Seven states reject Obama insurance proposal
November 20th, 2013
04:45 PM ET
8 months ago

Seven states reject Obama insurance proposal

(CNN) - If you like your health insurance plan, you might still be out of luck.

At least if you live in one of the seven states that have rejected the President Barack Obama's proposal to allow health insurance companies to renew plans not in compliance with the Affordable Care Act.

The proposal was meant to help the President keep his promise to millions of Americans who have received cancellation notices from their insurance providers, and would allow companies to renew current plans for one year while people transition to the federal insurance exchange.

Because insurance is regulated differently in each state, the president's plan first requires approval from governors and state insurance commissioners, many of whom have been hesitant to make changes for 2104 so late in the year.

On Tuesday, New York became the largest state to reject the proposal. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, told reporters during a press conference that he doesn't think the President's fix is necessary for New York.

"We haven't had the kind of issues in New York in our exchange that they've had nationwide," Cuomo said. "Our program has actually been working well, the website has been working well, and we've had actually very good success with our program so we don't see any reason to change it now `because we're not having those types of issues."

New York joins Washington, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Indiana in rejecting the President's proposal.

Before making his decision, Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton of Minnesota received a letter from the executive director of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans, who told him that the President's fix "comes too late" and "will destabilize the market and result in higher premiums for Minnesotans."

"Your letter makes clear that making the program changes offered by the President last week would be unworkable for your members," Dayton replied, concluding that he would be directing his Commerce Department to continue to "with the plans made before last week's announcement."

Indiana Insurance Commissioner Stephen Robertson issued a scathing response to the proposal, saying that going along with the president's plan "would seriously destabilize Indiana's insurance market and create logistical chaos."

More than 20 states have yet to make an official decision, while so far 21 states have either said they will implement the proposal, or already allowed insurance companies to renew plans prior to the president's announcement.


Filed under: Andrew Cuomo • Healthcare • Indiana • Massachusetts • Minnesota • Obamacare • President Obama • Rhode Island • Vermont • Washington State
soundoff (57 Responses)
  1. Carl

    Hey Liberals, have you heard about the latest target of your "NonAffordable Care Act"? It's called the "Taxpayer Bailout Prevention Act" that will strip a provision of Obamacare allowing the Obama Administration to pay insurers for offering plans that nobody wants. Have fun!

    November 20, 2013 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  2. LastOne Standing

    Vermont just passed a law for single-payer universal healthcare!... It's a happening, and is on the right side of history.

    November 20, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  3. Bill

    It's time for the states to take their sovereignty back and ignore Obamacare completely.

    November 20, 2013 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  4. Norm

    "So, do people understand now that insurance companies don't want to offer these plans anymore? Even though Obama gives them a choice, they don't want to do it"

    Not true at all. My insurance company offered to renew mine so I did.

    November 20, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  5. Belvarie Varnado

    Gurgyl wrote : "ACA is a Law. Hospitals, greedy insurance thugs, doctors, pharmacy guys lost the game. Period." And you think the government is not greedy and corrupt?

    November 20, 2013 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  6. Norm

    "ACA is a Law. Hospitals, greedy insurance thugs, doctors, pharmacy guys lost the game. Period."

    Your joking right? ACA doesn't address any of these. In fact, these are the WINNERS from ACA. Hospitals, doctors, and pharmacies "guys" are all now guaranteed to get paid in full. Nothing in ACA will force them to lower their prices. And the insurance "thugs" just got millions of new customers.

    November 20, 2013 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  7. ThinkAgain: The GOP owes our nation $24 billion

    Let me guess, these seven are red states, right?

    Wow, what they won't do to screw over their own people and then blame the President ...

    November 20, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  8. ThinkAgain: The GOP owes our nation $24 billion

    @Scott: "Students getting healthcare insurance for $20 a month want to keep those plans. They are learning how to think Republican."

    If they are younger than 26, they can stay on their parents' insurance plan – thanks to Obamacare.

    And if their current plans meet the minimum requirements under Obamacare, students CAN keep them.

    BTW, "think" and "Republican" are mutually-exclusive terms.

    November 20, 2013 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  9. ThinkAgain: The GOP owes our nation $24 billion

    From the UnitedHealthCare website regarding student health insurance (FAQ page):

    Q. I'm young and healthy. Why do I need health insurance?
    A. Despite your age and health, you never know when a serious injury or illness will strike. You're not invincible. And if you don't have insurance, who'll pay your bills? Do you have the money to pay $1,500 to fix a broken leg or $3,000 to stay in the hospital? Insurance gives you the peace of mind that, yes, most of your medical bills will be covered in case something happens.

    If insurance companies are encouraging young, healthy people to buy health insurance, why isn't the GOP?

    Does the GOP want young people to suffer financial hardship? Isn't the GOP encouraging irresponsibility by telling people to not buy insurance?

    Why is the GOP so actively working AGAINST people's self-interest?

    *crickets*

    November 20, 2013 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  10. Nodack

    Scott
    Students getting healthcare insurance for $20 a month want to keep those plans. They are learning how to think Republican.

    November 20, 2013 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |

    You mean the plans that don't cover anything?

    November 20, 2013 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  11. Chris Asking Question

    How many Americans have actually received insurance cancellations? What is going to happen when the employer mandate goes into effect? How is the IRS going to collect the "tax" (i.e. fine/penalty) for those who have not purchased a federal government approved plan or enrolled in Medicaid?

    November 20, 2013 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
  12. Crampon

    It can't be fixed. Repeal and impeach.

    November 20, 2013 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  13. Vegas1970

    Gurgyl
    ACA is a Law. Hospitals, greedy insurance thugs, doctors, pharmacy guys lost the game. Period.

    --
    I think you meant to write that they won. Guaranteed record profits for insurance companies. No cost controls on Hospitals, Doctors or drugs... sounds like a win, win, win and win for them.. The person stuck with the bill is the only loser...

    November 20, 2013 11:43 pm at 11:43 pm |
  14. ladiedragonfli

    i have family that have to move out of their apartment to afford the new insurance, that to me says something is a miss...

    November 20, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  15. Maihoa

    Tony, please think carefully what you are typing. It is hard to change the plan at the last minute to offer the clients that they sent the cancellation notice. They have to jump through a lot of hoops to do that. Why didn't you think Obama changes the law without any authority? laws are passed by congress and only congress can change the law, not president.

    November 20, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  16. GaryB

    I actually currently have one of those non-compliant insurance plans (high deductible, low coverage, high cost plan for small business owners/self-employed). I received a letter in August notifying me that the plan was not in compliance, however, it had been grandfathered in and I could keep it if I want to. Visited the ACA exchange a couple days after it went live, was redirected to California's exchange (which is where I live). The ACA exchange plans are truly a great deal for the self employed and mom & pop shops. I can get bronze plan (about the same deductible as my old plan, but a lot more is covered) and save well over $1500 a year, or I can get a silver plan for just a bit more, cut my deductible by 50%, get low cost office visits, etc. Frankly, I can't wait to switch. After seeing the insurance rates for my family go up every year for 10 years (to the point where my premiums now eat up nearly 10% of my business profits) despite the fact that nine out of those ten years the insurance company never had to pay a dime (all our expenses were paid out of pocket) and in that one year the insurance only had to pay about 4% of the premiums we paid in due to the high deductible and all their exclusions, it will be nice to have insurance that might actually keep me from going bankrupt if something really unfortunate happened.

    November 20, 2013 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  17. vbscript2

    "Let me guess.. Republican Governors...

    *nothing to see here folks, move along*"
    __________________________

    Did you read the list of states? Almost all blue states with Dem governors and blue legislature.

    November 21, 2013 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  18. longfisch

    Gurgyl

    ACA is a Law. Hospitals, greedy insurance thugs, doctors, pharmacy guys lost the game. Period.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Completely ignoring the reality that these stocks have outperformed the market (minus Dr's as they obviously do not have a stock), if what you said was true they would be under performing the market.

    Also, if it is "law", why is the president just making changes at will, without the consent of congress? Were you not the same person who was saying the GOP house could not make changes because "the law is the law"?

    Looking forward to your personal attack.

    November 21, 2013 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  19. longfisch

    Tony

    So, do people understand now that insurance companies don't want to offer these plans anymore? Even though Obama gives them a choice, they don't want to do it.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Why would they, when you are given a golden ticket, you jump with joy and enjoy your new found riches. They will pay out the same amount as they would have under the old plans, but collect more in revenue. They could not be happier.

    November 21, 2013 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  20. EarthWorm

    Hey sign your dog up for Obama Care! A guy in Colorado actually got a letter from the ACA website saying his dog named Yorkie got a policy! Unbelievable! I predict this ACA will become the biggest joke in recent memory for a law named for a President. I wonder how many of the 106,000 who signed up were dogs. Oh well the ACA is going to the dogs!

    November 21, 2013 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  21. Thomas

    "You know, we've got a government designed by the founders so that there'd be checks and balances. You don't want a President who's too powerful or a Congress who's too powerful or courts that are too powerful. Everybody's got their own role. Congress' job is to pass legislation. The President can veto it, or he can sign it. But what George Bush has been trying to do is part of his effort to accumulate more power in the Presidency, is, he's been saying, "Well, I can basically change what Congress passed by attaching a letter sayin' 'I don't agree with this part' or 'I don't agree with that part.' I'm going to choose to interpret it this way or that way." Uh, that's not part of his power. But this is part of the whole theory of George Bush that he can make laws as he's going along. I disagree with that. I taught the Constitution for ten years, I believe in the Constitution, and I will obey the Constitution of the United States. We're not going to use signing statements as a way of doing an end run around Congress."

    -Sen. Barack Obama, Campaign Event At Billings West High School, Billings, MT, 5/19/08

    November 21, 2013 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  22. Iamnotfooled

    WASHINGTON — Buoyed by a report showing that health care spending has risen by the lowest rate ever recorded, White House officials said Wednesday a continuation of the trend could lead to more jobs and lower-than-expected costs.

    Reduced health care costs for employers could lead to 200,000 to 400,000 new jobs per year by the second half of the decade, said Jason Furman, the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

    "If just half the recent slowdown in spending can be sustained, health care spending a decade from now will be $1,400 per person lower," Furman said.

    The Council of Economic Advisers report released Wednesday also said health care inflation is the lowest it has been in 50 years.

    The Affordable Care Act is, in part, responsible for the lower costs, Furman and other health experts agree, while Republicans say the declining rate of increases comes purely because of the slowed economy.

    An economy hobbled by the recession and the economic crisis in 2008 played a role in some of the reduced spending growth, Furman said, but the report cited "structural change" caused, in part, by the law.
    USA Today Nov. 20, 2013

    November 21, 2013 02:08 am at 2:08 am |
  23. Iamnotfooled

    At least if you live in one of the seven states that have rejected the President Barack Obama's proposal to allow health insurance companies to renew plans not in compliance with the Affordable Care Act.

    Well President Obama is off the hook. He tried. It is solely on the insurance companies. now.

    November 21, 2013 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  24. Zondar

    Yet again, Obama attempts to shift the blame to someone else. Now he's trying to make the insurance companies and the state insurance commissioners look like it's their fault.

    Nevermind it's HIS signature law that created this entire mess.

    Always someone else's fault.

    November 21, 2013 02:29 am at 2:29 am |
  25. Emma2

    To Anthony in California: The ONLY Republican governor on that list is in Indiana. All the rest are Democrats.

    November 21, 2013 05:40 am at 5:40 am |
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