The single largest tax expenditure in the United States is for employer-based health insurance. It’s even more than the mortgage interest deduction. In 2017, this exclusion cost the federal government about $260 billion in lost income and payroll taxes. This is significantly more than the cost of the Affordable Care Act each year.
Relative deprivation describes being deprived of something a person feels entitled to. For example, they used to have it, expected to have it, or see that others have it. The theory helps explain this political moment of anger in America — whether it's the rise in popularity of Obamacare (in part because many on the left who didn't think it went far enough see the law threatened), why people are marching in the streets to protest the new president and even why Trump won in the first place.
The race to repeal Obamacare by President-elect Donald Trump and the Republican Congress will have one immediate side effect beyond any doctor's office: a large tax cut for the wealthiest Americans....averaging $7 million for each of the 400 highest-earning taxpayers, according to new calculations by the liberal Center on Budget and Policy Priorities using Internal Revenue Service data.
The Affordable Care Act of course affected premiums and insurance purchasing. It guaranteed people with pre-existing conditions could buy health coverage and allowed children to stay on parents’ plans until age 26. But the roughly 2,000-page bill also included a host of other provisions that affect the health-related choices of nearly every American.
And one of the remarkable things about this study is that it shows very, very little change in public opinion on Obamacare. Democrats had a theory, back when they passed the law in 2010, that health reform would get more popular as the benefits rolled out and more people got coverage ... But that change never happened — and the country remains just as divided on the health care law as it was on the day Obamacare passed.
52 million non-elderly Americans could be ineligible for insurance under the old rules. The analysis can't distinguish what type of insurance those people have now; many are likely covered by an employer-based plan. But if those people were to lose their jobs or have a gap in coverage and found themselves purchasing a health plan on their own, they could run into restrictions, higher premiums or even denials if the pre-Obamacare rules were back in place.
A crucial question...is whether the increases this year are a one-time market correction or a sign that the Obamacare markets have become unstable. There are several good reasons to think 2017 is an unusual year for these markets ... But one worrisome sign for the future ... there are a growing number of places where there is no real competition ... about 18 percent of people eligible for Obamacare plans live in places where there is only one choice of insurer.
A provision of the Affordable Care Act that allows insurers to charge smokers higher premiums may have discouraged smokers from signing up for insurance, undercutting a major goal of the law ... The effects were especially noticeable for smokers under 40 years old. In 2014, 65 percent of the smokers in the sample had health insurance, but 75 percent would have enrolled if the surcharges were eliminated, the researchers estimated.
more than 3 million people in the state remain uninsured, and policymakers are searching for ways to reach them. Experts say knowing where the uninsured live and work in California is key to reducing their numbers. City and county outreach efforts can be critical to raising awareness among those who are eligible for federal health insurance programs but not enrolled.
The Supreme Court decision...effectively blocking President Obama’s immigration programs also comes as a blow to California legislators who have been fighting to offer health insurance to people living in the country illegally. Immigrants living in the U.S. without authorization can’t enroll in Obamacare and make up a large portion of those who remain uninsured in California ... those granted temporary relief from deportation to sign up for Medi-Cal, the state’s low-income health program.