Letter: Unexpected facts on ACA
On May 7, a congressional panel brought in six insurance executives to display the horrors of the Affordable Care Act. But it did not go according to plan.
Several even testified that their stock had risen since the law’s enactment (definitely not socialistic), and the government had not taken over the industry.
The Republicans had been claiming that more than one-third of those who had signed up by March 31 had not yet paid up, but the witnesses stated that only about 20 percent had not yet paid and of those many were not required to pay for an additional month.
And regarding the “vast” number of policies that had been canceled because of not meeting the law’s minimum benefits, they could not testify to that either.
The Republicans were yearning to hear about the huge rise in premiums they knew was coming next year but no one was willing to predict how much, if at all, premiums would rise. The executives wanted some changes, but none advocated repeal. In fact, so far the ACA seemed to be working.
They just wouldn’t demonize the ACA, causing Rep. Michael Burgess, a Texas Republican, to complain that none of the executives “wanted to be forthcoming.” This was perhaps because all had sworn to tell the truth. Unfortunately, the congressmen had not taken the same oath.
There is no truth to a rumor that the panel is planning to charge the witnesses with contempt. There is also no truth to the rumor that henceforth they will view the ACA with an open mind.