Vox’s Ezra Klein explains how the GOP tax bill is “going to upend American health insurance markets”

Klein: Republicans "don’t have an answer to this”

From the December 3 edition of CBS' Face The Nation:

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JOHN DICKERSON (HOST): I was struck when [Senate Majority Leader Mitch] McConnell said “Well, we’ll see how popular this gets once it passes. [Sen.] Chuck Schumer [(D-NY)], in 2010 after the Affordable Care Act passed, said, ”When people learn what is actually in the bill, as this goes along, it's going to become more and more popular." So, they've really just switched teams.

EZRA KLEIN: Well, there are two actually interesting things about that because two things happened here, One is that recently Obamacare has gotten a lot more popular, it’s become a majority popular bill for first time since its passage, since Trump got elected. But the other thing this tax bill does is, on the way to passage, it casually destabilizes the entire individual insurance market in America. So, the Republicans had skinny repeal at the end of the Obamacare repeal effort, the main provision of skinny repeal was that they were going to repeal the individual mandate, and not really replace it with anything. They knew that was a bad idea. And so, the idea was it could only pass if Republicans promised they wouldn't make it law, they would change it at conference.

But right now, they've passed a tax bill that, on the way to passage, it gets rid of the individual mandate. According to Congressional Budget Office, 13 million people will lose health insurance, insurance premiums will go up by 10 percent, individual markets will be much more destabilized, and they don't have an answer for this. So, in addition to a tax bill that is incredibly regressive, has all the features Ron [Brownstein] just mentioned. It's also going to upend American health insurance markets, and they’ve not really thought hard about this or what to do about it or how to handle it, at all. It's something they did to get a little bit of revenue and didn't really think through on the way to passage.


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