the chamber reported receiving $86.2 million from an undisclosed group. Bloomberg’s Drew Armstrong first reported the AHIP-chamber link. The $86 million accounted for about 42 percent of the total contributions and grants the chamber received.
The next year followed a similar pattern. In 2010, AHIP reported giving $16.5 million to unnamed advocacy organizations working on health care reform and the chamber reported receiving about $16.2 million from an undisclosed source, which the Alley has learned was AHIP. The $16.2 million accounted for about 8.6 percent of the total contributions and grants the chamber received that year.
Rick Ungar at Forbes adds HERE:
According to Neera Tanden, who served as the senior advisor for health reform at the Department of Health and Human Services and was a member of the Obama White House health reform team, it was all about the Medical Loss Ratio (MLR)—the provision of the ACA that not only requires the health insurance companies to spend 80 percent of your premium dollars on actual health care expenditures, but further requires that they refund to their customers any amounts they fail to spend as required by the MLR.
The total rebates under the law that will shortly be refunded to insurance customers are estimated to total $1.1 billion for 2011 alone—clearly motivation for the insurers to defeat the law although one wonders if it wouldn’t be easier for these companies to simply follow the law and spend according to the MLR.
We wrote about the $1.3 Billion in rebates that Americans are going to receive this year because of Obamacare HERE:
Well – one of those major elements of the law which Republicans worked very hard to block was the “80/20″ law which would force health insurers to send rebate checks directly to consumers if they spent less than 80% of premiums directly back to the consumer in the form of reimbursing medical costs. In other words – insurance companies can make money but the days of ridiculous profits are over. (Not so for Big Pharma however but I digress). Oh – and the checks must arrive by August 1st by law. Ha…that’s not intentional or anything. *wink*
I still think Americans who are against Obamacare just don’t get it. I’ve written about that HERE. They don’t understand what they would be losing if the Supreme Court repeals it.
Sidenote to that – even a majority of Republicans like Obamacare’s elements as long as it doesn’t have Obama’s name on them. Greg Sargent writes HERE:
I asked Ipsos to send over a partisan breakdown of the data. Key points:
* Eighty percent of Republicans favor “creating an insurance pool where small businesses and uninsured have access to insurance exchanges to take advantage of large group pricing benefits.” That’s backed by 75 percent of independents.
* Fifty-seven percent of Republicans support “providing subsidies on a sliding scale to aid individuals and families who cannot afford health insurance.” That’s backed by 67 percent of independents.
* Fifty-four percent of Republicans favor “requiring companies with more than 50 employees to provide insurance for their employers.” That’s backed by 75 percent of independents.
* Fifty two percent of Republicans favor “allowing children to stay on parents insurance until age 26.” That’s backed by 69 percent of independents.
* Seventy eight percent of Republicans support “banning insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions; 86 percent of Republicans favor “banning insurance companies from cancelling policies because a person becomes ill.” Those are backed by 82 percent of independents and 87 percent of independents.
And you can find a chart that displays why America needs to get serious about it’s healthcare system HERE.
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