GOP Freaks Out Over Health Care's Economic Impact, Private Insurers Remain Calm

The consequences of the flip to Republican governorships during the midterms is starting to rear its head. As of yesterday, the GOP governors of 25 states vowed to join the Florida lawsuit against the Obama Administration seeking to block the healthcare bill. Some of their argument lies in the false notion that administering an expanded Medicare program will break the backs of the states... even though private insurers are developing contracts with individual states to do the dirty work.

The Republican's distortion of the truth about the Affordable Care Act continues, but their theories just keep being deunked. For instance: after the ridiculous scare tactics that giving “grandma” more medical benefits will somehow magically kill her, one of the big Republican arguments against the healthcare bill it was that it would erase 1.6 million jobs and dust the budget. The Congressional Budget Office has reported those fears are simply untrue -- the workforce could diminish by 0.5% because people have the means to retire earlier, not because jobs are lost -- but still, the GOP continues to spread lies about the healthcare bill's potential impact. Daily Finance reports that an independent analysis by FactCheck dispels the notion that  "The House Republican leadership. . . badly misrepresents what the Congressional Budget Office has said about the law. In fact, CBO is among those saying the effect 'will probably be small.'"

A new report on Politicounderscores that point. Investors and existing private health care companies are much more relaxed than hysterical lawmakers looking to distort the bill, with several insurers saying the regulations have helped increase stability. Even huge companies like Aetna are seeing the benefits in keeping the bill intact:

Health insurers spent barely anytime discussing Republicans’ repeal efforts. Aetna’s Zubretsky touched on the subject briefly only to say that Republicans understand that a rifle shot approach to tearing out specific health reform provisions, particularly the individual mandate, would not bode well for their business.

“The unintended consequence of repealing and replacing part of the legislation is the biggest risk here,” he said. “If guaranteed issue stays but the enforceable mandate disappears, you need another mechanism to make the costs in the risk pool work.”

Read more at Politico.

AlterNet / By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

Posted at January 13, 2011, 6:21am

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